Just days after the death of their teammate and friend 17-year-old Edmund Conklin, members of the Shelton High School Boys Varsity Basketball team learned Thursday school officials have forfeited their upcoming playoff game.
Shelton was scheduled to play Crosby High School in Waterbury next Tuesday during the first round of the Class LL playoffs. CIAC officials confirmed to NBC Connecticut they received the forfeit paperwork signed by representatives of both schools.
"In light of the recent tragic death of a member of the SHS basketball team, the decision was made – with input from the A.D., the Coach and the Principal to forfeit next week’s scheduled play-off game. CIAC officials have been informed," Superintendent of Shelton Public Schools Christopher Clouet said in a statement.
Clouet, Headmaster Dr. Beth Smith, and Athletic Director John Niski each declined an on-camera interview request from NBC Connecticut.
Conklin was a teammate of Christopher Gleason’s son on the basketball team. Gleason said allowing the boys to compete in the playoffs and honor their fallen teammate should be part of the community’s healing process.
“I think that would be a very healthy thing to do and it’s what most people would do, so this is a very odd situation,” Gleason said.
A flower memorial on Bridgeport Avenue marks the spot of the single car rollover crash police say killed Conklin. Investigators are trying to piece together a timeline leading up to the fatal accident and the official cause remains under investigation.
“All’s I know about Eddy is he’s a fine young man and it’s just a total devastation for anybody that knew him, particularly his family,” Gleason said, “nobody knows what his dad’s going through, and his mom and his sister, just total catastrophe.”