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Storm tips off the NWAC Tournament

Chemeketa’s Men’s Basketball Team Photo.
Photo by Terri Jacobson

This story was updated on March 8 to reflect new information.

Chemeketa Storm Men’s Basketball Team was set to start their playoff run on March 7 against the Spokane Sasquatch, but the tournament has been canceled due to growing concerns over COVID-19.

The Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) Basketball championship tournaments have been canceled for the rest of the week. It was originally scheduled at Everett Community College in Everett, Washington starting on March 7, but, due to a student of Everett Community College contracting the virus, NWAC officials have postponed both the Men’s and Women’s championship tournaments.

In a press release, Executive Director of NWAC Marco Azurida said, “The NWAC Basketball Championship Tournament is canceled for the rest of this week. NWAC is working to try and reschedule the tournament for next week and is in communication with venues who may be able to host the championship tournament.” 

The team, led by Jaloni Garner, finished the season with an overall 15-13 record and a 9-7 finish in conference play, punching their ticket to the NWAC Tournament as the fourth seed in the South Region; however, that’s not an indication of how the team played, said head coach David Abderhalden.

 “A third of our schedule has been against teams ranked in the top eight, and so we’ve seen the top end competition, and we’ve hung with that and played with that and won a couple of them,” Abderhalden said.

“We feel good because we’ve played our first-round opponent, and, actually, all four teams in our pod, in the preseason,” Abderhalden said.

Abderhalden and the rest of the team expect the tournament to be competitive. Storm faced off against Sasquatch earlier in the year, with Chemeketa beating Spokane 105-98.  

For now, there are no updates on when the championship tournaments will be held. Details will be posted on the NWAC website.

For full press release and updates, visit: https://nwacsports.com/sports/mbkb/index. For postseason information, visit: https://nwacsports.com/basketball_championships.

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