The Class A state baseball tournament remains in limbo after a series of legal moves Friday.
Wright City was placed back in the tournament after a ruling by a McCurtain County judge early Friday afternoon, then the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association announced later in the day that it would appeal the ruling.
Three first-round games were played Friday at Dolese Park, but the OSSAA suspended the tournament pending an appeal to the Oklahoma Supreme Court.
The appeal will be filed Monday.
The Lumberjax had to forfeit their opening-round game against Sterling on Tuesday after it was discovered that Wright City had exceeded the maximum games limit set by the OSSAA.
Wright City was traveling to Oklahoma City for the scheduled 6:30 p.m. game against Sterling when OSSAA officials notified them of the decision to appeal.
“I'm just extremely disappointed for our kids,” Wright City superintendent David Hawkins said. “I just thought we had an opportunity to go and let them compete and that's not worked out for them. So, I'm just shocked at this point.”
Some coaches in the tournament complained that Sterling would be at an unfair advantage because of the bye.
Now, Sterling or Wright City could be at a disadvantage if the tournament resumes with Wright City while all other teams figure to have all their pitchers ready to go if the ruling goes to the OSSAA.
“They're trying to do their job,” Sterling coach John Morgan said. “OSSAA is trying to hand down the punishment. In all honesty, OSSAA is trying to handle it the best.
“I don't care about the outcome either way. If they say play tomorrow, we'll play tomorrow. We'll get on the bus again and get ready to come up. Whatever the judgment will be, will be, and we'll be ready to live by it either way.”
Wright City was granted a temporary restraining order Wednesday with a hearing initially set for May 13.
The OSSAA went to court Thursday, and the hearing was rescheduled for Friday morning.
Rains in the Oklahoma City area washed out the first round of the tournament, pushing the opening round to Friday.
The semifinals and finals were scheduled for Saturday.
Rattan coach Ryan Cordell isn't happy with the way things have played out.
“I think it's just making a mockery of this whole tournament,” Cordell said after his team won its first-round game 15-5. “It's like that game there for example: We did what we need to do to save our pitching and get it set up for tomorrow.
“Now, if they delay it, everybody can bring back their best pitcher. It just kind of takes away from what the tournament is and how you prepare as a coach to go about winning it.”
Roff coach Ead Simon, whose team will play either Sterling or Wright City in the semifinals, said he sees it both ways.
“I don't blame Wright City for fighting it and I don't blame the OSSAA for doing what they're doing,” Simon said. “Everybody wants to be down on the OSSAA but it's a tough deal.”
Staff Writer Jacob Unruh contributed to this report.