WVSSAC Eliminates Sectionals From Basketball Postseason Play

Sectional basketball championships like in the picture above are a thing of the past.

The WVSSAC Board of Directors approved changing the format of preliminary rounds of the boys and girls basketball playoffs. The rule change will now combine the two sections of a region into one big regional tournament for each class. The field will play until only two teams remain. Those two schools will be declared regional co-champions and each will advance to the state tournament.

Under the old format, the sectional champion would host the runner up from the other sectional tournament. That would allow a team who lost in the sectional tournament to still be able to qualify for the state tournament. In fact, several sectional runners up went on to win state titles under that format.

For local fans, this format has a similar concept as the 15th Region’s Super Regional Tournament. The two big exceptions are that the 15th Region still had District Championship games, and there was ultimately only one champion per region.

Seeding will be done by balloting, and there will be tie breakers in place to help. In order, the tie breakers will be head-to-head record, number of wins in classification and above, number of total wins and finally a coin toss.

The higher seeded team will be the host school for each game within the regional tournaments. The eight teams who qualify for the state tournament in each class will then be seeded to set up that bracket.

It will be quite an interesting tournament next season with this new format.

Photo Courtesy of Karen Watts

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