UPDATE at noon: From Jay Dillon, Cobb spokesman: “I just got off the phone with Harrison Principal Donnie Griggers. He told me that the Roswell High School girls lacrosse coach has agreed to move back the start time of their playoff game against Harrison, allowing the girls championship soccer game between Mill Creek and Harrison to start at 1:00 p.m. The lacrosse game will now start at 3:00-3:30, or as soon as possible following the soccer game. Some of the Roswell lacrosse players have graduation parties to attend Saturday night as well, but they should be able to make it work out. A big thank you to Roswell lacrosse coach Sue Scheer for being accommodating so the soccer game could be moved and the Mill Creek students can attend their prom, and also to Mr. Griggers and Harrison soccer coach Steve Riccard for working so hard to find a resolution.
Hard to believe there wasn’t a solution to this problem: The girls soccer teams from Cobb’s Harrison High School and Gwinnett’s Mill Creek High face each other Saturday in a playoff game that will cause the Mill Creek students to miss most of their prom.
The two teams play at 5:30 p.m. at Harrison High, which is 45 minutes away from the Gwinnett school.
“For them to play at 5:30, it would be during the middle of prom before they even got home,” Mill Creek parent Wanda Hatfield told the AJC. “I’ve got a senior that’s just heartbroken. She’s a starter on the team and doesn’t know whether to play or what.”
Although Mill Creek has asked Harrison to change the game time, it’s not that simple, according to Cobb County school system officials.
That’s because Harrison’s boys and girls lacrosse teams are also hosting playoff opponents on Friday and Saturday, respectively. Saturday morning, four youth football games will be played on Harrison’s field before the lacrosse and soccer games are scheduled, Jay Dillon, spokesman for Cobb County schools, said Thursday evening.
Harrison’s principal, Donald Griggers, attempted to resolve the scheduling conflict, but was unable to due to the prior commitments for use of the field, Dillon said. Additionally, the Georgia High School Association rules prohibit games from being played on Sundays.
“We offered to play Monday. They don’t want to play Monday,” Mill Creek coach Brent Leitsch said by phone Thursday evening.
According to the GHSA brackets, which are posted before the season begins, the winner of the Mill Creek-Harrison game will play again Wednesday. Therefore, a Monday playoff game would give the winning team one day off before another game.
Mill Creek offered to host the game Saturday and give Harrison all of the proceeds, rather than the typical 50-50 split. But Harrison said no, after earning home-field advantage with a higher ranking.
“Harrison has worked with Mill Creek to try to find a resolution, but other events are scheduled with no possibility of them being moved,” Dillon said. “The schools will keep trying to work out an alternative, but at this point, it appears to be an unfortunate scheduling conflict.”
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog