ROSSVILLE, Ind. (WLFI) — Friday afternoon IHSAA Commissioner Bobby Cox announced that the 2020 boys state basketball tournament would be postponed until further notice.
The change in reaction to COVID-19 concerns at least temporarily ended 64 school's basketball seasons. All sectional champions across four different classes.
For the first time since the 2014-2015 season, Rossville earned a sectional title. The class 2A sectional 38 champs were set to take on Wapahani in Saturday morning's Lapel regional semi-final when Commissioner Cox broke the news.
"It felt like a punch in the gut honestly," said head coach Cory Dunn.
"I was kind of in shock. You know me being a senior," said senior forward Dirk Shaw.
"It was tough. We've grown up playing together," said junior guard Reid Douglas.
On Thursday, Dunn and Rossville practiced like any other day, in preparation for a regional semi-final contest with a 20-5 Wapahani team. At that point, the Hornets knew only essential personnel and family members would be permitted into Lapel's 3,051 seat gym. Friday's news changed that quickly.
"You know me being a senior, that could potentially be the last game that I played Saturday at WeBo." said Shaw. "I mean it was just kind of hard to swallow."
"Knowing that we can't come back and play with Dirk, it's just rough to know that we can't play with those seniors if they do end up cancelling it," said Douglas.
If there's anything positive the 2019-2020 Rossville hoops team can pull from the tournament's cancellation, it's a championship.
"I remember the sectional championship game. At the beginning of the game I took all the starting five and I pointed at the crowd," said Douglas. "I was like, did you see what we did? And that was something special."
Cox and the IHSAA are still evaluating the return of the state tournament, if at all. As of right now teams are not permitted to practice in an organized fashion with their schools.
If the season were to be completely finished, Rossville finished the year with an 18-7 overall record.