Nazareth was awarded a 1-0 forfeit victory over Kennedy in the Riverside-Brookfield Class 2A Sectional championship after IHSA officials confirmed the Crusaders had been using an ineligible player since mid-October.
Kennedy defeated St. Joseph 4-2 in the sectional semifinal Wednesday. During the match, Maria Gulli, mother of St. Joseph player Anthony Gulli, noticed Miguel Martinez playing for Kennedy. She notified St. Joseph coach Stanley Niemiec on Thursday that Martinez was also a member of the Chicago Fire Academy team.
Niemiec then notified IHSA executive director Marty Hickman of the allegation. According to IHSA spokesman Matt Troha, the IHSA verified Martinez’s involvement with the Fire Saturday morning.
IHSA rules forbid players from simultaneously competing in club and high school sports. Nazareth advances to the Lemont Supersectional Tuesday. The forfeit championship marks the first sectional title in school history for the Roadrunners.
This is the second Class 2A forfeit of the tournament involving a Public League soccer team. Amundsen received a forfeit victory after a Prosser player allegedly assaulted a game official verbally and physically in a regional final. Mather also had to forfeit its berth in the Public League semifinals after the Rangers were found to have used an ineligible player.