Parents, coaches react to teams caught throwing basketball game - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Parents, coaches react to teams caught throwing basketball game

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) - These high school athletes are fighting for the title of Region Quarter Finalists and the chance to advance to the next round of tournament play.

But basketball, like all sports, is more than just a game.

“We really teach our kids that the game is an extension in life,” Notre Dame High School Football Coach Charles Fant said.

Which is why parents and coaches were outraged when they heard about two teams playing to lose in Murfreesboro.

Smyrna High School played Riverdale High School in a consolation game on Saturday.

Officials noticed slow play, intentional turnovers and line violations. The referee said players were even being instructed to shoot in the opponent's basket.

Officials said both teams wanted to avoid playing Blackman High School in the region semifinal, which is an elimination game. As a top-ranked team, Blackman High School is considered a powerhouse.

Fant says what happened Saturday teaches players the wrong lesson.

“What lessons are those coaches teaching their kids? If you have this mountain in front of you, you say let's not tackle this mountain and lose and tackle something a little smaller?” he said.

Johnney Lewis' son is a sophomore and plays for basketball for NDHS. He believes parents and coaches should be teaching their kids how to win a game instead of dodging opponents.

“Life is not like that. If you go into work one day and say I'm not going to do that, you're going to get fired!” Lewis said.

Both schools have been ordered to pay fines and are banned from the post tournament series. They will also stay on probation for the next school year.

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