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Vikings playoff bound despite controversy

Vidalia — Despite a controversial holding on the LHSAA 3A playoffs bracket, the LHSAA announced late Tuesday night the brackets that included the Vidalia Vikings baseball team as the No. 32 seed.

The parents of seven Livonia High School baseball players, who challenged if Livonia should have forfeited 18 games because of an illegal freshman participating, filed a temporary restraining order that postponed the bracket’s release.

When the LHSAA announced the news yesterday, Vidalia head coach Kale Davis thought, “here we go again.”

After a premature bracket announced Vidalia would be in the playoffs in 2013, a bracket was released later that day without Vidalia on it, getting Davis and his players’ hopes up for a nonexistent postseason life. With Livonia parents protesting, Davis found himself in a similar position.

“I had that in the back of my mind like ‘what if,’” Davis said. “I was just hoping we wouldn’t get snake bitten again.”

Despite the uncertainty, Vidalia held practice Tuesday with a “business as usual” approach.

Davis said his team deserved to get in with its 13-9 overall record and 6-4 district record. The Vikings head coach displayed a sigh of relief once the brackets were announced, and he immediately changed his focus toward the Vikings next opponent.

Vidalia travels to New Orleans to play No. 1 John Curtis at 4 p.m. today.

“If you plan on winning the championship, you’re going to have to play the best to be the best,” Davis said. “We’re going to give them a dose of William (Handjis) and Cole (Cangemi) and see how it goes.”

“The (temporary restraining order) was a result of the LHSAA ruling a student-athlete at the school ineligible because of a violation of the LHSAA eligibility rules,” according to a statement by the LHSAA. “The Livonia High School principal requested the initial investigation. An appeal of the ruling was filed and heard by the LHSAA Executive Committee, and the committee upheld the ruling which prompted legal action by the parents.”

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