Discipline has been handed down in the wake of an on-court melee that broke out late during a Friday evening basketball game between Muskegon Heights Academy and Orchard View High School in Michigan.
In all, ten players — five from each school — were suspended for one game apiece after a fight broke out late in the third quarter between the two boys’ basketball programs.
According to Orchard View AD Leroy Hackley, it all started with a hard foul. Hackley told MLive.com that an OV player was knocked to the floor, and that the situation escalated. No punches were thrown according to Hackley, but some chest bumping occurred and players left the bench.
Three Muskegon Heights players who left the bench but were otherwise not involved in the fight, as well as two players who were on the floor at the time, are set to sit out a Thursday night game. Meanwhile, five Orchard View players who left the bench served one-game suspensions on Monday.
When the incident erupted, fans from both schools reportedly spilled onto the floor. After the situation seemed resolved, players and officials expected the game to resume, but fans from both sides refused to leave the court, and ultimately the game was called with 23.7 seconds remaining in the third quarter, and Orchard View ahead 68-38.
MHSAA rules say that players who leave the bench during a fight must sit out their team’s next game.
Muskegon Heights coach and athletic director Dell Stewart told MLive.com that the two players who were involved in the incident, including the one who reportedly started it, could face more severe consequences.
“They are receiving disciplinary actions that will be provided by our head administration,” Stewart told MLive.com. “That’s still more or less being finalized, but I’m pretty sure it’s going to be significant. I’ll put it this way — I’m sure our administration will address it fairly and appropriately.”