Gavin Wilburn, the reigning Front Row Preps Player of the Year, and the rest of his Weston Ranch teammates will have to be content with a Northern California title. (Samantha Schmidt/Front Row Preps)

CIF cancels state hoop championships amid coronavirus concerns

Joe Cortez

The California Interscholastic Federation, the governing body for sports in the state, has canceled this weekend’s slate of championship basketball games due to concerns about the coronavirus.

Weston Ranch’s boys team (24-12) was the lone squad from the Front Row region competing for a state banner.

The Cougars, who did not win a Valley Oak League or Sac-Joaquin Section championship, gained an at-large berth into the the Northern California Division II regional tournament and defeated St. Patrick-St. Vincent 62-61 on Tuesday to capture the NorCal crown. They were to play St. Francis (La Cañada) on Saturday for the state championship.

“This decision was made after careful deliberation and in the primary interest of protecting the health and safety of our member schools, fans, and most importantly, our student-athletes,” said CIF Executive Director Ron Nocetti in a state released at about 9:15 a.m. on the CIF website. “While we understand this decision is disappointing, we strongly believe that the opportunity to compete in this even does not outweigh our obligation to place the health and safety of our member schools and school communities above all else.”

According to Cal-Hi Sports, this cancellation marks the first time an state championship event has been canceled since 1945, when the state track and field meet was canceled due to World War II. The 1993 state track and field meet was canceled due to inclement weather, but the cancellation was later rescinded and the competition was held a week later.

The 1919 state basketball playoffs were not held because of an influenza epidemic.

For those that purchased tickets for the March 13-14, 2020 games at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, refunds will be made available at the original point of purchase. If tickets were purchased online via, refunds will be processed automatically.