Season ends for two Indiana basketball teams after brawl
The contest between the Hammond and Griffith boys basketball teams had to be ended early after a fight broke out on the court. A Griffith player was driving to the basket when he was fouled hard by a Hammond player, sending him flying into the wall. Players then started trading punches, fans joined the fray, and police cleared the gym once they were able to get the situation under control.From the Indiana High School Athletic Association:
• Both member schools have been suspended from participation in next month’s IHSAA Boys Basketball State Tournament. Sectional 17, hosted by Hammond Gavit, shall be redesigned as a five‐team tournament. Griffith and Hammond high schools shall not receive any sectional tournament revenue from this year’s tournament.
• Remaining regular season contests at all levels are cancelled. For all away varsity contests, both schools shall pay the forfeiture fee of $500 to each hosting school on their remaining schedules. Both member schools shall inform all remaining opponents at all levels of their forfeitures of these contests and copies of those written notices shall be forwarded to the IHSAA.
• The contest between the two schools of Saturday, Feb. 7, shall stand as a double forfeit.
• Each basketball coach (paid and voluntary) from both schools shall complete the Teaching and Modeling Behavior course available on the NFHSLearn.com website. Each varsity student‐athlete from both schools shall complete the Sportsmanship course found on the NFHSLearn.com website. Both schools shall produce the respective certificates of completion for these courses to the Commissioner for inspection. It is also strongly encouraged that all remaining boys basketball players in both programs complete the Sportsmanship course found on the NFHSLearn.com website.
• Both school’s boys basketball teams shall be placed on probation for the entire 2015‐16 school year. This probation is a severe type of warning. It is official notice that serious violations have occurred, are a matter of record and future, similar incidents will not be tolerated. Failure to adhere to the stated by‐laws of this corporation and/or playing rules provided by the IHSAA and the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) may result in additional penalties including, but not limited to, an entire school suspension of membership from the Indiana High School Athletic Association.
That’s a stiff punishment. The fight wasn’t pretty, but schools around the country have been let off much easier.
NWITimes.com reported that the junior varsity game between these schools was also littered with trash talking and some shoving. It was reported that varsity players from both schools engaged in some trash talking themselves over social media in the days leading up to the game, so there were signs of a brewing confrontation.
Click here to see video of the incident and judge for yourself whether the punishment fit the crime.