CHERRY TWP — After hearing from students and residents, the Moniteau School Board voted Monday night not to forfeit upcoming football games against Karns City and Clairon.
The board voted 7 to 2 to rescind its previous stand to forfeit the games, but still play them. It took that initial action on Aug. 28 as part of punishment for player-to-player hazing that occurred on the football team.
Moniteau plays Karns City on Friday and Clairon on Sept. 21.
On the vote to rescind the forfeited games, board members Roy Peffer and George Pry voted no.
Voting to make the change were Kathy McBride, Dr. Doug Kimmey, Trixie Heck, Joann Duke, Diane Hunter, Michael Panza and Melissa DeMatteis.
About 100 people filled the board room of the administration building, forcing the meeting to be moved to the high school auditorium.
Of the 20 people who spoke, only two said they supported the board’s original decision to forfeit the game.
The other speakers said they supported the board’s action to punish the individual players involved, but they opposed punishing the entire team.
Matt Marterella, Moniteau’s 2013 class president, gave the board a petition signed by nearly 300 people to reinstate the two games.
He along, with the other speakers, said that by forfeiting the game, the school board would punish the not only the entire team, which includes the victims, but also the cheerleaders, the marching band, fans and community.