Congrats to our champs!

Published 10:57 pm Friday, March 13, 2020

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Suffolk has two state champion boys’ basketball teams in our midst this year, and we couldn’t be more thrilled.

The King’s Fork High School Bulldogs and Lakeland High School Cavaliers were declared state co-champions in their respective divisions, each team sharing the honor with their would-be opponents in the games that would have been played Friday. The remainder of the state tournament was canceled Thursday due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

It didn’t happen the way the players and coaches wanted, and a lot of people — including the fans — are understandably upset. Several seniors were robbed, due to circumstances beyond their control, of their last high school game and potential state championship glory — the kind that can only come after a hard-fought four quarters in front of a sellout crowd.

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We can only imagine how devastated they must feel.

However, we want both teams to know that you truly are the champions in our book.

King’s Fork High School had a stellar season, finishing with a 24-3 record. Coach Rick Hite led his team to a Class 4A region victory with lots of hard work along the way.

Lakeland High School also were regional champions in Class 3A. They had a great 18-8 record under the leadership of Coach Clint Wright Sr.

Both teams accomplished much this season. The coaches, the players and their families worked incredibly hard and had hoped to see it pay off — and pay off it did, until the final game had to be nixed.

Just making it to the state title game is a great accomplishment in a tough region like we have here in Hampton Roads. We hope all the players and coaches are able to look back on the season with their heads held high and not allow anyone or anything to detract from their accomplishments. We anticipate that the returning teams will give us just as much of a show next year.