Fans showed up at a high school wrestling state championship match in Georgia last month and got to see a full fledged mob brawl break out instead!
The absolutely crazy incident occurred at the Georgia State Wrestling Tournament that was supposed to decide champions in individuals weight classes, and overall team champions. Instead, the local FOX 5 News is reporting that the principals from the schools of students involved in the fight and the officials at the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) are now determining whether any disciplinary action will take place.
According to the report, it started during overtime of the Class 6A 170-lbs. 3rd place match between wrestlers from Osborne High and Pope High. Chancellor Jones, of Osborne, received a 1-point penalty for stalling in the closing seconds of the match. Pope High wrestler Jordan Colony was then awarded the victory, 2-1.
And then the controversy began.
Video appears to show Jones leaving the mat without shaking his opponents hand. It is also worth noting that these two high school grapplers have a history of very close matches with this being Colony’s third 1-point win over Jones this season.
As the dust started to settle from the match, Colony appears to still be on the mat, possibly getting his gear packed up or simply enjoying winning third place at the state championship. Whatever the reason, the crowd suddenly starts to scream and video shows Jones literally charging out of the tunnel from across the gymnasium towards Colony, who does not appear to him coming.
Both athletes quickly hit the ground and an all out melee ensues. Coaches, teammates, other wrestlers, referees and even possibly some spectators appear to have gotten involved, even if just trying to break it up.
Jones was immediately disqualified from the tournament and as a junior with one year of eligibility left, it will likely be up to the GSHA to determine whether he ever wrestlers again in high school once discipline is formally handed out.
In an interview with a local high school sports website, Colony reportedly said Jones apologized after the incident and they both shook hands. He did not comment on the disciplinary matters.
According to reports, the individual schools will hand out punishments as they see fit after full due process hearings are held. The GHSA will then likely make a final ruling about future eligibility and any additional punishments after meeting with district officials at a some future date, possibly April 3. The districts have both cited FERPA law regulations as prohibiting them from discussing any details about any punishments that have been handed out.
FERPA is the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and it meant to protect privacy rights of students, including their school education and disciplinary records.
[image via screengrab]
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