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TSSAA lifts ban on Wooddale but keeps ban on Westwood and Melrose

As the post-season approaches in the SCIAA boys’ basketball, the District tournaments are still in flux.

Wooddale, which had been banned from tournament play by the TSSAA, will play this postseason, now that the TSSAA lifted the ban. However, the postseason hopes of Westwood and Fairley are still in question.

All three schools were banned from postseason play for two seasons following melees that erupted at games played on Jan. 25. In both incidents, on-court arguments rapidly morphed into frightening scenes involving fights among fans.

Westwood’s appeal was denied, but they still have a couple of options left at their disposal. They can file an injunction with the courts to allow them to play as they appeal the decision of the board or they can ask for an emergency meeting with the full board to have their ban lifted.

“We are not going to sleep on this one. We are going to fight until the end,” said

Westwood head coach and Athletic Director Isiah Brown. “There is always hope that we will be allowed to play in the post-season. I just felt we got an unfair deal for our kids. I am for my kids. I am for Westwood High School.”


Fairley has also appealed the ban, but their case got postponed to so they could have their lawyers present at the appeals meeting. Head Coach Sylvester Ford Jr. hopes they can have an appeal before district tournament play begins early this week. If no decision is reached, the Bulldogs will forfeit any case to play this post-season.

Both Fairley and Westwood are having their best seasons in recent memory and they hope that their teams will have an opportunity to play this season in District play.

With their postseason hopes spared, Wooddale went on to play in the SCIAA county championship and were victorious in Kellon Lawson’s first victory in the championship game with a win over Raleigh Egypt.

This was the first time that Lawson won a game in the series. He was crown co-champions when he coached the Hamilton Wildcats, but that game was canceled due to snow and his and the Raleigh Egypt team were named co-champions.

Wooddale coach Keelon Lawson was excited to be back on the bench with a chance to coach in the postseason.

“Yes sir!! That was the whole purpose of coming back to coaching, knowing that you have a chance to compete for the state championship,” Lawson said. “Now it will be on us just trying to perform.”

Seedings for the Class A bracket has been placed on hold pending the outcome of the Westwood and Fairley teams.

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