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Rocky Mount Prep appeals postseason ban, expect to hear back this week

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North Edgecombe's Erick Moss, left, is fouled by Rocky Mount Prep's Trevor Batchelor during the game Friday, Jan. 12, 2018 at Rocky Mount Prep. The Jaguars are awaiting word on an appeal to their postseason ban.

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By SAMUEL EVERS
Sports Writer

Monday, February 12, 2018

Rocky Mount Prep gave an appeal on Monday to the North Carolina High School Athletics Association stemming from an altercation during a boys’ basketball game at Weldon High School on Jan. 30, which resulted in the undefeated Jaguars being banned from postseason play.

The appeal was held via conference call, according to head of school Todd Pipkin, with the case to reinstate the Jaguars for the postseason being made by principal Maurice Moore and athletics director Josh Curley.

The school expects to hear back on the ruling with a decision at some point this week. Pipkin said on Monday that he and the staff felt good about the appeal, and that Moore “did a phenomenal job of explaining why we felt the need to appeal.”

The Jaguars are 20-0 and 11-0 in league play this season, having already won the Tar-Roanoke Conference. They were amongst the favorites to make a run at the 1-A state title game, a fact that, according to Pipkin, made the need to fight this postseason ban all the more paramount.

“It’s important for the kids. I know sometimes on the court and on the field things get heated. We ultimately said we were wrong for any kind of altercation,” said Pipkin, who played Division I football at the University of Pittsburgh. “We want to make sure kids enjoy their experience. (To continue the success of this season) would be a really big step as far as culturally for our school.”

The altercation occurred in the final few minutes of the fourth quarter against Weldon, and the game was called final with a score of 83-68 with time still on the clock.

The two were scheduled to play again the next night, but the game was cancelled.

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