One of the first lessons my parents preached to me was that life is not always fair.
The Alcovy varsity wrestling team learned that lesson the hard way this past weekend.
Even though we all know that life isn't fair, that doesn't lessen the sting that the Tigers program, its players and its coaches felt this past weekend after not being able to qualify for the Georgia High School State Dual Championships.
For those that missed the article this week, the Tigers were prepared at 6 a.m. Saturday morning to compete at the Area Duals just 20 minutes away at Newton High School.
The Tigers were scheduled to leave at 7 a.m. after individually checking weight and prepping for the event, but after 15 minutes of waiting, Alcovy coach Mike Mostek and the Tigers were still without a bus.
Meanwhile, weigh-ins were beginning at Newton for the other region teams and the clock was ticking. The Tigers had an hour to make weigh-ins before closing at 8 a.m.
Mostek was reassured that a bus was on its way, but transportation didn't arrive until 8:45 a.m. Mostek alerted officials at the Area Duals, but when he and the Tigers arrived, weigh-ins had closed at 8:30 by the head officials after Alcovy was granted a 30 minute extension. By GHSA rule, the Tigers could not legally compete after the head official closed the weigh-in session.
Even if the Tigers had competed after closing, and earned one of the top two spots in the region, like they were expected to do, the result may have been challenged by other region schools.
Alcovy Transportation Zone Supervisor Robert Nash was unable to comment on the transportation issue, directing The Covington News to Transportation Coordinator Randall Luna. Luna did not return our call to comment on the transportation mishap by press time.
Newton County School System Director of Public Relations Sherri Davis-Viniard issued an official release from the school stating, "As a result of this incident, internal processes in the transportation department are being reviewed to ensure such an event does not happen again. The occurrence is unacceptable and does not represent the level of service we strive to provide."
Unfortunately, there may not be another chance for the Tigers' seniors, who missed out on their final chance to prove to their region, to colleges and to themselves that they had what it makes to make it as a team to states.
Sometimes Tigers, and through no fault of your own, life isn't fair.