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Midwest forfeits rest of football season due to low numbers
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PREP FOOTBALL

Midwest forfeits rest of football season due to low numbers

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The Midwest Oilers announced Thursday they will forfeit the rest of their football season. Due to a lack of available healthy players, the school decided to forfeit its final three games after already forfeiting last Friday's game at Lingle-Fort Laramie.

"Safety is the main priority for our student-athletes at Midwest, and with low numbers it has been determined by coaches and administration that the remainder of the season will need to be canceled," Midwest activities director Mike Brainard told the Star-Tribune in a statement. "We value and appreciate the time, effort, and resources given by parents, athletes, transportation, officials and the Midwest community."

This was head coach Dean Kelly's first year as Midwest head coach, filling in after Ken Swieter left to join the coaching staff at Kelly Walsh. Kelly was previously principal at Natrona County, where he resigned in September 2014 following his role in an inappropriate skit performed by faculty. Despite his resignation he remained in the school district, eventually becoming girls basketball coach at Midwest in addition to football coach.

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Kelly did not immediately return the Star-Tribune's request for comment. Brainard told the Star-Tribune he needed to contact Natrona Count School District PR before speaking beyond the given statement.

This is the first time Midwest has had to cancel the remaining portion of its season since Midwest regained a football program in 1934. The Oilers did forfeit its game against Kaycee last year but finished the season. The Oilers also previously forfeited its season-opening game in 2013 to Farson, although that came by WHSAA rule after the Oilers already won 61-21.

The Oilers' program continued even after a gas leak forced classes and activities to Casper during the 2016-17 school year. Football returned to Midwest the following year.

Midwest was 1-4 this year before the announcement, having defeated NSI Academy, 38-32. Outside of that the Oilers were significantly overwhelmed and outscored 214-38 in their losses.

Follow sports reporter Brady Oltmans on Twitter @BradyOltmans

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High School Sports Reporter

Brady Oltmans reports on high school and local sports. He joined the Star-Tribune in July 2016 after covering prep sports and college soccer in Nebraska. He also contributes to University of Wyoming sports coverage. He and his dog live in Casper.

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