“All season we tossed wiffle balls at the girls before games. This is my first year as head coach, and If I had known that this was not allowed during the playoffs, I would not have done it — Calvary Murrieta coach Tiffany Bleil.
The Division V’s top softball seed Calvary Murrieta forfeited its 4-0 victory over Barstow because it participated in an illegal pre-game whiffle-ball batting practice. Yes it’s true, and San Dimas could benefit because they were on track to meet Murreita in the quarterfinals. Why does it feel like the punishment doesn’t fit the crime. Take away a home game maybe, but the season? I’ve always hated this rule, and wonder why opposing coaches or athletic directors call you on it. If a coach see’s this happening, why can’t you walk over and explain what they’re doing is illegal. If he argues and continues on, then pursue it and turn it over to CIF. But if the coach shows genuine remorse, and may not know the rule and stop immediately, then shake hands and play. Or like I always say, “Do the Right Thing.” Who wants to win this way? And more importantly, you’re punishing kids that worked all season, and their entire careers for an opportunity they will never get back because of a silly rule. I know as a competitor, I wouldn’t want to put my uniform back on if I advanced this way.
Steve’s take: This one of the rare occasions where Fred and I disagree. To me, this is a rule to combat an unfair advantage, and Calvary Murrieta won a playoff game by having an unfair advantage. The Murrieta coach can say she didn’t know the rule, but isn’t there an adage that states ignorance of the law is no excuse? She states that they hit with whiffle balls throughout the season. I guess she doesn’t know that there’s a difference between that and the real thing. But I think what it really comes down to is: There was a playoff game played, the team that won had an unfair advantage, and when that happens, the winner must forfeit.