Photo from 2019 AAAA state cross country meet
Greer High School has been stripped of its 2019 4A South Carolina boys cross country team state championship as a result of an ineligible runner's participation.
The participant, as well as two female siblings, were ruled ineligible after it was discovered that they were not processed correctly to ensure eligibility. The male runner has since graduated, while the female runners were pulled from this year's team just before the Class 4A state qualifier.
Greer High filed an appeal for retroactive eligibility, but the request was denied by the league's appellate panel last week.
The school was fined $1,500, reduced from $3,000 after the appellate panel meeting.
Eastside High School has been crowned as the new state champion, while the Yellow Jackets are now runner-up. Greer was informed that a complaint had been filed due to ineligible participation on Oct. 30, 2020.
Statement from Greenville County Schools
Simply put, the loss of the state championship title was the result of an error in processing a student's transfer to Greer High School. On October 30, 2020, nearly one year after the championship meet, Greer High School was informed by the SCHSL that a complaint was lodged (by a school outside of GCS) challenging the eligibility of a former athlete (male) and two current athletes (females) who were from the same family. When the complaint was filed, the two sisters were on their way to state qualifier in Columbia to compete. Both girls were pulled from the meet.
During investigation, it was discovered that the three siblings' transfers to Greer High were not processed correctly to ensure their eligibility. Greer High filed an appeal with the SCHSL requesting the three student athletes be granted a hardship transfer retroactively. On January 21, SCHSL denied the request, but agreed to sanction relief (the fine was reduced) given the circumstances. Eastside High, which was the runner-up, now holds the state championship title, while Greer High becomes the new runner-up. - Tim Waller, Director of Media Relations, Greenville County Schools
Meets that are affected by the ruling from the 2019 season include:
Hare and Hound Invitational
Bob Jenkins SCTCCCA Coaches Classic
Region II-4A championship
Greenville County championship
4A upper state championship
4A state championship
Girls cross country meets affected from last year include:
GTC Tiger Classic
George Moss Cross Country Classic
Greenville County Championship
Check back later for more on this developing story.