BY KEVIN WOODRUFF
Montrose Area High School administrators recently extended an invitation to Elk Lake to accept Warrior athletes for its football team.
An invitation that Elk Lake later declined.
Montrose superintendent Michael Ognosky said that he sat down with Elk Lake superintendent Bill Bush expressing interest in having Elk Lake students come to Montrose.
“We were hoping for a cooperative agreement,” Ognosky said. “But Elk Lake declined after Bush spoke with people at the district.”
Ognosky said that he was hoping the agreement could be like one that was already in place where Montrose students went to Elk Lake to swim on the Warrior team.
The swimming agreement, which has been in effect since 2008, has been successful, according to Ognosky.
Bush said on Thursday that the issue had been discussed with Elk Lake’s school board and that “there doesn’t seem to be support for it.”
When asked the reason for the lack of interest, Bush said there was no “real reason” for not doing it.
“Students have a wide variety of offerings for athletics here at Elk Lake,” Bush said.
He also noted that there are also concerns for injury in the sport of football.
“It just didn’t seem to light the fire,” Bush said.
Bush also said that there are no plans for Elk Lake to host a football team in the future.
Elk Lake senior John Cron said that he believes if the option to play football was available for students, they would play.
“I think the interest is there,” Cron said. “I believe a lot of kids would play football. Right now other schools look down on us because we don’t have a football team.”
Cron, who plays field hockey for Elk Lake, has an interest in football and would love to play in college.
However, he isn’t sure what his chances of making a team are considering his lack of experience.
“I think it puts me at odds,” Cron said. “It’s going to be hard to make it on a team. I’ll have to walk on, and I know there will be better guys than me, because I don’t have any experience.”
Cron said that he wishes Elk Lake would have added football when he was a freshman, so that he could have played.
Now that Elk Lake has declined the offer, Montrose will have to go back to the drawing board to find ways of boosting its football program, which has only fielded about 30 players for the last 10 seasons.
“We probably won’t reach out to other schools,” Ognosky said. “We will turn our focus on improving the program.”