Farragut-North Lawndale game stopped by brawl, both teams disqualified from state playoffs

A brawl broke out in the final minute of the Class 3A sectional final between Farragut and North Lawndale on the West Side on Friday.

The Illinois High School Association released a statement that both schools have been disqualified from the state playoffs and that DePaul Prep will not have to play a supersectional game and will advance to the state semifinals.

“After speaking to game management and the game officials, the IHSA ruled the contest a double-forfeit and it was never concluded,” Craig Anderson, the IHSA’s Executive Director, said in a statement. “These are never easy decisions to make, but we believe it is the correct one. It is vital that we continue to send the message that incidents like this at high school contests will not be tolerated. They are unacceptable in society, no less a high school sporting event.”

The IHSA has told coaches from both teams not to talk to the media and not to tweet about the game. The following information comes from a reliable source.

The Admirals led North Lawndale, the sectional host, 56-50 with 41 seconds left to play. A Farragut player went up for a dunk and was undercut by a North Lawndale player. That set off the brawl, which involved players and fans.

“It was crazy as hell,” the source said. “It is sad the way it went down.”

According to the source, the IHSA made its ruling without talking to either coach and without seeing any video of the incident.

“It isn’t fair at all,” the source said. “[The IHSA] took the easy way out. Instead of tyring to figure out who did what, everyone is disqualified. They should have talked to the coaches and gotten some video. Not just said no one can play. We don’t get a chance to defend ourselves? You should try to assess the situation before you make that call.”

North Lawndale was involved in a playoff brawl in 2015 as well.

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38 comments

  • Kevin Williams

    Every person who loves the game should stand up and applaud Craig Anderson and the men and women of the IHSA who did exactly what needed to be done in this situation.It is time to put the B back in basketball.It is time for game management to step up and do their job. Take control before something like this or much worse happens.You can see it coming,if your doing your job. Out of control fans should be removed before it gets to this point. Game Management. The IHSA has taken a stance on what The ramifications will be, now step up and do yours.

  • Skywalker

    After reading all the responses, it is clear that the comments are rooted in a level of hatred for Chicago interscholastic sports. I would imagine you’re frustrated that Chicago teams continue to win across all IHSA class levels. Moving forward, I would recommend that you support your teams in improving their level of coaching and play. I don’t recall you complaining about the lack of parity and fairness when the CPS was only allowed to send one team downstate. How equitable was it to have a 100:1 ratio, when other schools districts had fewer than five high schools? Now, you’re experiencing symptoms of amnesia. At this point, the past decade has been dominated by CPS. It is revealed in the record books and maybe you should be a good sport and say congratulations.

    • so suburb fan

      the ihsa should scrap the four class mistake and go back to pre 2003 tourney. The basketball tournament is being killed by the cps. how many fans attend when the prohibitive favorites are cps? the Simeons and Morgan Parks bring maybe 50 paying customers. most of their supporters enter at pass gate.

    • PistolPete44

      Who couldn’t dominate with all the recruiting and AAU garbage that controls the CPL. And with that, a bunch of old farm boys from Nashville, who grew up together with their families almost sent you all home packing.

  • Sammy

    IHSA was right this time. Has CPS Admin or school principals made a comment? (agee/disagree/penalize those involved?)Those teams do report to an administrative office too right? There have been questions about whether the people in the cps sports office are even credentialed enough to run that office as administrators? Lightfoot-Preckwinkle need to look.
    Meanwhile CPS basketball is fast and intense and better than the rest. They will likely win all 4 classes (St Mel is in Chicago too). The best individuals are Rashaun Agee, DJ Steward and Miller of MP. Gordon got it because his team won, but Agee was stellar this year and Steward and Miller are NBA prospects. If Steward learns when to take over the game his team will win state next year. He has the skills and is a special talent.

  • Jb

    I’ve spent the better part of 50 years enjoying both downstate Illinois and Chicagoland high school basketball. I’ve lived in both venues, known hundreds of players and dozens of coaches and even coached programs in both. The venues produce completely different products – for a myriad of reasons ranging from school administration, available facilities, competing entertainment, budgets, community support, supporting (or not) academics, but most of all – beer of AAU Basketball. Watching the two different basketball products clash in state tournaments is fascinating to me as shown by yesterday’s St. Mel/Cissna Park and Orr/Nashville contests. Classic matchups that showcase the style difference in the games played in Cook County versus most of the other 101 counties across the state.

    This schism has been a huge challenge of the ihsa for decades, and while I’m not a big fan of our state’s high school sanctioning body and the power it sometimes tries (but fails) to fairly assert, balancing the competitive differences between urban, suburban and downstate schools is a difficult and thankless effort. Soon, as in a few other other states, these issues will lead to the disbanding of the ihsa and if you look around in other states that have reduced rules and oversight, the resulting product often ends up just as unfair, but in different ways. Sometimes the devil you know is better than the devil you don’t know.

    But why not disband the ihsa? Transfer rules are rarely enforced and when the ihsa does clip a kid, it’s usually a harsh application of an inconsistently enforced bunch of archaic rules (go on line and try to read the ihsa bylaws relating to transfers, boundaries, non-boundary schooling, etc.). The rules are flouted by the urban schools and the kids go live where they need to live (with distant ‘relatives’ or fake rental leases) to play where their AAU coach directed them. Sometimes this constant flux of players results in a good fit for a kid and a program, but frankly most often the kid is used for a couple of years to get wins and stroke a coach’s ego and when it’s all over his senior year, he’s got a 1.75 gpa and looking for a minimum wage job. The truth sucks.

    The ihsa can’t police all that bullshit, so it does it’s best with a flawed set of rules that are archaic and unfair. But how can anyone argue against the disqualification of NL and Farragut in the wake of violence at a youth sporting event. Someone in this string suggested the ihsa made that ruling so DePaul Prep would bring more money to Peoria. Come on man. The ihsa isn’t capable of doing those kind of revenue calculations even if they wanted to make an extra $500 off DP, and to suggest an administrative body such as the ihsa would tilt the scale towards a school in exchange for a few bucks at a hotel and concession stand just flat out ignores the responsibility of the adults in that gym where the fight took place. Plus, if you really know the demographics of the old Gordon Tech group (same folks, just a fancier name), you would know there’s not too many orange Pom-poms rolling into Peoria on a Mercedes Benz next weekend anyways. Apologies to Tommy.

    The downstate programs will continue to run solid programs with compromised athletic talent that gets ripped in the state finals against city teams – but yet talent that ends up at D2 and D3 colleges all across the nation. The city teams will continue to toil in a cluster of transfers, manipulation of rules and broken promises to the kids. The AAU factories will hunt for the ballers and the controversy will flourish.

    All of that said, let’s agree on one elementary thing. A bench clearing, stands clearing fight at a high school basketball game means one thing – the whole bunch of that group must be outed and suffer the consequences. Period. Ihsa at least got that one right.

    • OPRF Fan

      Jb, you clearly have a great handle on Illinois basketball. I completely agree with everything you stated. People really need to understand the power and impact AAU ball has now. Some good, a lot bad. I don’t know what the solution is, but it will be interesting to see where things stand in 10 years.

    • Roger Wolff

      Well said!

  • CCLFan

    I am no fan of much of what the IHSA does but this was the right move.

  • Alan Vann

    They did the right thing. And they should be eliminated from post season play next year.

  • West sub fan

    THIS IS AN EMBARRASSMENT
    I understand things getting heated
    I understand kids losing their cool
    But this is ridiculous
    The IHSA made the correct call

  • Will Bradford

    This is unfortunate and another black eye for HS hoops in the city.

    When will we ever learn and teach our youngsters that life is more than just a game? HS basketball seems to bring out the worst of the worst in our city. Fighting should never be tolerated and I am glad both programs are on thin ice. The fans who fought should also be arrested.

  • HS FAN

    S.suburban fan must be a Bloom, HF or Marian fan. 2 things don’t last long in the spring time. Dogs that chase cars and basketball teams that miss free throws.

  • HS FAN

    IHSA did its investigation and ruled as such. You want to know why. DePaul prep will bring more fans to Peoria than both Farragut and N.Lawndale put together. They will stay in overpriced hotels next weekend in Peoria. IHSA will make some money and Peoria will as well. When you have two public league teams ( which could happen if Bogan wins its Super Sectional) they lose more money than they already are losing. It’s not about race all the time it’s about another color Green. Furthermore some CPS schools shouldn’t host Regional or Sectionals ie N. Lawndale, Marshall (never).

    • PistolPete44

      Hey know it all, the IHSA is loaded with money, so sorry, not because they want to sell tickets. Secondly, rules say if you are in a fight you cannot play your next scheduled contest. So neither team is eligible as most if not all the goofs were fighting on each other. They can think about their actions while watching the state finals at HOME.

    • Tom Maggilicutty

      Ha ha. Nothing to do with players out of control and coaches that cannot do their job huh?!?

      • Nunya

        Now imagine they’re white.

        • JFris

          Maybe it was about actions and not race? That card is so overplayed now it has lost any relevance and does no justice to real racism. When racism is all you look for that’s all you’ll find.

        • PistolPete44

          are you saying only certain non black races are allowed by the IHSA to fight in games?

  • HS FAN

    So the chicago catholic doesn’t recruit. Mt. Carmel’s ex football coach was suspended multiple times for recruiting ( look it up). The catholic league cried foul when 3 of the best young basketball players in the city transferred to public schools. Phillip’s started to get kids from catholic schools who left for tuition issues and false promises and now its a problem. Now catholic football powers start crying. Listen, you don’t own these kids people. All school recruit players so sum folks need to get off the high horse. I went to Thornridge in the early 90’s McNabb lived a block from the school in Dolton but was recruited and went to Mt. Carmel. Whatever by Felisha!!!

  • South suburb fan

    Time for the IHSA to permanently Barr the Cpl from any and all tournament play in all sports. All they do is cheat, steal and generally create a bad environment. They are all to blame for this , but especially Young and Simeon. How long before Farragut and N Lawndale sue to get back into this years tournament. If you can’t behave or play by the rules without cheating, you can move on down the road. Simeon and Young should be stripped of the titles they won and barred from further play until the state levels the playing field by disallowing their recruiting. What the hell was Morgan Park doing by playing a shootout in Markham? We know they were poaching Thornwood and Thornton players. Time for the cps cheaters to be exposed and barred

    • 50 year alum

      Why no mention about Orr and their 8 transfers you know they were recruited either by coaches or players. Sorry state the game is in cheating is so obvious. Not to mention when teams in the CPL play 4A schedules and then are listed as 3A or 2A teams that why all the state titles no big accomplishment to go downstate and beat up on farm teams that population is so small. The CPL has ruined the HS game in so many ways. Until all these subjects are addressed it will continue to happen. Morgan Park a 3A team Orr a 2A team what a friggin joke. Glad to see I’m not the only person who believes this.

      • tyroneB

        Hey 50 Year alum,

        You wrote these comments under another article:

        “I love high level basketball and will admit it public league BB is great no whining about transfers or bad calls even though there were a few. ”

        “So with all my bitching all year about transfers I will say that No more complaining just great HS BB”

        You’re a joke, man!!!

        • Cougars98

          50 year alum —BUSTED!!!!

        • 50 year alum

          Actually tyroneB you are correct I don’t know what came over me. Guess I just had to say it one more time will tell you one thing about Pulblic League Ball best players I’ve seen all year Raushon Agee and DJ Steward best teams I’ve seen wereBogan and York saw over 40 HS games this year they were clearly the best players and teams
          I saw. First time I admitted all year CPL basketball just a different level of play faster,quicker more intense but I kinda knew that watching HS ball for so long so I will not make any more comments about transfers the rest of the year watching all 3 games at PW Sectional convinced me that CPL teams play a totally game. But York was pretty damn good too.

  • Lem

    Was there too. A Farragut assistant coach dragged a Lawndale player (one not involved with the play in question) towards the Farragut bench and had him beaten and slammed by Farragut players. They deserved the disqualification!

  • H.S Ref

    I officiated one of the Class 2A Sectionals this year that was hosted by a CPS school. The security was a joke and fans were allowed to walk on the floor and across the floor during timeouts and at halftime. We had to change in very poor conditions (no Showers) We couldn’t even get a bottle of water to drink at halftime. Fans yelled personal insults and swore at us. We put two fans out for this type of behavior but really 90% of the fans from both teams playing were doing it. It’s really sad.

    • PistolPete44

      I have also witnessed the same insults toward officials this year. I can easily see the reason no one would want to ref and take the harassment. So when is the IHSA going to crack down on the Principals and contest supervisors that let their fans and others do the harassment towards the y seem afraid to crack down on them because they want to keep their jobs as they are hired by the school boards. It is easy to change this atmosphere if the IHSA wanted to.

  • Ready2

    In 2015, NLCP beat Marshall but incident DQ both teams. St. Joe’s advanced on a Bye.
    So disappointed in a repeat!!!

  • H L Mencken

    If the IHSA made the decision, chances are they messed it up.

  • Coach Mike

    More action like this needs to take place, in order to set examples. Officials are in demand and the game is out of control. Highlights appear to show Farragut got short end of stick, but more tough love needed.

  • Nunya

    So when two city teams have a dust-up they get kicked out of the post season but when Naz cheats Simeon out of the playoffs the city team just has to take it. Ok.

  • William Edw Smith

    the decision was not the way to go ,, i was at the game i saw how the fight started

    • Matt

      William – if you were at the game, I’m betting almost all, or all of the players left the bench to participate in the fight? NFHS rules mandate an ejection if you leave the bench to fight. IHSA mandates a suspension following the game you get ejected. Both teams will have all their players suspended the next game, so this was the correct ruling.

      This just happened in Wisconsin too, a fight, and one of the stars left the bench to assist, was ejected, and suspended for the championship game. It’s the rules, period.

    • PistolPete44

      Rules say you do not fight back…end of story Lori.. so sit back, this a teaching moment to all,especially the parents and coaches

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