Six confirmed cases of the skin infection impetigo within its varsity and junior varsity football teams have resulted in Ocean Township forfeiting its scheduled home varsity football game against Neptune on Saturday. Ocean Township Superintendent of Schools John Lysko said on Thursday.
“We didn’t want to have the skin condition spread because of boys having contact,” Lykso said. “Equally important, was the safety issue. There were so many varsity team members not practicing, we felt we were in no condition to play against a team of Neptune’s quality and increase the probablity of injury.”
Lysko said Ocean has not had a practice since Tuesday. He said he hopes the team will be able to resume practice on Monday after all 48 player players who comprise the varsity and JV teams are checked by the Ocean school physician. Ocean is scheduled to host Matawan in a Shore Conference Class B North game a week from tonight. The Neptune game was also a Class B North game.
Lysko said the freshman game between the two schools, scheduled for Thursday, was also cancelled for precautionary reasons after officials from the two schools consulted with each other.
Lykso said the possibility of players on the team having some sort of skin condition was first noticed late last week. He then said those players were immediately referred to either their own physicians or the school physician. Lysko said the six confirmed diagnoses of impetigo came back a couple of days later.
Ocean played and defeated Manchester, 30-22, last Friday. Lysko said Manchester school officials have been contacted about the six Ocean players having impetigo.
Ocean is forfeiting the Neptune game, according to Lysko because “there is no room on the schedules of both schools to reschedule the game.” Ocean’s bye week is in Week 6. Neptune’s bye week is in Week 8. Neptune, ranked No. 2 in the Asbury Park Press Top 10, will improve to 2-0 overall and 1-0 in Class B North. Ocean will fall to 1-1 overall, 0-1 in Class B North.