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WCHS adds Friday contest

Chris Sullens and the Pioneers will be at home Friday against Franklin Road Christian.

Warren County will return to Charlie Dalton Gym Friday to play basketball.

The Lady Pioneers and Pioneers will face off against Franklin Road Christian at home, with action beginning at 6 p.m.

It has been a whirlwind few weeks for the WCHS basketball programs. The Lady Pioneers and Pioneers were in the midst of preparations for the basketball season last week when practice was halted Wednesday. The WC School System made the decision to send WCHS and WCMS to virtual learning through Nov. 29, while also halting athletics through Nov. 19.

When the decision was made, it forced WCHS to reschedule its matchup with Community, which was scheduled to be played tonight, Nov. 17. Instead, WCHS will take on Community Saturday, with action starting at 2 p.m. against the Vikings.

The Pioneers and Lady Pioneers planned on continuing on with their scheduled matchup against Moore County Friday, Nov. 20, but the Raiders had to cancel due to their football program still being in the playoffs. When Moore County canceled, the search began for a new opponent.

Franklin Road Christian stepped in Tuesday, giving the Pioneers and Lady Pioneers two Hall of Champion matchups to begin the year.

"Our boys are excited to begin our 2020 run," said Pioneer coach Chris Sullens. "The expectations are high for this group inside our locker room and we just can't wait to get on the floor and see all the hard work we have put in during the preseason pay off."

Lady Pioneer coach Anthony Lippe added, "At this point, we just want to get on the floor. As a staff, we have not been able to evaluate our kids in real competition so we need this time to see what we do well and what we need to work on. We are looking forward to add more game experience to our young lineup and hope to be more competitive."

Warren County will go into Friday's game with no preparation. The last time the Lady Pioneers and Pioneers were able to practice was last Wednesday, something Sullens discussed at length on the WCSA podcast.

The Hall of Champion games will have a strict attendance policy according to WCHS athletic director Todd Willmore. Due to the games being Hall of Champion matchups - where the TSSAA gets 50 percent of gate proceeds - season passes will not be accepted this weekend.

Also, WCHS is planning on opening up the game to immediate family members of players only. All spectators are expected to wear masks or face covering and maintain appropriate social distancing from spectators not in their family unit.

"Our goal is to give our basketball team an opportunity to participate in a much needed game atmosphere against competition as well as prepare for a capacity crowd of 600 for our opening regular season games scheduled for Monday and Tuesday of next week," said Willmore.

Warren County is scheduled to play DeKalb County Monday, Nov. 23 and Cannon County Tuesday, Nov. 24 at home.

Willmore noted that it is short notice to get the games together, but he's hopeful these two matchups will set up the school to be able to host more games this season.

"Due to several cancellations and postponements this week, we realize this is short notice and understand it may cause some aspects of our regular season games not to be available. Covid has certainly taught us to be flexible and adaptable in all we do. We appreciate your patience and support of our basketball programs," said Willmore.

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