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Nov 1, 2013 10:22 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Both Southampton And Hampton Bays Football Teams Forfeit Final Regular Season Games

Nov 5, 2013 11:47 AM

Both the Southampton and Hampton Bays varsity football teams forfeited their final regular season games in Division IV last week, the result of unrelated incidents.

The Mariners (1-7) were scheduled to play Friday night at 6:30 p.m. at home against Mercy (1-7). The Baymen (2-6) were scheduled to travel to Greenport (6-2) on Saturday for a 2 p.m. game.

Southampton had already been eliminated from playoff contention—but the Baymen would have qualified for a spot in the postseason with a win over Greenport. The forfeit eliminated them from playoff contention and ended their season.

Neither district was willing to share even basic details about the forfeits or the reasons behind them, though Southampton hinted at allegations of “misconduct” in a statement on the forfeit, and a Hampton Bays official acknowledged a “pattern of behavior” among student athletes. The incidents do not appear to be related.

Southampton varsity head coach Edgar “Hikey” Franklin confirmed on Friday morning that his team’s game was canceled but declined to provide any additional details.

Southampton High School Principal Brian Zahn said of the forfeit: “What I can tell you is there was an incident reported to us that we are investigating and following up on. Because of the nature of our investigation, we felt it best that we just forfeit that game.”

Hampton Bays head coach Mike Oestreicher also confirmed on Friday afternoon that his team’s game was canceled, but also declined to provide any additional details.

The Mariners finished last in Division IV, while Hampton Bays finished ninth. The top eight teams make the playoffs.

Both schools have been tight-lipped about the situations. Southampton Athletic Director Darren Phillips and Hampton Bays Athletic Director Drew Walker both declined to comment on the situations.

A statement on the Southampton School District website states: “We are investigating and have taken preliminary action on an incident that was brought to our attention Thursday regarding the varsity football program. The safety and security of our student population is paramount, and we take reports of misconduct seriously. As a result of our preliminary actions, we were not able to field a complete team for last night’s final game of the season. As a district, we expect both students and staff to uphold high moral standards and exhibit positive character traits both on and off the field. As this is a pending investigation, we are not at liberty to provide further information at this time.”

On Monday, Lars Clemensen, the Hampton Bays School District superintendent of schools, said: “It came to our attention and the coaching staff’s attention that there was a pattern of behavior that we felt was unbecoming of how student athletes should act. Because this pattern was going on, we felt it was best to forfeit our final game of the year. It was not related to any other school district, as some are insinuating. We found out about it Thursday, two days before the game. I can’t elaborate any further, because it is a code of conduct matter, and it’s related to students, so we’re going to deal with it internally.”

When asked if it was a legal matter involving police, Clemensen said, “No, nothing like that, thank God. It was an isolated incident that revealed a pattern of behavior that we felt was unbecoming of a student athlete.”

Deirdre Gilligan, the media relations director for Syntax, a public relations firm that does work for both districts, also declined on Monday to provide any additional information.

Erin McKinley and Kyle Campbell provided additional reporting for this story.

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hazing...students suspended, coaches suspended
By itsamazing (224), Southampton on Nov 1, 13 4:48 PM
1 member liked this comment
and I'll be shocked if any details ever come out
By itsamazing (224), Southampton on Nov 1, 13 9:43 PM
With all the tax payer money going to sports teams in both Hampton Bays and Southampton, they say it keeps kids out of trouble. It seems that football, and basketball bring the worst out of these two towns. A brawl stopped last years football game, basketball games need state troopers in riot gear with assault weapons to keep crowd control. What, does some one need to be killed at high school game before any school board or superintendent puts forth a punishment that fits the crime. Stop using the ...more
By RexRuger (3), Punta Gorda, Florida on Nov 3, 13 8:24 AM
2 members liked this comment
Do I understand this correctly? These schools have done away with wood shop, metal shop, cooking and many other useful classes only to spend millions of dollars on a sports field used by a few(none now). Any yet we are not being informed why they are not being used.
By RobertGatto (3), Hampton Bays, New York on Nov 3, 13 6:25 PM
2 members liked this comment
Hazing reported to school, no follow ups. Goodbye coaches. I wouldn't be surprised if we did not hear any more details. Sweep it under the rug. Classic Southampton schools, thinking that they're protecting some stellar educational institution.
By Lets go mets (377), Southampton on Nov 3, 13 7:29 PM
1 member liked this comment
I always believed that participating in High School sports was a commitment to be a part of something greater than ones self,
Team means just that.
Kids need stern leadership with consequences that accompany unacceptable behavior.
They're not stupid... If they find weaknesses in towing the line...they will not tow.
What a shame especially for those who have done everything right.
Football has become a year round opportunity for those who love this sport to witness the result ...more
By kahuna (70), Tampa on Nov 3, 13 9:57 PM
1 member liked this comment
A fish rots from the head
By C Law (354), Water Mill on Nov 4, 13 8:02 AM
2 members liked this comment
Can the soccer teams now use those fields?
By RobertGatto (3), Hampton Bays, New York on Nov 4, 13 5:45 PM
They have always used the field, same with field hockey.... Show how involved you are
By legendsofaesthetics (2), Southampton on Nov 13, 13 12:29 PM
Place Most of the blame directly on the parents. Parents of today's sports players think their kids are superstars and the teams cannot do without them. The remainder of blame is on the EGOS of coaches.
By kpjc (161), east quogue on Nov 4, 13 6:47 PM
1 member liked this comment
Coach Taylor from East Dillon would have handled this, no prob
By littleplains (305), olde england on Nov 4, 13 6:51 PM
Do you I like the part where it wasn't even bought up at the Board of Education meeting? This is just another case of sweep it under the rug. Unfortunately we the taxpayers will be paying to defend lawsuits that are related to this incident. This is all because there is no leader in the superintendent position of Southampton schools. The past superintendent thought it was important to have planning for a new district office. Rather than doing his job of helping the education of his students. I don't ...more
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Nov 7, 13 10:13 AM