Garfield coach cites safety issue after forfeiting football game
Garfield players refused to return to the field after their coach was ejected by officials last Friday, resulting in a forfeit of the Bulldogs' game at Lake Washington.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Garfield High School's football season opener at Lake Washington of Kirkland on Friday ended in a forfeit after the Bulldogs' first-year coach, Kelvin Goliday, was ejected and his team refused to return to the field.
Less than two minutes into the third quarter, after a Garfield fumble was recovered by Lake Washington with the Bulldogs trailing 14-0, Goliday called a timeout to talk to the officials.
"In my opinion the whistles were slow," Goliday said. "I called a timeout early in the third quarter to talk to the ref about maybe getting quicker whistles so that no one gets hurt. This was both sides of the ball. At the time the fumble occurred, I felt the whistle should have blown long before that."
He said officials wouldn't discuss the situation, so he kept his players on the sideline. After a delay-of-game penalty and two unsportsmanlike-conduct penalties, Goliday was ejected.
The Pacific Northwest Football Officials Association declined to comment.
"The timeout to call him over for a safety issue, I would have done anyway," Goliday said. "It was just the timing of it. I really think that would have changed the entire night. Being down 14-0, you haven't lost the game. It's early third quarter. You're still in the game. But what do I do? What do I do when I feel like I need to be heard at that time?"
After the ejection, the Bulldogs had two minutes to get a team back on the field. When that didn't happen, the game was ruled a forfeit.
"It was unfortunate the kids were not allowed to determine the outcome of the game, because it's all about kids," Lake Washington athletic director George Crowder said. "I'm not sure what the issues were on his side. All I can go with is my observation. It was a very typical first football game."
Garfield's football program continues to court controversy. Last year's coaches, Anthony Allen and Anthony Kelley, were forced to resign after playing ineligible athletes in Week 2.
When asked if he would do anything differently, Goliday said he regretted the timing of the timeout, because it appeared he was disputing the fumble, not asking to talk about a safety issue.
"My observation, there was nothing that would indicate that kids were in any more danger than they are in any typical high-school game," Crowder said.
An ejection results in an automatic one-game suspension, so Goliday won't coach the Bulldogs Friday against Sammamish, nor is he allowed to take part in the team's practices this week.
The school is also investigating the incident.
Mason Kelley: 206-464-8277 or email@example.com
Trending on seattletimes.com
Most viewed photo galleries
The Morning Memo
The Morning Memo jump starts your day with weather, traffic and news
Career Center Blog
Your Opinion Matters
Take our survey and enter to win $100. Enter Now!