The New York Girls State Championship Basketball game will be played this weekend but some are saying the wrong team will be playing in it.

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The Hamburg Bulldogs Girls' Varsity Basketball team lost a tough-fought game in overtime to Canandaigua Academy 53-47 last weekend.  It seems like a pretty cut-and-dry statement.  But some claim they should have never gone to overtime in the first place.

Count the baskets

The argument is that if you count the baskets that occurred in regular time, Hamburg outscored Canandaigua 46-45.  However, when regulation ended, the scoreboard showed a 45-45 tie, and the game was sent to overtime.

How did the mistake get made?

In the third quarter of the game, a free throw somehow never got credited to the Bulldogs.  According to the Buffalo News, the Bulldog's bookkeeper brought the discrepancy to the attention of the official scorekeeper and the officials but it never got settled.

"During the third quarter of Saturday’s game, our bookkeeper noticed a discrepancy in the score. He brought it to the attention of the official bookkeeper and the officials at the moment it happened and during the next stoppage of play, which is the rule. It’s very disappointing that neither the official bookkeeper, nor any of the other section officials at the table, were open to a more complete conversation to resolve the discrepancy at that moment." - Hamburg School Superintendant Michael Cornell

If there was a mistake, why can't they fix it?

The mistake was once again brought to the attention of Section VI and the New York State Public High School Athletic Association the next morning, but Hamburg is being told that it cannot change the outcome of the game now.  The discrepancy had to be addressed at the moment of the discrepancy.

NYSPHSAA Executive Director Robert Zayas says that video is not used to change the outcome of a game.  Section VI Executive Director Mark DiFilippo backed up that statement by saying that "We can not go back in time to change the outcome of contests or events based on watching game film."

 

The problem is that you never know how the end of the game would have played out if that extra point did get credited to Hamburg in the third quarter.  Would Canandaigua have chosen to play the end of the game differently if they were trailing at that moment?  Would Hamburg have been able to hold on to that lead if the correct score was on the board?

It's a heartbreaking end to a terrific season for Hamburg.  Canandaigua will now go on to play in the championship game on Friday at 1:30pm.

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