Sunday, September 21, 2003

Post-game rowdiness raises concerns


Mount Healthy High, council add supervision

By Perry Schaible
Enquirer contributor

MOUNT HEALTHY - On the gridiron, the Mount Healthy Owls are enjoying a good season. But off the field, after the games, things aren't as positive.

The problems come as crowds go to post-game activities, said Mount Healthy High School Principal Jack Fisher. Rowdiness has followed games, reaching its height in a post-game brawl in one of the hotspots where youths congregate. One youth suffered a broken jaw.

"It's a concern. We've got businesses that want to close up Fridays because of it and we don't want that," said Mayor Ross Bittner.

The issue was discussed at last week's city council meeting, and city and school officials met Wednesday to discuss ways to handle the problem.

The schools and city agreed to have additional security at the next home game Oct. 3. There also will be increased street lighting on Adams Road.

Fisher said that the people causing problems are not students.

"Most of the time, the kids are just there to watch the football game and don't want to get anything started, but sometimes it just happens," said Amy Criswell, a senior at Mount Healthy.

A suggestion to change future games to Saturday afternoons, posed at the council meeting last week, was opposed by school officials. They said that might hurt an already struggling athletic department and undercut growing excitement about the team.

There's no doubt that the football excitement (has) returned to Mt. Healthy and we like to see that," Bittner said.

Some students think the concerns are overblown.

"Our safety is secure," said senior Kerri Potter, noting increased security at games. "Nothing's going to happen to us."




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