MOUNDS, IL (KFVS) - Several fights reportedly broke out after a basketball game at the regional basketball tournament Wednesday night at Meridian High School.
According to Superintendent Terry Moreland with Meridian School District, the fights broke out when the Cairo-Meridian game ended. He says the fights began in the lobby.
According to Pulaski County Sheriff Randy Kern, around 10 fights broke out in lobby, gym and outside of the building. Sheriff Kern says, it was "One fight after another, and the place went crazy after that."
Century and Egyptian schools were reportedly getting ready to play, but the game was canceled.
The superintendent says there were no serious injuries, and deputies were already on location. Sheriff Kern says one student had a broken hand. Superintendent Moreland called it a very bad situation.
According to Cairo Superintendent, Andrea Evers, there were two adult spectators fighting. She says they were not students of either school district.
Evers says it was an unfortunate situation that spiraled. She feels both teams played a wonderfully controlled basketball game and the incident is disappointing all around.
According to Evers, who attended the game, her full focus was on her students and her players getting back safely to the community. She said the school's bus was escorted by the police department as the bus took them home last night. No players walked home last night alone. Their bus was met by authorities to make sure the kids were safe.
"My heart is very heavy this morning because a wonderfully well-played basketball game is being over shadowed by pockets of violence and aggression not related to the players on the court," said Evers. "On behalf of our school district, we will continue to expect the best conduct from all players, participants and spectators."
"It's sad that it will be the schools, both Meridian and Cairo, and students who end up looking bad over this when it fact it was adults who started all the trouble," said Alexander County Sheriff Tim Brown. "The students and players had nothing to do with the chaos that started."
Brown says all matters of law enforcement are being handled by Pulaski County since it was on their turf.
There's no word if games will be played tonight.
The sheriff says arrests are pending.