Lake Forest’s week of practice for naught
Updated: September 14, 2012 9:28PM
Lake Forest’s football players and their families spent much of Friday by their computers awaiting an announcement on the fate of Friday night’s football game against Lake Zurich, which was put in limbo by Lake Forest High School’s teachers going on strike.
The Lake Forest athletic department announced its plans to cancel the game a little after 4:30 p.m. Friday. Lake Forest will forfeit the game, as a result.
“It was probably one of the toughest things I’ve had to go through, personally,” Lake Forest senior quarterback Andrew Clifford said. “The whole team is really disappointed. We’ve worked for nine months. We have nine regular season games and to have one of those taken away, it’s kind of heartbreaking. But there’s nothing we could do.”
The teachers in the Lake Forest High School District 115 went on strike Wednesday morning, and the union and school board have not been able to reach an agreement in three days of negotiations.
While a decision on the cancellation and forfeit of Friday’s game against Lake Zurich would have typically occurred much earlier, Lake Forest athletic director Tim Burkhalter waited until after 4:30 p.m. to announce the cancellation of the football game in the hope a deal could be reached.
On Wednesday, Lake Forest coach Chuck Spagnoli crossed the picket line and ran his team’s practice. Spagnoli, a health and wellness teacher, did so to prepare his team to play if an agreement between the union and school board occurred in time for Friday’s game. Wednesday and Thursday’s practice, according to junior Regis Durbin, felt like a typical practice.
“They weren’t different at all,” Durbin said. “They were practically the same. We still practiced hard and there was no difference. There was no talk of the strike. We were ready for the game.”
The Scouts, who dropped to 3-1 after the forfeit, are scheduled to host Zion-Benton on Sept. 21. Lake Zurich improved to 3-1.