Safety concerns cause cancellation of 9A Tournament
In just another chapter of the rainy, bad weather prep softball season, the District 9A Tournament was canceled in the early hours this morning due to the ominous weather coming from the west.
Severe storms are expected throughout the day with flood warnings already being issued for much of Middle Tennessee.
The same bad weather scenario played out in District 10A overnight, causing cancellation of that post-season event at Houston County.
With the decision, TSSAA rules dictate that the number one and number two place finishers in the regular season earn automatic berths in the Region 5A tournament, beginning Monday.
Therefore; 10A number two seed East Robertson will travel to Forrest Monday and 9A two seed Cascade will pack up for a bus ride and an opening round game at 10A number one Houston County. All games begin at 6PM on Monday.
"We canceled the tournament early this morning because of severe storms coming from the west," said 9A tournament director and Forrest head coach Becky Cheatham.
Cheatham went on to say, "It was not just the rain, but the potential for severe storms that were our concern," she added. "We would never put the safety or the life of a child on the line to play."
"It is unfortunate that we could not play the games on the field, but we cannot control the weather," Cheatham said. "This has never happened before in my coaching experience. This is the first time not playing it out on the field."
According to Cheatham, District 10A called yesterday to inform them of the cancellation. "They are not happy either, but we had a plan in place and that is the way we had to go," said Cheatham.
The Lady Rockets (20-7) have not played a game since Wednesday when they defeated Community 10-0.
Asked if the long layoff and lack of games may have an effect on the on the field performance of her squad, Cheatham said, "It very well may effect us. We have had plenty of practice, but in games the team's focus may not be where it should."
"East Robertson is a good team, they are well coached, and they will bring their 'A' game to Chapel Hill on Monday," said Cheatham.
"If we play the way we are capable of playing we can play with anybody," she said.
Last season, Forrest beat the Lady Indians 2-1 at home in the region title game, earning a home game versus Summertown in a sub-state contest that they also won 7-1, propelling them to the Blue Cross Spring Fling and their first TSSAA Class A state title.
Forrest has now won every 9A regular season and tournament title since the realignment of the districts in 2006 and the Lady Rockets and the Lady Indians are the only two teams to play in the Region 5A championship game in that time frame.
The region results from those three years are:
2006 at Forrest
Forrest 2 E. Robertson 1
2007 at E. Robertson
E. Robertson 7 Forrest 3
2008 at Forrest
Forrest 2 E. Robertson 1