Holiday Classic will continue

Published 12:08 pm Thursday, December 28, 2023

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AHOSKIE – Promising increased security, officials with the 32nd annual News-Herald Holiday Classic have decided to continue the tournament in the wake of a fight between two adults at last night’s (Wednesday) game.

Hertford County High School Athletic Director announced this morning (Thursday) that the Holiday Classic will continue on a limited schedule.

At 6 p.m. today, the Hertford County vs. Gates County girls semifinal game will be played. It was during the first quarter of that matchup on Wednesday night when a fist fight between two men, both HCHS graduates, occurred in the lobby of the HCHS gym. There were no weapons involved.

Both men, who were not identified, were arrested.

When the fight erupted, fans in the lobby rushed inside the gym, prompting fans that were seated to react. There was a frantic rush by hundreds of fans who made their way towards the two back doors of the gym. One fan, seated near one of the back doors, was injured, requiring medical attention.

Meanwhile, the game’s referees directed both teams to their respective locker rooms. That led to a decision to cancel the remaining schedule of games, which included Wednesday’s nightcap where the HCHS and Edenton-Holmes boys were to meet in a semifinal matchup.

“We met again this morning and decided to move forward with a limited schedule,” Simmons said. “We will increase the number of law enforcement officers at the remaining games. The security level will be very high.”

Simmons added that Edenton-Holmes opted not to participate any further in the tournament. That decision means the Hertford County boys will advance to Friday’s Holiday Classic championship game where they will meet Bertie at 7:30 p.m.

Bertie’s boys advanced to that game with a win over Northeastern on Wednesday prior to the fight occurring. The Northeastern girls won Wednesday’s first game, advancing the Lady Eagles to Friday’s finals (6 p.m. tipoff) where they will meet the winner of tonight’s HCHS vs. Gates County contest.


About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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