Gilman football coach Biff Poggi watches his team play Calvert… (Gene Sweeney Jr., Baltimore…)
After making up Friday’s postponed football game Monday afternoon, Calvert Hall and Gilman both face quick turnarounds to prepare for important games this weekend, something neither coach is thrilled about.
Friday night, No. 2 Calvert Hall will play at No. 10 Archbishop Spalding in a showdown for second-place in the MIAA A Conference. Saturday at 1 p.m., the No. 1 Greyhounds, who clinched the top spot for the A Conference playoffs with Monday’s 24-14 win over the Cardinals, will host their 97th annual rivalry game against McDonogh.
The short recovery and preparation time concerns both Gilman coach Biff Poggi and Calvert Hall coach Donald Davis, who, along with both schools’ athletic directors, had agreed Friday night not to reschedule their game. Saturday, MIAA officials said the game, which had been postponed by lightning, had to be made up.
“I think our league made a terrible decision,” Poggi said after Monday’s game. “We won this game. It’s not sour grapes, but Donald and I spoke all weekend and Donald’s in a terrible situation. He’s got a team he’s got to get ready now to play a Friday night game against a team that’s 3-1 in the league. Donald has one day of real preparation and that’s just not right for the kids. This was a physical football game. If someone gets hurt next week because it’s a short week with no preparation, I think the league has to answer for that.”
Calvert Hall officials requested that the Spalding game be moved to Saturday, but Cavaliers coach Brian Propst said his school is hosting an open house on Sunday and that nothing can be scheduled on Saturday because of preparations. The game will be played as scheduled on Friday at 7 p.m., when the Cavaliers usually play their home games.
“It’s a great challenge,” Davis said. “Spalding’s playing great football right now. They’re a physical bunch of kids. It’s going to take a tremendous amount of focus over the next three days for our kids to play the way they need to to be successful on Friday night.”
St. Paul’s faced the same Monday-Friday prospect after the Crusaders game with St. Vincent Pallotti was stopped Friday night, but the Crusaders finished their game Sunday. Poggi and Davis didn’t want to play Saturday or Sunday because both had players making college visits.
That left only Monday with no other possibility for a makeup game since the A Conference regular season ends this weekend.
Rick Diggs, MIAA executive director, made the call that game had to be played.
“A lot of things have to be considered,” Diggs told Nelson Coffin of The Baltimore Sun Media Group. “But it’s not an overwhelming safety concern. It’s been done before. We just thought there wasn’t an alternative and that the game needed to be played.”
Seven games involving local public school teams also were played Monday and most of those teams will come back and play on Friday too. Boys’ Latin has the tightest turnaround of any team after playing John Carroll at 6 p.m. Monday and being scheduled to host Archbishop Curley at 3 p.m. Friday.