The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for the Atlanta-metro area, and it is calling for 1-to-3 inches of snow for the northern Atlanta suburbs Monday night into Tuesday with the potential for more snow the farther north people would travel. The story gets worse going from Tuesday into Wednesday where sleet and ice are expected to enter the equation.
With the state basketball tournament expected to start on Tuesday, Feb. 18, getting all the region tournaments completed may force teams to play three games in three days to win a championship.
Heading into the week, the Class AAAAAA regions seem to have the best plans if weather should disrupt the schedules.
“We have an off day on Thursday,” said McEachern athletic director Jimmy Dorsey, who is hosting the Region 4AAAAAA tournament. “If we have to, we could play all (Tuesday and Wednesday’s) games on Thursday because (Cobb County) is out of school on Winter break. The one thing we would have to do is take Marietta into consideration, because they would still be in school.”
Region 5AAAAAA scheduled for Etowah High School is also considering moving all the Tuesday and Wednesday games to Thursday. But since Cherokee County schools are still in session, if games have to be moved Etowah athletic director Robert Van Alstyne said the tournament would be split between the school’s two gymnasiums and played simultaneously.
Like Region 4AAAAAA, Region 5AAAAAA scheduled an off day on Thursday, to avoid a basketball marathon to close the week, but Van Alstyne said there may not be a way to avoid it.
“If we have to move the games to Thursday, the winning teams will have to play three days in a row,” he said.
Both Dorsey and Van Alstyne said if today’s games are postponed —Region 4AAAAAA has four games and Region 5AAAAAA has two — the schedules would have to be looked at again.
For the Class AAAAA and Class A teams, rescheduling games may not be as easy.
Region 7AAAAA is in the best position as it played opening-round games on Saturday and are not scheduled to be back on the floor until Tuesday.
As of Sunday night, Sequoyah athletic director Todd Miller, who is hosting the Region 7AAAAA tournament, said an alternate schedule had yet to be finalized, but one of the options may be having championship and third place games on Monday.
“We are working on that right now,” he said. “We have three or four scenarios we are working on. We should have a plan set by (today).”
Region 5AAAAA’s tournament have the first few rounds at school sites before moving to Villa Rica High School for the semifinals and finals.
The Allatoona girls are scheduled to play New Manchester at South Paulding High School tonight. If they should win they will advance to play at Hiram on Wednesday. The Allatoona boys are scheduled to host a round of the tournament on Wednesday, it all makes for a logistical nightmare for Benji Morrell and the other Region 5AAAAA athletic directors.
“We’re going to have to get on the phones tomorrow,” Morrell said. “We don’t know what are contingency plan is yet. Whatever is going to happen, it’s going to be a mess.”
Region 6A’s contingency plan is also under construction. Mount Paran Christian coach Tab Griffin said the possibility of juggling the tournament schedule was talked about at Sunday’s region seeding meeting, but no decision had been made by press time.