by nathan oster
The Greybull-Riverside game that was supposed to represent the official start of the football season on Friday night has been cancelled and will not be made up, according to officials from both schools.
Riverside pulled the plug on the game on Tuesday, citing a lack of healthy players.
It’ll go down in the record books as a win by forfeit for the Buffs.
Shane Schaffner, the athletic director at Riverside High School, said the Rebels have been fighting low numbers since the opening day of practice.
“We have 10 healthy and able-bodied football players on our master eligibility list at Riverside High,” said Schaffner. “Fourteen players began our Week 0 jamboree (at Tongue River); we finished the contest prematurely after a third injury reduced available players to 11.
“At Saturday’s practice, the three injured players were re-evaluted and still were not able to participate. At Monday’s practice, same scenario, with the three injured players not participating. Additionally, on Monday, our 11th player was absent from school and practice, leaving only 10. Today, (Tuesday, Sept. 1) Player No. 11 is still absent and his return status is far from imminent.
“If our staff felt there was a possibility of fielding a team this Friday, we would,” said Schaffner.
Nolan Tracy, the activities director in Greybull, said that with the state handling the football scheduling, it’s not feasible for a game to be added on such short notice. The Buffs will practice on Friday and get ready for their next game, which is Sept. 11 against Mountain View.