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Sunday, Aug. 28, 2016

Sikeston refuses to play close games

Sunday, February 7, 2010

I really thought the Sikeston Bulldogs were going to have a close game for a change Friday night when they were tied at half with Poplar Bluff. I guess the Bulldogs had other plans.

Since their loss to Notre Dame in December, Sikeston is 9-0 and has outscored their opponents by 36.3 points per game. The Bulldogs' closest win was a 14-point decision over Blytheville on Jan. 13.

I keep thinking that Sikeston needs a game to go down to the wire to help them come playoff time because obviously you can't simulate pressure situations like that in practice. Every time the Bulldogs find themselves in a close game, they turn up the defense and run away with the game, so maybe that's how they deal with the pressure -- by eliminating it.

I can tell you one thing, it may be fun to watch but writing about their games can be a bit difficult. There are only so many ways to phrase "blowout" and I think we've used about all of them.

Sikeston does have some tough teams ahead of them on the schedule with Portageville, Scott County Central and Cape Central all next week followed by New Madrid County Central and Bernie the following week so maybe there will be a close game in there. It certainly wouldn't hurt to have one or two games go to the end so they have that experience if they need it in districts and beyond.

The close game could come Wednesday night when Sikeston and Scott Central take on each other at the Show Me Center. I will be interested to see how both teams handle the other team's pressure defense. I wouldn't be surprised to see either team win, but I think the game is going to come down to depth where Sikeston has the decided edge. And since we know they don't play games that go to the wire this year, I'll say the Bulldogs win by 10.

One thing I do hope is that the fans at the game are well-behaved. This season I have seen some of the worst examples of sportsmanship from fans that I have seen in my 12 years of covering high school basketball.

One example was the well-documented incident from early January when the basketball game was stopped while a of couple unruly fans were arrested and just this past week I was witness to two fans getting ejected from a game for yelling at officials. To make matters worse in that game, the fans cheered when the "fine examples" left the floor.

And those are just two examples. All season long I have seen fans here and there be told to leave because they aren't happy with the officials or because they are genuinely making a fool out of themselves.

It is a shame a couple of fans can ruin the whole experience and it is even more shameful when other fans celebrate the foolishness. It should be embarrassing to the fellow fans, not something to be celebrated.

I understand the emotions that go along with rooting for you particular team, but there is a point where you just have to have some maturity. There is nothing wrong with booing a call you don't agree with but why use foul language and make a scene? It isn't going to change a call and only makes you look like an idiot.

While some fans have made scenes, I have been impressed with the way players and coaches have handled themselves all season. I can't remember one player losing their composure this season, even when there have been questionable calls and things aren't going their team's way. So maybe some of the fans should grow up and learn from the examples set by the kids they are rooting for.