Fight at 7th and 8th grade game being investigated

By Frank Lewis - [email protected]

A fight that broke out among adults and escalated to include players at a 7th and 8th grade basketball game at Clay Local Schools Monday is being investigated. The fight broke out following a game between Clay and Symmes Valley.

“There was an altercation and I had two athletic administrators over there,” Principal Todd Warnock said. “There was an altercation between parents. There were a couple of punches thrown.”

Warnock said there was quick response to the incident.

“Three deputies from he Scioto County Sheriff’s Office came and they were here within minutes,” Warnock said. “They pretty much dealt with a lot of what went on afterwards. They took statements from a couple of folks and they’ve requested the video. We have five cameras in the gym area, so they’ve asked to have a video of the event.”

Captain John Murphy of the Scioto County Sheriff’s Office said the incident is under investigation.

While reports were incomplete, Murphy told the Daily Times the incident occurred over some cheering by people in the stands and that cheering escalated.

“It started off more or less in the stands,” Murphy said. “It was a disagreement about some things that were going on and one thing led to another. It was parents of opposing teams but also basketball players got involved as well.”

Murphy said no final determination as to specific individuals involved has been made.

“Officers are still waiting on statements and videos from the school to see where it goes before it’s looked at for charges or anything,” Murphy said. “It looked like it got pretty involved with parents and players. There is a report on file. We do have witness statements. However, we’re still waiting on other witness statements. We’re also waiting on videos from the school.”

Warnock, who was at a girls varsity game at the time, said the athletic director called him and he came over as soon as he was summoned. He said he has already talked with officials at Symmes Valley.

“They’re good folks. We’re good folks,” Warnock said. “Darrell Humphries is the new superintendent and he was actually here.”

Warnock said a couple of people had scratches, but there were no serious injuries.

“People from the squad were here at the game and there were no injuries,” Warnock said. “It’s always a big deal when something happens at a basketball game. We’re supposed to be playing basketball, but thank goodness we had two athletic administrators over there and they did a great job keeping people separated and kept it from getting out of hand.”

Clay Superintendent Tony Mantell was out of town at the time of the incident, but the Daily Times caught up with him Tuesday morning.

“We will cooperate with the sheriff’s department,” Mantell said. “I can’t give you any first hand information but we are going to go through the video and we’ll work with the sheriff’s department and if anything involved any of our students or the parents, we will deal with that. We are very concerned. I’ve been there 17 years and we’ve never had an incident like that. I don’t know what precipitated it but we’ll find out and it will be addressed.”

By Frank Lewis

[email protected]

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.