Eastern Plains and Coastal Plains conference tournaments canceled

Published 1:58 pm Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Inclement weather earlier in the week and the sub-freezing temperatures expected for today has forced the cancellation of this week’s Coastal Plains and Eastern Plains Conference tournaments.

The decision to scratch the annual playoff warm-ups came after games scheduled for Monday, Tuesday and eventually Wednesday were canceled due to Beaufort County Public School closures. In the first round of the Coastal Plains Tournament, No. 4-seeded Southside was slated to face the No. 5 seed, Jones Senior, in Chocowinity on Monday and the winner would have earned a meeting with No. 1-seeded East Carteret in Bayboro on Wednesday. No. 3-seeded Northside was primed to face No. 6-seeded Lejeune in Pinetown on Tuesday with the winner earning a matchup with Pamlico County in Bayboro on Thursday.

Earl Sadler Jr., Coastal Plains Conference director and head coach of Pamlico County, the original host of this year’s tournament, discussed with Southside head coach Sean White and other county coaches Wednesday night whether or not the tournament championship should be pushed up to Saturday, consolidated into a four-team playoff taking place on Thursday and Friday or simply canceled all together. Due to transportation concerns, including the slick roads expected for today, the tournament was ultimately abandoned.

While saving the tournament was nearly impossible, players on Northside, Southside and other Coastal Plains teams will now have 11 days between the last game of the regular season and the first round of the playoffs.

NCHSAA officials will conduct, as planned, seeding day on Saturday and despite not having a tournament, East Carteret, Pamlico County, Northside and Southside have already earned playoff spots.

But for Washington, the cancellation of the Eastern Plains Tournament on Wednesday ends what’s been nothing short of a disappointing 2014-2015 campaign for the Pam Pack, which did not qualify for the state tournament. Washington finishes the season in fifth place with a 4-15 (2-8 EPC) record.

Washington was originally scheduled to face Southwest Edgecombe in the first round on Monday with the winner earning a matchup with the No. 1 seed, Farmville Central, on Wednesday.

With eight seniors graduating in May, including point guard John Whitley, who led his team in scoring at a 16.1 point per game clip, the Pam Pack will look to rebuild next season and call upon its jayvee talent.

For Northside and Southside, the first round of the 1-A state tournament gets underway on Tuesday at the location of the higher-seeded teams.