After a vote by the PIAA District 6 Committee on Wednesday, versatile football standout Kyle Silk was ruled ineligible to play athletics for Ligonier Valley High School.
The ruling has been appealed by the school district, according to both District 6 Chairman Bill Marshall of Penn Cambria High School and Ligonier Valley football coach Roger Beitel.
Silk was among the statistical leaders last season and he helped United High School reach the PIAA quarterfinal round as a quarterback who also played multiple positions on offense, defense and special teams.
News of his transfer to Ligonier Valley High School, where his family reportedly now resides, became public in June.
Under PIAA rules, athletes who transfer after their sophomore year may face hearings to determine eligibility. United did not sign off on the transfer, which moved the matter to District 6.
A vote to declare Silk eligible received eight yes votes and nine no votes, Marshall explained. One member of the committee was absent due to training obligations, he said.
“We held the hearing after testimony was provided by both schools. We deliberated and the motion was made to grant eligibility to Kyle Silk,” Marshall said. “It failed 8-9. Given that vote, that makes him ineligible immediately.
“They had the opportunity to automatically appeal the District 6 decision to the PIAA,” Marshall said. “In that time the individuals are still eligible to practice. They cannot play in any competition.”
“The decision didn’t go the direction that we hoped, but we respect the process and will be appealing the decision to the PIAA,” Ligonier Valley’s Beitel said. “I believe 100 percent in my heart that this (transfer) was not for athletic intent.”
Mike Mastovich is a sports writer for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter @masty81.