The Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop football team is forfeiting its next two gamesbecause of a "school policy violation" that stemmed from students involved in hazing.

The forfeits affect games scheduled Friday against visiting Norwood Young America and Oct. 14 at Waterville-Elysian-Morristown. They result from the GFW School District saying that while evidence does not support penalizing individual students, it wants to send a message that hazing by students will not be tolerated.

District officials provided a statement to parents who attended a meeting Wednesday evening. It said the district was made aware of an incident Sept. 29 and began an investigation the next day that found that students had violated the district's hazing policy. The statement did not say how many of the students were football players.

"During the investigation, this 'tradition' or horseplay, as the students have referred to it, did not reveal any physical harm," said the statement read by school principal Bernie Sauter. Coaches were not aware of the incident before the district learned of it, she said.

The team, with an 0-5 record, has 35 to 40 players, according to published rosters online.

PAUL KLAUDA