, Muskogee, OK


February 27, 2013

Prep basketball notebook: Vian delayed as weather issues play havoc

This is the regional tournament that simply will not end for the Vian Lady Wolverines.

For the second consecutive day — and third since the tournament was scheduled to start last Thursday — Vian watched a game be postponed.

It’s been Vian (13-8) and Newkirk the past two days. Newkirk (13-11) is unable to travel and out of school due to the latest winter blast, and what was supposed to be played at Muskogee Civic Center, then Verdigris, is now set for another shot at 1 p.m. today at Verdigris.

The first winter storm blew the whistle on Thursday’s first-round matchups, which were instead played Friday.

“We’re just going by what they’re telling us at the OSSAA,” Vian coach John Mays said Tuesday night. “I don’t get it. I think we should have played on time last week and I was just talking to Jeff Walker over at Stigler and they had to drive from Stigler to Sperry and had no trouble on Thursday. I just think somehow it was possible to make it happen as it should have because now, it poses the possibility of affecting not only us but an entire area tournament.”

The winner of Vian-Newkirk is to play at the 3A regional at Fort Gibson on Thursday and will at this point, to get to state, have to play four games in four days. Both teams are unranked.

“I don’t think that’s fair because we haven’t done anything wrong,” Mays said. “Plus the girls get pumped for a game day and then get deflated and it deflates practice.”

Joehanna Morris, a senior on the squad, agreed practice hasn’t been as focused as it should.

“Usually on a game day we come in and go over plays at 8 a.m. and sleep in an hour as opposed to the 7 a.m. starts,” she said. “So since we’re thinking game day and don’t find out until we get to practice, it just is nerve-wracking. We’re antsy to play and it’s especially hard for some of our younger girls. It shuts you down a little.”

Should today’s game be postponed, it might be a blessing in disguise for Vian. OSSAA executive director Ed Sheakley said if the game isn’t played, then it would tip off on Thursday and the area tournament, as has been the case among some Class A and B area tourneys, would be moved to Friday, Saturday and Monday.

At least then, Vian would get a break in the four-day run.

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