LAFAYETTE — The LHSAA issued a ruling Tuesday that Lafayette High’s baseball team knowingly played an ineligible player this season, resulting in penalties for the school, the player and coach Sam Taulli.
The violation was self-reported May 6, a few days after the Lions’ season ended in a 5-4 loss to District 3-5A rival Acadiana in the state playoffs.
According to the LHSAA report, Lafayette High violated rule 1.12 regarding transfer students and rule 5.11.2 regarding knowingly playing an ineligible player. The player’s name was redacted from the report.
The school was fined $50 for the game the ineligible player appeared in and was fined an additional $350 for intentionally allowing that player to participate in a game. By self-reporting the violation, Lafayette High saved itself from harsher financial penalty.
The ineligible athlete will have to sit out the first game of the 2017 season, as mandated by rule 5.11.3 that stipulates a player will be ineligible for as many games as they participated in while ineligible.
As part of his penalty, Taulli is required to take the LHSAA Handbook Certification course. Lafayette High may also be required to officially reprimand Taulli and place him on probation for a calendar year from the date of the ruling.
Had the Lions advanced in the state playoffs, they would have been ruled ineligible to compete for a state championship.
Lafayette posted a 23-10 record, and it finished one game behind Barbe for the District 3-5A title.