Wortman reflects on TSSAA decision to cancel state tourney
By Zachary Reaves
MTN Sports Reporter
April 27, 2020
When Governor Bill Lee announced that the remainder of the school year would be canceled, it led to the TSSAA cancelling the remaining sporting events for the 2020 spring calendar. One of the many teams affected by the news is the Blackman Blaze boys' basketball team, who was set to face Mt. Juliet in the state quarterfinals on March 18th.
Blackman coach Barry Wortman believes that the TSSAA made the right call by cancelling the remainder of the tournament.
“I thought they made the right call and that they did everything they could,” Wortman said. “When the NBA cancelled their season and when they (TSSAA) announced that the tournament was suspended I had a bad feeling about our chances to play. But I thought they waited and tried their very best.”
With the season ending because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Wortman believes it is difficult to define this season as a success.
“We’re in uncharted territory, and it is an odd feeling,” Wortman said. “Our goal was to play on the very last day of the year, and we were two games away from doing that. It’s hard to define this season.”
Wortman believes that “togetherness” is what made this Blackman team a special group to be around.
“There are several things, but those guys played together and had great spirits,” Wortman said. “Those two things were the trademarks of this team.”
Blackman defeated Bradley Central 54-34 in their final game of the season on March 9th. They finished the season with a 26-3 record and won both the regular season and tournament championships in District 7-AAA.