Share This Page

Leechburg, Winchester Thurston violate rules

| Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2012, 10:12 p.m.

Leechburg athletic director Mark Jones said he made a mistake by scheduling St. Gertrude's to play in Leechburg's basketball tip-off tournament.

By playing St. Gertrude's, boys teams from Leechburg and Winchester Thurston violated WPIAL and PIAA rules that prohibit teams from playing opponents that are not “sponsored and controlled by a public or private school or any not belonging to the PIAA.” The teams were in violation of PIAA By-Law Article XII, relating to “athletic relations.”

St. Gertrude's, from Vandergrift, is a CYO team and doesn't have a school.

“It was my oversight, and I take the blame,” Jones said. “I was aware of the rule, but I didn't catch it quick enough. It's embarrassing, but there is nothing we can do now. We have to own up to it and move on.”

Leechburg forfeited its win. The WPIAL will have a board review of the situation next week and likely will impose sanctions against both programs.

Leechburg beat St. Gertrude's, 53-51, and Winchester Thurston won, 43-41.

St. Gertrude's became involved after Saltsburg dropped out of the tournament over the summer, leaving the host Blue Devils searching for a replacement.

Deer Lakes seemed like a possibility, but a coaching change occurred there and so did the Lancers' tip-off tournament plans.

“There was no intention on our part to gain anything,” Leechburg coach Damian Davies said. “... It was an innocent mistake, and we feel bad about it.”

Bill Beckner Jr. is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-224-2696 or bbeckner@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.