CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The Secondary School Activities Commission isn't perfect, and thus, the system with which the state tournament is seeded and formed isn't.
A quarterfinal rout of a No. 2 seed by a No. 7 seed is not on what, however, the system should be judged.
The tweets flew after Ohio Valley Athletic Conference members Wheeling Central and Magnolia played for the fourth time during Wednesday's quarterfinals.
Some of the multiple disagreements came from folks not at courtside to watch Wheeling Central's dismantling of Magnolia, but I digress.
I've got news for you folks, Magnolia didn't get hammered 58-35 by the Maroon Knights because the teams played four times.
It was easy to blame the "flawed system" for the Blue Eagles' taking it on the chin against Central, but let's handle this one whine at a time:
- Doesn't a 25-point quarterfinal victory justify a second chance for Wheeling Central? Magnolia, the former Class AA school, is the second-largest Class A program in the state, while Wheeling Central - albeit a private school - is the 26th largest. Magnolia defeated Wheeling Central by 24 in the sectional 12 days ago and by a combined 40 points their last two meetings. Magnolia Coach Dave Tallman didn't blame the system for his loss, and neither should anybody else. Maybe he should blame it on Central being a private school. OK, just kidding.
- Last I checked, two games before that, Charleston Catholic earned its fourth win of the season over a rival - Buffalo. There were no excuses from Buffalo Coach Chuck Elkins, because his team wasn't able to take what it learned from the first three meetings to put it in play against a more experienced and talented team. How soon everybody forgets. I didn't see any complaints after Catholic beat the Bison again, and wouldn't seen any if Magnolia won for the fourth time against Wheeling Central.
- If you're looking for perfection, quit following sports. The NCAA tournament is flawed, the playoffs in every major professional sport is flawed and, shutter to think, even Kentucky's system is flawed. It's the one with one bracket and no classes, no matter the enrollment of the school.
- Regional representation is here to stay. Let's look at this logically. Before the seeding began in 2005, regions were matched up on a rotating basis and were playing one another at the state tournament. We were getting what should be semifinal or championship meetings at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday. Did both schools let students out of class to attend those? No. The attendance was 7,419 at the first session of the state tournament, thanks to these rivalries, not because Charleston Catholic and Hurricane were there. It was because Catholic was playing Buffalo, Hurricane was playing Beckley and Wheeling Central was playing Magnolia. It's the rivalries.
- The best eight teams? Obviously, that remains subjective. Is Beckley the best team? How about Martinsburg? Who is staying home that should be there? Wyoming East? Does anybody really know? Somewhere, somebody wants the top 16 teams in each region to battle it out for tourney spots: No. 16 travels to No. 1, No. 15 travels to No. 2, etc. Sorry, not realistic. West Virginia's wacky weather makes the postseason enough of a challenge.
- The attendance at Wednesday's first session is proof enough that this system is working ... to a point. It's not perfect. March Madness is defined by what is being done at the NCAA tournament. How much fun would it be to have No. 16 playing No. 1 in the regional for a state tournament berth? I'd like it, but realize it's not realistic.
Take away the personal stake - hoping Magnolia and Tug Valley would meet for the title; seeking that battle of two local teams in the championship, wherever you may be, or any other personal stake you have in the early-round results.
I'm pretty sure the Wednesday morning, raucous, semifinal Friday-type crowd enjoyed the tripleheader with which we were blessed.
The only ones who should care are the losing teams, and even they don't.
A friend and former co-worker tweeted: "The system is fine. Win, and you're champs. Anything else is just another excuse."
If I would've just used that, I could have saved a lot of space.
Suffice to say, this system is going to remain for some time. Get used to it.
Contact Assistant Sports Editor Rich Stevens at richstev...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4837.