Bus mishap a life les­son

The Covington News - - SPORTS -

One of the first lessons my par­ents preached to me was that life is not al­ways fair.

The Al­covy var­sity wrestling team learned that les­son the hard way this past week­end.

Even though we all know that les­son, it didn't lessen the sting that the Tigers' pro­gram, its play­ers and its coaches felt af­ter not be­ing able to qual­ify for the Ge­or­gia High School State Dual Cham­pi­onships.

For those that missed the ar­ti­cle this week, the Tigers were pre­pared at 6 a.m. Satur­day to com­pete at the Area Du­als, just 20 min­utes away at New­ton High School.

The Tigers were sched­uled to leave at 7 a.m. af­ter in­di­vid­u­ally check­ing weight and prep­ping for the event, but af­ter 15 min­utes of wait­ing, Al­covy coach Mike Mostek and the Tigers were still without a bus.

Mean­while, weigh-ins were be­gin­ning at New­ton for the other re­gion teams, and the clock was tick­ing. The Tigers had an hour to make weigh-ins be­fore they closed at 8 a.m.

Mostek was re­as­sured that a bus was on its way, but trans­porta­tion didn't ar­rive un­til 8:45 a.m. Mostek alerted of­fi­cials at the Area Du­als, but when he and the Tigers ar­rived, they learned that the weigh-ins had been closed at 8:30 by the head of­fi­cials af­ter Al­covy was granted a 30-minute ex­ten­sion. By GHSA rule, the Tigers could not legally com­pete af­ter the weigh-in was closed.

Even if the Tigers had com­peted af­ter clos­ing, and earned one of the top two spots in the re­gion as they were ex­pected to do, the re­sult could have been chal­lenged by other re­gion schools.

Al­covy Trans­porta­tion Zone Su­per­vi­sor Robert Nash was un­able to comment and di­rected The Covington News to Trans­porta­tion Co­or­di­na­tor Ran­dall Luna, who did not re­turn our call by press time.

New­ton County School Sys­tem Di­rec­tor of Pub­lic Re­la­tions Sherri Davis-Viniard is­sued an of­fi­cial re­lease from the school stat­ing, "As a re­sult of this in­ci­dent, in­ter­nal pro­cesses in the trans­porta­tion depart­ment are be­ing re­viewed to en­sure such an event does not hap­pen again. The oc­cur­rence is un­ac­cept­able and does not rep­re­sent the level of ser­vice we strive to pro­vide."

Un­for­tu­nately, there may not be an­other chance for the Tigers' se­niors, who missed out on their fi­nal chance to prove to the re­gion, to col­leges and to them­selves that they had what it takes to make it as a team at the states.

Some­times Tigers, and through no fault of your own, life isn't fair.

Smith

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