High school coaches in state championship game face penalties

HARRISBURG, IL (KFVS) - It was only 21 days ago that the Harrisburg High School boys basketball team was crowned the 2A State Champions. But now both coaches are facing penalties.

Harrisburg high school's basketball coach is on probation for the next season after an investigation by the Illinois High School Sports Association.

It all stems from several incidents that happened during the class 2A boys basketball state championship game with Seton Academy.

An IHSA spokesperson says Harrisburg's sanctions are in response to coach Randy Smithpeters actions during the first half of the game.

"They never called a technical on me so I guess we had a relationship where we knew you know, where the boundaries were and that's the game," says Harrisburg's Smithpeters. "But 21 days later, I get hit with another standard that apparently that's not the game."

Investigators say he acted inappropriately toward game officials.

Smithpeters has been asked to complete a behavior-training program.

For Smithpeters, he just wants a fair call for both sides.

"I would just want to be treated fairly, and if that is the rule that is going to pertain to me and that is the process that is going to pertain to me, I don't understand why is doesn't pertain to every coach that was in the state tournament series," he says.

The coach of Seton Academy has also been place on probation for next year and is banned from post season play for the next two seasons.

Investigators say coach Brandon Thomas threw his medal to another coach and got into a verbal argument with a fan.

The contest officials have been reprimanded for failure to enforce the bench conduct rule during the championship game.

Harrisburg's Superintendent, Dennis Smith says he's saddened by the whole ordeal.

"We can't get back what we lost, the after glow of a state championship was gone after two hours, we can't get that back and that's the tragedy of it," he says.

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