Joppatowne boys basketball forfeits UCBAC title game win over practice violations

The Joppatowne boys basketball team forfeited the UCBAC title-game crown it won last Wednesday with a victory over Bel Air because it was found to have broken state and county regulations concerning team practices, an school system official said Monday.

"The Joppatowne [boys basketball team] was found to have violated an MPSSAA and HCPS rule regarding practice," Harford County Athletic Director Ken Zorbach said in an email message. Zorbach did not detail the exact nature or date of the alleged violation. At press time, Joppatowne head coach Jermaine Head had not commented on his team's forfeit nor the infraction that led to it.

The Mariners, who clinched the Chesapeake (upper) Division boys basketball crown with a 10-2 mark, defeated Susquehanna (lower) Division champ Bel Air, 61-55, last Wednesday at C. Milton Wright in the UCBAC Championship matchup. Two days after the victory, it was announced that the Joppatowne team had forfeited its title-game win over an unidentified rules violation, and that conference crown would go to Bel Air.

This marks the third season in a row the outcome of the UCBAC boys basketball season has been impacted by rules violations. In February 2012, near the end of the regular-season schedule, Elkton vacated 19 of its 21 victories after it was found to have used ineligible players. One year later, Aberdeen, then leading a tight Chesapeake Division race, forfeited its first 15 games after it too was found to have used ineligible players.

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