Raleigh-Egypt, Wooddale boys basketball teams banned from TSSAA playoffs after fight

Published: Mar. 1, 2023 at 5:27 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The Raleigh-Egypt High School and Wooddale High School boys basketball teams have been banned from participating in the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association (TSSAA) playoffs after engaging in what the association called “unsportsmanlike behavior” during Saturday’s game.

Letters were sent to the administrations of both high schools advising that their basketball programs have been placed on restrictive probation effective Feb. 28 through the conclusion of the 2024-2025 school year, and each fined $2,000.

According to a report from unnamed officials who were present, the game was stopped with about two minutes remaining in the 4th quarter with the score Raleigh-Egypt 84 - Wooddale 69 due to an “unsportsmanlike incident,” after a coach was ejected.

TSSAA also received written reports from the administrations of both schools detailing witness accounts, which were included in the letters.

According to all three accounts, after the ejection, a fight ensued between players when a Wooddale player committed a “hard and flagrant foul” to the back of a Raleigh-Egypt player, resulting in fans and players alike storming the court.

As officials worked to assess the situation, a loud pop was heard, sending everyone into a panic and rushing for the exits. The noise was later confirmed to be caused by a firecracker.

According to one report, some took shelter in a storage closet when another pop was heard, causing them to hold tightly onto the door handle to prevent someone from opening the door. “We could hear people running and screaming as we hid in the closet,” the report states.

Those who hid inside the closet reportedly waited approximately 45 minutes until they felt safe to come out.

The Memphis Police Department eventually made the scene, where the Wooddale team and their families waited before being escorted to their cars.

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