SHEPHERDSTOWN— After finding out nearly a month ago that it played a temporarily ineligible baseball player, Shepherd announced last week that the WVIAC has taken action on the matter. The conference will force the Rams to forfeit three games it won that the ineligible player participated in — two wins over Wheeling Jesuit and one win against Davis & Elkins.
The freshman athlete has become eligibile again and is currently a member of the Rams’ team.
Before the forfeits were called for by the WVIAC, Shepherd was in second place in the conference’s North Division with an 18-8 league mark. And the Rams were 26-15 overall and ranked fifth in the NCAA Division II’s Atlantic Division.
After the forfeits were put in place, Shepherd’s conference record was adjusted to 15-11 and its overall record made 23-18.
The Rams subsequently defeated Glenville in a doubleheader and moved their North Division record to 17-11 and their overall record to 25-18.
Following the two-game sweep of Glenville, Shepherd trailed North Division leader Seton Hill (26-3 in the WVIAC with a 196.55 power rating) and second-place Alderson-Broaddus (17-10 in the WVIAC with a 150.00 power rating).
Shepherd’s 17-11 WVIAC record left it with a 141.43 power rating and in third place.
The top four teams in the North Division final standings will all qualify for the WVIAC tournament. At the time the forfeits were announced, Fairmont was in fourth place with a 15-12 conference record and a 118.15 power rating.
The Rams had just three regular season games remaining, and those were at home against North Division rival Pitt-Johnstown. Shepherd had two games against Bluefield rained out and one conference game against Wheeling Jesuit lost to the weather. It is unlikely that any of those three games will be made up.