By Steve ruman
A wild and premature ending to Tuesday’s game between the Windham and Warren John F. Kennedy boys basketball teams will have lingering effects for the Eagles’ basketball program.
At best, Warren JFK will be without the services of head coach Shawn Pompelia for its next two games.
Pomelia was ejected after picking up his second technical foul during the early stages of the fourth quarter.
Under Ohio High School Athletic Association bylaws, he must serve a two-game suspension and pay a $100 fine. He also must complete a teaching and modeling behavior course through the National Federation of State High School Associations Learning Center.
Whether or not the Warren JFK coaching staff or players will face additional disciplinary action will be determined by the OHSAA.
The game ended with 3:51 remaining in the fourth quarter when the Warren JFK coaches and players walked off the court. The decision to head into the locker room was made by assistant coach Marlon McGaughy, who assumed coaching duties in Pompelia’s absence.
At the time, Windham led 88-49. Just prior to the exit, a brief scuffle on the court resulted in technical fouls on each team. For JFK, it was their fifth technical of the game, and 25th overall foul.
McGaughy said his decision to leave the court was based on safety concerns, according to a story in Wednesday’s edition of The Record-Courier.
“I don’t want my team to get disrespected and I felt like we were getting harassed and threatened by some of the fans. I was doing what I did for safety reasons,” McGaughy said.
On Thursday, OHSAA Director of Information Services Tim Stried said the matter was still under investigation.
“We haven’t spoken yet to individuals from either school, which is something we want to do,” Stried said. “Also, we’ll review a game report which will be submitted by the officials who worked the contest.”
Game reports noted that the JFK players eventually returned to the court to complete the game, but that the three-man officiating crew had already left the building.