Downingtown East notified Ches-Mont League president Michael Barber on Thursday that it is forfeiting its Monday baseball game against West Chester East because the Cougars used an ineligible player.

Downingtown East won the game, the last of the regular season, 5-4, to clinch its first National Division title. But Vikings coach Dean Owens filed a protest, contending the Cougars had used pitcher Matt Ternowchek in violation of National Federation of High Schools rules.

Ternowchek had pitched seven innings Friday then worked the seventh inning against East. Under NFHS rules, which the PIAA uses, if a player pitches in six or more innings in a day, he must rest for three calendar days.

The two teams were tied for the division lead entering the game.

In a release from the league, officials said that "upon review of the situation with both administrations, it has been deemed that Downingtown East did use an ineligible player in the contest. As such, Downingtown East has forfeited the game in question, resulting in a win and the division championship."

The two teams were tied for the division lead entering the game.

Contact staff writer Don Beideman at 267-815-0733 or dbeideman@phillynews.com.