Falkner-Walnut high school football game canceled due to Swine flu

WALNUT— The Tippah County clash between Falkner High School and Walnut High School, better known as the Joe Bowl, scheduled for Thursday night has been canceled and will not be made up after seven Falkner players have been diagnosed with swine flu.

According to Falkner coach Nickey Nance, there could be even more players diagnosed with swine flu and that has limited the Eagles roster to 14 healthy players.

Walnut coach Timmy Moore said that he has talked with Nance by phone all week about the situation, after the flu-like symptoms began to surface at Falkner, Monday.

“We don’t have any cases here at Walnut, so we’re pretty good as far as illness is concerned,” said Moore. “We’ll have to wait and see and deal with it whatever the case. We want to play, but looking out for the kids is the top priority.”

Larry Riley, the the assigning secretary for the Northeast Mississippi Football Officials Association, said there has been only one cancellation – the Walnut-Falkner game – so far in Northeast Mississippi.

“I doubt this will be the last one for this season,” Riley said.

Meanwhile, the Saltillo-Caledonia game is still on for Thursday night. Grey May said no one on his team has had flu-like symptons this week.

Bruce coach James Ray said his team is healthy and Thursday’s game will be played because he hasn’t heard anything about his opponent Vardaman suffering from any illnesses.

Itawamba AHS and Amory appear to be fine as they get set to play each other on Friday, according to both team’s head coaches.

Kedrick Storey/Southern Sentinel