West Fargo superintendent cites "systems level issue" for soccer team's disqualification from state tournament

Photo by WDAY News Staff
Photo by WDAY News Staff

(West Fargo, ND) -- West Fargo School officials did not take questions from the media Tuesday afternoon, but the superintendent offered an apology to the boy's varsity soccer team at Sheyenne High School. 

"To our Mustang soccer team, I am so sorry that you will not be participating in your state tournament, and to your families, I am sorry that you will not have a chance to see them do so," said Beth Slette.

Slette apologized after the district announced earlier Tuesday that the soccer team was disqualified from the state tournament. The announcement came after staff at Sheyenne discovered one of the boys who played during the regular season was ineligible, causing the soccer team to forfeit 11 wins. The reason for the ineligibility was not announced, with the superintendent saying doing so would lead to identifying the student involved. 

Slette blamed the error on a "systems level issue" and says it could have happened at any high school in the district. Slette and the district activities director say they are now taking steps to making sure a similar problem doesn't happen in the future. 

The superintendent and district staff did not field questions from WDAY News First and other reporters at the press conference, saying it was "out of respect for parents and guardians of Mustang soccer players who have not had an opportunity to discuss the matter with Sheyenne staff".  

Original Air Date: 
Tuesday, October 4, 2022