Ashland forfeits football game against Crater

The Ashland High football team has forfeited its game against Crater Friday, citing a flu outbreak that's left the team shorthanded, the school announced today.

"Due to serious flu conditions throughout the team, a decision was based on the health of each individual," AHS football coach Charlie Hall announced at 11:25 a.m. in a press release. "Practices were cancelled Monday and Tuesday in an attempt to stop the spread of the flu. Over the last two days we have averaged over 20 players missing from school. Some of the sick players reported to a team meeting this morning, symptom free, but still coughing and weak as a result of the sickness."

The outbreak caused 218 students, including 24 football players, to miss school Monday.

The game was supposed to be the Grizzlies' Southern Sky Conference opener. Instead, Ashland (2-5) will play its first conference game Oct. 23 at Mazama.

"On the advice of local healthy care authorities, our staff is extremely concerned and cautious about the risk of secondary infection related to this strain of the flu," Hall added. "Having at-risk players return prior to a full recovery would not be in their best interest. Having players prolong their recovery is certainly not in the best interest of the program."

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