Leading off today:
Eldred's football team will forfeit its season-ending game this weekend after a school investigation found multiple incidents of hazing by players, district Superintendent Robert Dufour told the Times Herald-Record
The district became aware of hazing allegations, which were sexual in nature, on Monday and began an investigation that uncovered behavior over a three-week period that included some players pushing their genitals into the face of others, the paper reported.
"Our school district's highest priority is the safety and security of all of our students," Dufour said. "While these acts did not result in any physical harm, they were not harmless in intent. Hazing is not acceptable, will not be tolerated and will be dealt with severely by the district."
Dufour said the district's investigation is ongoing and improper behavior will be subject to discipline under the district's code of conduct. State Police investigated the incident and no charges were filed, the paper reported.
On Oct. 17, Monroe-Woodbury canceled its two remaining JV football games because of alleged bullying incidents. M-W interim Superintendent Elsie Rodriguez and Town of Woodbury police continue to investigate the alleged hazing, the paper reported.
Following up: I don't know that I can add anything to the arguably unprecedented coverage in the Rochester area Tuesday after the announcement that Section 5 had stripped Aquinas of its opening-round football victory against Pittsford, knocking the defending NYSPHSAA Class AA champion out of the post-season.
As I rolled through the pre-set buttons on my car radio, four of the eight stations I checked were talking about the day's developments at the same time -- and only two of those stations were sports-talk radio. TV stations led the newscasts at 5 and 6 p.m. with the story. By the time 11 p.m. rolled around, at least two of them led with packages of stories from multiple reporters.
For some perspective, major developments over the weekend in a brewing scandal with the Rochester Housing Authority dominated print and electronic media headlines Sunday and Monday. By mid-day Tuesday, that story might as well have been in the federal witness relocation program, never to be seen again.
If you need to get up to speed on the Aquinas ruling, centered on the eligibility of star QB Jake Zembiec following his return from an injury:
• Here's what I blogged Tuesday.
• The Democrat and Chronicle's Wednesday story.
• A report from TWC's 24-hour news channel.
• The statement issued by Aquinas.
More developments on the story, including possible legal action I suppose, are likely on Wednesday and I unfortunately may not be able to chime in with updates. However, follow the NYSSWA on Twitter and we'll point you to the latest news.
A side note: The day wasn't a total loss for Aquinas football coach Chris Battaglia. In the midst of the rapidly developing story Tuesday came word that his son had verbally committed to play lacrosse at Penn State down the road.
C.J. Battaglia is a freshman long-stick midfielder at Webster Thomas this year.
Don't count them out: To the casual observer, the inclusion of Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake in the NYSSWA girls Class A rankings was a bit off because of the Spartans' 7-10 record to begin the week.
Given their difficult regular-season schedule and winning tradition, though, the ranking is spot-on. Further evidence came Tuesday when Burnt Hills edged Queensbury 2-1 in the Section 2 semifinals. Converted defender Kylee Babcock and Danielle Sloan scored in the final 13 minutes for the win.
Nineteenth-ranked Burnt Hills will seek its 10th straight sectional title Saturday vs. top-seeded Scotia-Glenville.
"We always have a bull's-eye on our back, I think this year it's a little bigger," Burnt Hills coach Brian Bold told The Times Union. "It showed today. We go down a goal, we don't panic, we even it up, we go back to our shape, we