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Paly girls' season comes to an end after forfeiting playoff win

Original post made on Feb 21, 2013

While the SCVAL El Camino Division champion Palo Alto girls' soccer team was looking forward to Saturday's Central Coast Section Division I quarterfinal match against SCVAL De Anza Division champ Los Gatos, that showdown between league champs will not be held.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, February 21, 2013, 9:45 PM

Comments (57)

Posted by CCS Sucks
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Feb 21, 2013 at 11:01 pm

CCS and CIF have both become a bumbling bunch of bureaucratic fools. They take great pleasure in forcing teams to forfeit games - even playoff games - because of a lack of 'proper paperwork'. Let's see - they did it a year ago to Girl's Lacrosse. They did it this year to Girl's Soccer. Of course, there are rules. No one was 'hurt' by the fact that 20 of the best girls in the bay area tried out for a National Team. But about 20 girls on Paly's team are devastated because this nut Nancy Blaser runs around with a staff of equally unqualified people looking for rules violations - actually spending most of her time taking 'anonymous tips' from people looking to screw schools against which they compete on extremely technical rules violations.

Having attended several meeting in my particular sport, I can attest these people are about as useful as entrenched government bureaucrats. And about as helpful. And ask more about the $200K pensions that Nancy Blaser and others have upon retirement.

CCS is supposed to be run by and for the benefit of the schools. When will Earle and Phil stand up to these clowns and put a stop to this stuff? CCS is more about its rules and its ego and its politics than doing what is right for sports and for students.

Posted by Jason
a resident of Community Center
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:51 am

Well written, "CCS Sucks". This is just an unbelievably ridiculous turn of events and typical of CCS witch-hunting. When will Nancy Lazenby Blaser stop this crap?!?!?!?

Posted by YouDontGetIt
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 6:26 am

This PA resident hopes at least some of you overly-involved parents will at some point understand that in stacking the sports deck in your son/daughter's favor, you do them and the kids they compete against a great disservice.

When relatively wealthy Palo Alto sends its kids to camps, national combines, etc when the kids are in *high school*, you're giving them an unfair advantage over other kids whose parents can't, won't & frankly shouldn't go to such lengths.

The high school sports playing field should start & stay level, and that necessarily means that all the private leagues, coaching, camps, national events etc that you send your kids to are unfair. CCS is IMHO totally right to look for even the smallest violation of its rules, which exist, like I said, to keep the playing field level.

I doubt there's a one of you that'll get it, which is the frustrating part. You think it's normal for your kids to win their team's league season, advance to the playoffs and then make a deep run, but have you stopped to consider the relationship between the unfair advantage you give your kids by spending beaucoup $$$ on private camps, coaches, training, leagues & tournaments, and their teams' supposed success? That's not the real world, it's a cocoon. Public school sports should prepare kids for reality.

Posted by TravelBallisbad
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Feb 22, 2013 at 6:53 am

To everyone reading this. Two points: 1) the CCS sucks yes and this is a technical lowend violation for a kid looking to try out for national team, but one exception opens a floodgate of one off exceptions. 2) Travel ball is bad for the community and kids.

I have 1 kid in private and 1 kid in public school in PA. Parents who put their kids in travel ball ruin it for all the other kids in the community. Palo Alto is public school trying to be a private school (last I checked it's not). A $20m grant to a gym is another signal that it's all about sports not the school or learning. It is well known that the Palo Alto soccer program and the Palo Alto baseball program is all stacked with travel ball kids. It is well known that the coaches on both soccer and baseball run their private leagues as Palo Alto varsity.

This is a big problem and it's bad for the community. I am surprised that Palo Alto actually puts up with coaches allowing their private clubs to become the varsity. They made their own bed and now have to lie in it. It's a bummer for all the other good kids.

Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 7:18 am

[Post removed due to same poster using multiple names]

Posted by A.D.
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Feb 22, 2013 at 7:18 am

Hard to understand how Palo Alto's A.D. did not hold her out of the game especially since there was communication going on before the game. Perhaps a little more due diligence would have been done had it been a football player in question.

There is nothing more sad to watch a number of adults effect the lives of so many young athletes.

Posted by Parent
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Feb 22, 2013 at 7:46 am

Demoted? NIce. Thanks Peters.

Posted by SoccerA
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 7:47 am

What You Don't Get it doesn't get.

The parents of this student/athlete didn't send this athlete to NATIONAL CAMP. She was selected as one of 20 played in the country to attend this camp. These are elite athletes who probably all have dreams of making the full National team someday. She plays for her HS because she has school spirit! I'm sure she has worked very hard at her craft to get to this level. There is just no way she nor her HS team should be punished. These camps go in and out of being approved. It is just so ridiculous!

Posted by YouDontGetIt
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 8:12 am

@SoccerA - this student/athlete's personal sporting aspirations don't matter one whit next to the needs to the public school team she's on, end of story. Why? Sports is a leisure activity, not a career choice.

I'm so sick of what sports has become in this country. EVERY major professional sports league is FULL of people on HGH & other PEDs, yet we are encouraging our children to aspire to their 'greatness'. The message we send? Try to become a good athlete in your sport so that you can get to the point where you have to take HGH/PEDs to make a career out of it. Ludicrous.

Posted by sports enthusiast
a resident of Gunn High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 8:12 am

This is at least the third time in recent memory under Athletic Director Hansen's stewardship that a Paly sports team has been eliminated from post-season play due to "paperwork" issues. There was the basketball player from Australia, the lacrosse player from M-A and now this soccer player. Three times indicates that this is not likely by chance. Perhaps the Paly administration should put in place processes and procedures to increase the likelihood that this will not occur again in the future. And, maybe, AD Hansen should accept some responsibility in these cases rather than allowing the school principal to send out basically the same mea culpa message each time.

Posted by powertrip
a resident of Duveneck School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 9:15 am

[Post removed due to same poster using multiple names]

Posted by Travel Ball Is Good
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 22, 2013 at 9:37 am

Since when did winning become a bad thing? Last year the team did so poorly Keith Peters writes that they got demoted. And that's supposed to be a good thing? The Charleston Gardens parent showed their appreciation with a thank you note above.

So the coach brings on some soph and frosh girls who play travel ball to the varsity team and they win the division (14-4-2) and the first game of playoffs. Last year I don't think they even won a single game. That was completely demoralizing. I think if a high school has star atheletes in their midst they should play them and see where it goes.

This paperwork issue isn't just a Paly problem it's a Nancy Blaser problem since she does this to lots of schools and students. We need to have someone and a system at Paly the verifies every players eligibility before every game for every single sport. Then we won't have problems like this occur every single year.

Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Feb 22, 2013 at 9:51 am

Teams have to submit rosters to CSS well in advance of even qualifying to play. Why wasn't the ineligibility of the player discovered before it became a problem. Doesn't CCS verify that players are eligible? Sounds like there is a bit of ego at play with the governing bodies. These kids have been failed by the very adults that claim the process is in place to protect them.

Posted by What a Shame
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 9:58 am

How did Stu Pederson (the father), Coach Hansen, or Coach Devlin not realize this might be an issue? How did the entire team of parents not figure it out? No one has common sense? Hansen has been through this before with prior teams.

Stu Pederson has 4 children, all athletes, and he is a successful baseball player who played for the Dodgers in 1985: Web Link

At 15 minutes before the match, "Hansen still wasn't sure what the problem was, other that it involved Pederson."

Jacey's older brother, Joc, is one of the "top prospects" for playing for the LA Dodgers.

"Her athleticism is, by far, superior to anyone on our team," Paly girls soccer coach Kurt Devlin said in a S.J. Mercury article, which goes on to state she plays on Team USA: Web Link

I'm guessing someone from other teams called the CIF and reported this. People are always jealous of Palo Alto High School teams due to perceived wealth and try to find any excuse to take us out.

Posted by What a Shame
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 10:12 am

To the socialists above, "Youdon'tgetit" and "Travelballisbad" (who might be the same person): There is nothing wrong with additional training - this is a capitalist country. Students should be allowed to do whatever it takes to improve their game. Those who are capable of earning a college scholarship should be allowed to train and not be dumbed-down by some socialist philosophy. Don't most people at a young age grow up learning that life isn't fair? Or perhaps the whining socialists realize that life isn't fair so they point their jealous fingers at others their entire lives.

Why is it okay for M-A to have a top facility but not Palo Alto High? We value both our sports and academics, doesn't have to be either.

Posted by followtherules
a resident of another community
on Feb 22, 2013 at 10:49 am

CIF Rule 600 is very clear and specific. Every school and athlete that participates in CIF is well aware of this rule and what the consequences are when it is broken. Participation in a soccer training camp and friendlies during school season is in direct violation of the rules, unless the camp and the friendlies were sanctioned by CIF. These sanctions do not roll over from year to year. If there is ANY question or doubt of a sanction, why not get confirmation? What do you have to lose?

What happened is probably one of two things: 1) the athlete/athlete's parents didn't tell the PAHS AD that they were going to this camp/participating in friendlies, and didn't ask for explicit confirmation of the sanction. If they didn't run this by the PAHS AD, the responsibility lies solely on them, or 2) the athlete/athlete's parents told the PAHS AD but the PAHS AD didn't get the proper and necessary confirmation of the sanction. If this is the case, someone at the PAHS athletic department has some 'splainin to do.

I guess there's one more scenario...CIF confirmed that the camp and the friendlies were sanctioned, but they in fact weren't...I doubt this was the case.

Posted by Sports R Good
a resident of Professorville
on Feb 22, 2013 at 10:59 am

What You Dont Get It doesn't understand is that public school sports are a career choice for many children as they grow into adulthood. How do you think Hope Solo made it to Olympic Gold? Do you think her high school team sang kumbaya as she let all the kids from the other team score goals on her to be "fair."

Heck no. She traveled around the country getting better. What about Michael Phelps? Andrew Luck?

Soccer, Football, baseketball are all "Cut" sports where you have to make the team and if you do you may not play because there are better kids on the team who play "travel ball." That's life. Paly has "Non Cut" sports where your kid can play no matter what ability. For kids who want to compete they put in the time and effort and do "travel ball." Those who want kumbaya there are leagues where no one keeps score - but they are not in high school.

Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2013 at 11:23 am

I think this is really unfortunate. From being in the community as a parent of a player (who did not make the team), I think it's tough to know for sure which scrimmages and camps or whatever are legal. I'm not the most informed, so I may be wrong, but I really do think the information available about whether something is legal or not certainly can be confusing. Ultimately, I can't say I'm a big fan of the "not my fault" / "not the kid's fault" language, because obviously it's someone's fault and who else should be held accountable, but still.

I do think we should make an effort to keep the club and academy players involved in the HS teams. It's fun to play well and it's great to have as many players playing for the HS team as possible. Who wants to play for a team where the best students don't even bother?

What I'd like to see is transparency and clarity about what's ok and not. And honestly, I'd like to have a Frosh-Soph team at Paly, too, so my daughter could have played. She's played since she was 5, for many years year round, and that's too bad that there wasn't a place for her. It's a popular sport. Let as many kids play as possible.

Posted by followtherules
a resident of another community
on Feb 22, 2013 at 11:40 am

Anon-pretty much everything (99.9%) is on the "not ok" list. This is why there is no doubt it should have been checked.

Posted by C
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 11:41 am

Dear people saying "it's fair" because that way all high school matches are level, or saying it's Paly's fault,
All other years past these scrimmage matches have been approved. According to another article, "The matches at the U.S. camp that began Jan. 26 were not approved because the national soccer federation submitted its paperwork just a couple of days before the event -- far short of the 30-day notice that the CIF requires." So, in other words, bureaucracy caused this (not a desire to even the playing field). The other two times were paperwork that Palo Alto should have been able to do something about -- this time, it's literally the sheer idiocy of other parties involved.

Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2013 at 11:41 am

followtherules, yes, I think you're right. Agreed.

Posted by Socialist for Travell Ball
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 11:46 am

I am laughing at the alignment of travel ball with capitalist virtue (but otherwise agree with everything What a Shame has to say). CIF may be ridiculously bureaucratic, but that is its nature. It is not going to change. Paly needs an AD who grasps that fact and gets its act together.

As far a travel ball being bad, there is notable lack of logic or fact to support the argument that travel ball "ruins" anything for anyone except kids that don't chose to spend all those extra hours practicing and playing the sport. If the assertion is based on an assumption is that travel ball coaches at Paly favor their travel players, there is evidence to the contrary. In fact, the school is lucky to have those talented coaches willing to put in the long hours involved in coaching a HS team for the pitifully small stipend they get. If TravelBallIsBad thinks those coaches need the HS job to help their travel teams, he or she does not know the facts and is cynically mistaken.

As a socialist, I could accept the argument that travel ball disadvantages those who can't afford it, but I am not going to accept that argument from TravelBallIsBad who has a kid in private school.

Posted by anonymous
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 11:48 am

Thank you C! Put very simply had someone done their job our kids wouldn't be paying for it. As others have stated this is a power trip a *#$** match between the governing bodies. CIF could have chosen to approve it. Also, Blaser could have left a message dont let this player play. How difficult would that have been.

Posted by Sports R Good
a resident of Professorville
on Feb 22, 2013 at 11:57 am

Anon - there is a JV Frosh-Soph girls soccer team at Paly. However, it was oversubscribed as well since, as you point out, it is a popular sport.

I think one big issue in this thread is some parents take issue with frosh-soph girls who play "travel ball" and go to nationals are being put on the Varsity team, miraculously changing it from a "demoted" team (thank Palo Alto Sports Writer)to winning the division and advancing in the playoffs. Some people think these kids should play a leisurely game instead of something more competitive.

Last year was about being "fair" and look what happened. This year the coach was probably told he had to win or find another job. Hey if I was in his shoes (with a car payment and mortgage) and a bunch "travel ball" kids showed up, of course I would take them and play them even if it meant some senior sat on the bench until them team was up 5 or 6 to zero. It's unfortunate, but parents will go after a coach who loses. If Hope Solo or Abby Wambach show up next fall as frosh, the entire Varsity team may be frosh and soph "travel ball" kids.

Posted by A Non Ymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:12 pm

When CCS charges people to watch a soccer game who wants to see a fair game where the team I am rooting for loses? Yes CCS charges parents to watch their kids play. Darn tootin' I want the team stacked with travel ballers, club kids, nationals, etc. even if my kid has to sit on the bench. I want my child to see what skills he/she has to develop to get on the field and learn what sacrifice that needs to be made if they want to play at that level. It's an eye opening lesson in life and why you need good grades if you aren't going to be a soccer superstar.

Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:23 pm

Sports R Good, Just to be clear, I was suggesting there be 3 teams. Some schools have 3 for popular sports like boys basketball, girls volleyball and football, etc. (Maybe more accurate names would be Frosh, Frosh-soph/JV and Varsity.) I realize this is a bit of a departure from this conversation, but maybe it would be helpful in facilitating and encouraging participation from such a broad group of good, hardworking kids.

Posted by Gypped Soccer Fan
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:23 pm

I went to the CCS game at Paly on Wednesday with my daughter because she has friends on the team. She pointed out Jaycee and the travel ball kids and they are amazing. I did see when we were winning 5-0 how the seniors were being put on the field to get some field time.

I am sorry the girls were gypped by bureaucracy. I was gypped by CCS for $10. Can I get my money back? Can the girls get something too.

Posted by ridiculousRules
a resident of College Terrace
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:24 pm

The CIF rules governing who can participate in high school sports are absurd. Why in the world should someone who loves their sport be prevented from participating in a national team tryout, camp or friendly during the sacrosanct high school season? High school sports are for enjoying your youth and your friendships. Why put up barriers for the elite athlete to enjoy that?
I was reading yesterday about Missy Franklin enjoying her last high school season while at the same time sometimes having to miss meets because she is competing internationally somewhere. The article also talked about how swimmers from other teams enjoyed competing against her even though they got beaten badly. Colorado, where she goes to school, obviously has more enlightened administrators. Here we are stuck with a bunch of miserable, failed bureaucrats in CIF.

Posted by anonymous
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:31 pm

I read in another article that it is only California and Michigan that have these absurd rules. Also , just as an FYI, high school swimmers can continue to compete in meets outside of school but have to do it as "unattached" - so no club or school affiliation.

Posted by Responsibility
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:33 pm

It is the responsibility of the principal to monitor these things. It's time for some accountability at Paly!

Posted by AnotherAnonymous
a resident of another community
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:40 pm

ridiculousRules-it's not that Colorado has more enlightened administrators that enabled Missy Franklin to compete internationally. In order for Missy to compete at any non-high school meets and still be eligible, she would have had to complete the proper paperwork and "unattach" herself from any club affiliation. This also means she would not be able to represent the US at any swim meet during her high school season. NCAA has similar rules.

Posted by What a Shame
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm

Thank you for the laughs, "A Non Ymous" and "Gypped". I agree with you both. $10 to see the game? What a racket.

@Responsibility: It is NOT the principal's responsibility to "monitor these things"! Principals have to do some delegating! This is not a school where sports takes priority. It's unjust to always accuse the principal when anything goes wrong. However, Principal Winston should consider replacing Coach Hansen as AD. Coach Hansen has proved that his only value is to be the football coach because he has no admistrative talents and he has had plenty of time to prove it. Over the years, I continue to read about administrative issues, from Paly baseball coaches to LAX players and everything in between.

Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm

"Neither the student, AD, nor coaches were notified the camp was not approved by CIF. The net result is we played an ineligible player, which resulted in our being forced to forfeit. We have already talked to CCS and have been told this decision is final. This all came to our attention late last night and we acted as quickly as possible. We were praised by CCS for our integrity and support of student-athletes."

Wait, what was CCS doing between late January and the date of this CCS tournament game. Blaser sends a text 15 minutes before the game to sday there is aproblem, but not what it was? Didn't say- "your player is ineligible- dont play her? Yes poorly handled.

I suppose Paly could have called CCS and ASKED whether the January camp was sanctioned, and I am sure they will in the future, but CCS had known about the camp from prior years, and probably had heard through the grapevine from CIF that the paperwork was late this year and rejected. Why didn't CCS tell Paly about the f up? And why wouldn;t USSF tell the California player sin the camp that it had screwed up the paperwork? Sure the p;layer would still have attended the camp, but at least they could have sat out games and not jeopardized thier HS team's polayoff eligibility.

Yes rules are rules, but rather than playing gotcha- you would think that CCS would at least try to help out its constitutents - to keep them from making preventable mstakes.

This has been going on for years.

CCS Board members (Blaser) are elected by the school AD's. Why in the world to they keep electing her?

Posted by CIF Crazy
a resident of Greene Middle School
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:54 pm

If this National game against Germany impacted 20 california kids, isn't that pretty much the entire national U-17 team that went to the game? So CIF is telling the US National Team, our high school kids can't play in these friendlies? That is absolutely absurd. What are we going to do? Field a couple of kids from New Jersey, someone from Iowa and another person from Florida or somewhere else? Have 4 or 5 US kids play the best U-17s from Germany? All because CCS and CIF want to protect our kids from "real competition?" Do you think those German girls went back to Berlin only to find out their high school games are forfeited because some two bit politician wasn't going to sanction their playing and representing thier country? Yeah right!
Califonia politics at its best! Thank you Nancy Blaser of Morgan Hill with the $200K annual pension.

Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Feb 22, 2013 at 12:55 pm

This is all so silly. First CCS said Rule 600 barred participation in all these winter tournaments/camps. Then someone figured out that you could just call the camp/tournament part of the National development program and you could participate. So then CIF/CCS says you have to submit paperwork way in advance, knowing full well that sports bureauocracy at the national level moves slowly. So US Soccer is late, and CIF says the PLAYER loses eligibility. Would it rweally have killed CIF toi allow an exception? If they are afraid of lots of exceptions, CHARGE ALOT OF MONEY FOR THE EXCEPTION, but don't harm the player.

Here it's even more egregious because the player still got to go to the camp, and its the innocent lesser HS players (who CIF CCS will claim they are trying to protect) who get screwed. Well done.

Nect time Lazenby- PICK UP THE PHONE- Call the refs, call the onsite CCS rep. DO something constructive.

Posted by Crescent Park Dad
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 3:20 pm

Reading comprehension appears to be a diminishing asset on this thread.

CIF and US Soccer are the two parties that have made this mess. CCS is a subordinate to CIF. The AD, Coach, Principal or the parents were not responsible for filing the proper paperwork and the approval. US Soccer dropped the ball.

Note - Paly is not the only team in California that was penalized by this situation.

Note - the team was not eligible for the playoffs as a result of the regular season forfeits that were imposed due to the national camp debacle. Plus their first win in the playoff was also declared a forfeit - so technically they should not have been in the game that was called off. So even if the CCS office called the Paly AD earlier in the day, the bottom line is that the team had to forfeit no matter what.

The Aussie male BB player - the parents withheld eligibility information which was revealed by a filed complaint from another school. Paly was not at fault, they were duped by the player's parents.

Lacrosse last year - the parents of the child did not file the transfer paperwork with the CCS office - this is a parental responsibility, the (new) school is prohibited from filing the paperwork. The coach and the AD should have done their due diligence to ensure that the paperwork went through; but the problem points back to the parents for not following through on a known requirement.

It takes money to field teams. All of the transportation costs, officials fees, coaches' stipend, uniforms, etc. comes from two sources: $150 participation fee and booster donations. It would be great to be able to field Frosh, JV and Varsity, but the money is not every school in the league would have to do the same, as the league by-laws determine how many teams are eligible to play.

CCS charges for games because they cover the cost for field/facility preparation/rental (when required), officials, security, bus transportation for the teams. The schools are not required to cover those costs.

Posted by JA3
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 3:29 pm

The last three comments -- CIF Crazy and Anonymous -- hit the nail on the head.

CIF makes a decision three (3) days prior to the Carson match in late January -- ruling the paperwork is submitted too late for consideration -- and yet, between such late January decision date and game-time Wednesday, CIF gives out no notice?

Ms. Blaser sends a inconclusive text message -- with no definitive guidance, just 'read your email' -- 30 minutes prior to Wednesday's kick-off?

Our National Team pool may not pull kids from California, given the CIF's rather-unique rules?

Something is amiss here.

Posted by Soccer Parent
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 22, 2013 at 6:09 pm

CCS (assuming they have a seat at the table) should advocate that CIF relax their bylaws regarding soccer national team program reporting requirements by next year.

Posted by Joe
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Feb 22, 2013 at 6:45 pm

To top it all off word on the street has a wcal coach waiting until last minute to turn in Tegan McGrady...lots of adult maturity from CIF all the way down to high school coaches...and who gets hurt???

Posted by anonymous
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 22, 2013 at 7:10 pm

Yes, and all the ODP (Olympic Development) players got to go to their camps with no penalties because the paperwork was filed. The CIF could have and should have approved this camp.

Posted by TA
a resident of Los Altos
on Feb 23, 2013 at 12:54 am

It's very simple - it's time for a change at the top. Nancy Lazenby must be replaced immediately! The 4.0 student at Santa Teresa represents our Country and the team forfeits the season! These bureaucrats representing the CCS don't care a bit about the welfare of the kids- just their own selfish egos that love nothing more than to punish these wonderful student athletes who will have to live with these ludicrous consequences forever! Get with the program - make these changes now before you damage anymore of these kids lives. This is pathetic!

Posted by Carrie
a resident of Downtown North
on Feb 23, 2013 at 8:34 am

Nothing has changed since my daughter went here 20 years ago! SAD for the kids.

Posted by Viewer
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 23, 2013 at 8:48 am

The only logical explanation is that someone waited until the day CCS started to report that these girls were at an unauthorized event. There should be some limitations set for reporting. CCS needs to take the strategic reporting as a violation as well.

Posted by PA Grandmother
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Feb 23, 2013 at 9:18 am

Deja vu. When I was a senior in high school, a long time ago, I qualified for the Women's National Championships in swimming. My parents scraped together $$ to send me across the country to participate. I did pretty well - two third places, one 4th and a 6th. When I got back home, I found out that I had been disqualified from swimming in the rest of my high school swim meets because someone had complained to the equivalent of CCS or CIF about my going to Nationals. Nothing changes.

Why shouldn't a athlete talented enough to be invited to national level sports training and competitions be allowed to do so? And play on high school teams as well? I'm sure the soccer player works extremely hard at her sport, as I did, and it's no easy job to play or swim at the National level and keep up in school. We shouldn't penalize these athletes for being standouts at what they do. They are good examples to other players if they work as hard as I think they do.

Posted by Mark
a resident of Menlo Park
on Feb 23, 2013 at 9:38 am

As others have mentioned, these situations have been going on for a long time. Blaser is a control freak and a big part of the problem. However, my impression is that the enablers are really the principals and vice principals, who often seem to view HS sports as more of a headache than a valuable part of education. They collectively are the ones who have the power to change CCS personnel and policies so that student athletes are not punished unnecessarily, but as a group they don't want to do that.

Posted by parent of HS
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 23, 2013 at 9:57 am

I happen to be a sport "socialist" at some level, sports are so important, more teams would be ideal.

However, I have only admiration for these top athletes. And this gotcha situation that has been played on them by these official organizations is sickening.

Someone please clarify - this pertains only to this year? Provided all the precautions are taken, and then some, these players are ok to play in future years?

Posted by Not the point
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 23, 2013 at 10:15 am

"Why shouldn't a athlete talented enough to be invited to national level sports training and competitions be allowed to do so? And play on high school teams as well?"

In most cases, they are. It just takes the national governing body of the sport to file some paperwork. The issue here isn't (or, rather, shouldn't be) whether exceptional athletes are prevented from maximizing their opportunities (because they aren't), but rather whether there should be some mechanism for handling minor mistakes (filing paperwork too late) that doesn't disproportionately punish the students. In my view, the "punishment" shouldn't have been disqualifying the athletes, but rather imposing a fine on US Soccer.

Posted by parent of HS
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 23, 2013 at 11:53 am

An exception could have and should have been made, not because the athletes asked, but rather to correct a mistake that was made by the ecosystem of "officials" who trade in the sport.

Posted by Fan
a resident of another community
on Feb 23, 2013 at 2:19 pm

The possibility of sanctions due to participating in the national camps was known for many days before the CCS play-offs began because the issue first arose in the Southern Section, which handed out sanctions. If folks were gambling that CCS wouldn't hand out sanctions, they lost that bet. If they didn't know it was an issue before CCS, they were living in a bubble.

Posted by Paly Parent
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 23, 2013 at 3:36 pm

Very disappointing that an administrative error on when to suit the paperwork ruine the season for 25 high school girls. Did the individual who made the mistake apologize to these young ladies....9"of course not. These girls were dealt an unfortunate situation with no adult taking responsibility. The Paly girls are owed an apology by the adult they didn't do their job.

Also, the parent of this child knows how the system works yet doesn't confirm and double check they everything is in order for jayce to participate in this camp and return to high school soccer. Why as a parent would you allow a situation that pertains to your daughter negatively affect 25 high school soccer players. Maybe the rest of these girls aren't stnthe national level but doesn't mean you should be allowed to take this away from them. Jaycee's parents and Jaycee need to apologize to the team---they knew exactly what was required and did not ensure that their daughters participation would not affect the high school team.

And Hansen, really? You get a text/email and don't rove Jaycee from the field before the game starts. What kind of AD are you? Ohh I forgot...if it doesn't have to do with your precious football team you don't give a damn so you. For soccer this season alone ou have forgotten to book the bus to an away game, forgotten to get referees for a home game and have allowed an intelligible player to play causing the team to forfeit the title. What the hell is the problem Hansen!!!!!!!???!!

The Paly Alto Paly girls team is owed an apology by every individual that made the mistake and let them down. This means CCS, national team representatives, Jaycee, Jaycee's parents and Earl Hansen. Lets see you redeem yourselves to there girls.

Posted by soccer parent
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 23, 2013 at 5:35 pm

The rules on this have always been clear and known. That's why some elite players decide to forgo high school soccer. Shame on the coach for not realizing and setting the team players up for a fall.

Posted by anonymous
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 23, 2013 at 5:44 pm

Soccer parent you are not really correct on this issue. This camp has been approved in the past and similar ODP camps were approved because the paper work was in on time. So, elite players (just not yet elite enough for National Camp) attended their camps. I know at least five girls (not Paly players) that attended. This a bureaucratic issue end of story. US Soccer only has to do this for players from California as CIF is the only entity requiring it.

Posted by parent
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 23, 2013 at 5:50 pm

Having a child who played during the the Noyola/Kershner era who were both national players, this was never a problem. Rules were followed, games missed and the team went on. I'm amazed that this is an issue. As for Hansen knowing what to do, unless it affected football or maybe basketball, he was uninvolved.

I'm really sorry, but elite soccer players and their families should know the rules and communicate them to the less knowledgeable. It strikes me that someone thought winning and bringing Paly back to the upper division was more important. Shame on them for setting expectations incorrectly.

Posted by parent
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 23, 2013 at 5:55 pm

Anonymous - this was an el camino playoff - 2nd tier compared to De Anza. Bureaucratic, maybe. But the rules are the rules. I suggest you try to change them if you don't like them. It's a slippery slope which we run into all the time. For example, Skelly and the school board thinking they can ignore students' civil rights.

It's high school soccer for god's sake. It's not like it would matter for recruitment purposes and in a few years, most students will have moved way beyond what happened to them in high school. Unless you are in the group of people who relive high school exploits in your 30's.

Posted by anonymous
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 23, 2013 at 6:01 pm

Again, people are commenting without knowing much about the Paly team. This is a very strong team with an exceptional amount of talent, not just from the player in question. The games that are forfeited could have been won without this player. So, no it is not the case about winning and bringing Paly back to the upper division. Paly is not the only school that made this mistake so there was clearly a lack of communication on the part of the governing bodies. Also, why should players not be allowed to take part in the National Camps? The only shame should belong to CIF and CCS - this is only and issue in California (Michigan too maybe).

Posted by disregard my post
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 23, 2013 at 6:34 pm

the post for the BOE does not relate to this thread, it's about the PAUSD Civil Rights violation discussed in another thread. Sorry,

Posted by PALY Soccer Parent
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 23, 2013 at 6:37 pm

As the parent of a team member of the Paly Soccer team, I just want to say, yes the girls are disappointed in the decision that was handed down by CCS. They are a talented and close knit group of girls and they will pull together and move on. No one on the team blames the player for attending the National Camp. The girls take great pride in one of their own teammates being invited and attending the camp. Rest assured that the team will regroup, train hard during the offseason and come back next season stronger and make their mark. It is a shame for the seniors to have their last game end on such a sour note. It is my hope & expectation that CCS will be more proactive and transparent to avoid a repeat of what happened this season. Afterall it is for the players and we owe it to them.

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