Three starters on the Montclair Prep football team were declared ineligible for the season by the Southern Section hours before the Mounties were to play Farrington on Thursday in the Shawn Akina Memorial Classic.
Both starting wide receivers--Leland Sparks and Cardell Henderson--and two-way tackle Rusty Savage had petitioned the Southern Section for an additional year of eligibility.
“All I can say at this point is that the petitions were denied and the players will appeal,” Montclair Prep Coach George Giannini said. “If that appeal is denied, this will go to a court of law.”
Derek Sparks, Leland’s cousin and Montclair Prep’s standout running back, switched uniform numbers for the game--wearing Leland’s No. 5 instead of his usual No. 35.
“We’ll continue this battle on the mainland,” Giannini said. “Needless to say, the team was devastated when we were informed this morning.”