LHSAA disqualifies Zachary, Liberty from basketball playoffs following fight

BATON ROUGE — A bench-clearing brawl during a Zachary High and Liberty High basketball game this week was the center of an investigation by the Louisiana High School Athletic Association.

The LHSAA did not release a public statement Friday, but removed both teams from its power ratings signaling that both programs have been disqualified from playoff action.

An updated list of the boys basketball power ratings posted Friday afternoon lists both schools under the “Schools not playing in the playoff” heading.

Wednesday’s game was listed as a forfeit for both teams on the LHSAA website and each team’s games Friday are listed as canceled.

Zachary (21-6), the two-time defending Class 5A champion, was third in the Division I non-select power ratings that were released earlier this week. Liberty (17-7) was third in the Division I select power ratings.

The fight started with about three minutes left in the game. Video of the incident shows two players getting into a scuffle on the court before punches are thrown. Two referees tried to break up the fight as coaches rushed to the court to help.

The LHSAA is investigating a fight involving Zachary High and Liberty High basketball players (Source: YouTube)

Seconds later a scuffle ensues. The video shows a group of more than 20 players, coaches and what appears to be parents entangled on the basketball court. In the video, you can see adults fighting some of the players.

The video also shows what is believed to be East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s deputies breaking up the fight.

Video shows adults joining in on the fight before EBRSO deputies break it up (Source: YouTube)

There are multiple videos of the fight from various angles posted online that officials are believed to be using as part of their investigation. The YouTube video has been viewed more than 30,000 times.

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