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The NYSPHSAA volleyball championships were held this past weekend and Saturday’s semifinal round lasted 15-plus hours.

The Class C and Class D rounds both started more than two hours late. I’ve been to the NYSPHSAA semis at Cool Insuring Arena five times and each time has run behind schedule but never that far off the pace. I’ll give you 30 minutes, maybe even 45, but anything beyond that is unacceptable.

Of course, it didn’t help that NYSPHSAA reduced the number of courts from three to two after switching from pool play to bracket play for the semis.

The people who put the tournament together really dedicate their time and effort, so instead of ripping on NYSPHSAA for this faux pas I will simply suggest organizers go back to using three courts in the future.

The solution is simple. Play the top half of the Class A, AA and AAA brackets at 8 a.m., then begin the bottom half of those brackets at 11 a.m. Do the same for the Class B, C and D brackets, starting at 2 and 5 p.m.

Give me the real OLD GLORY
Unfortunately, I can’t be as forgiving about the failure to appropriately recognize Veterans Day at the NYSPHSAA cross country championships the previous week.

Organizers displayed videos of the flag on two monitors on the football field instead of raising an actual American flag on a pole. Call me old school, but it means something when someone makes the effort to hoist the flag instead of punching a few keys on a computer.

Most of the people in attendance at the meet couldn’t see the flags on the monitors. The larger monitor was mounted on the visiting side of the field with its back to the majority of people in attendance at the meet. The smaller monitor was mounted to the press box and was a fair distance away from the crowd.

As the National Anthem started to play, people were still looking around for the flag. Nobody told them where to direct their attention, including the guy who ran across the field after the anthem played and screamed, "Where's the flag!"

Like I said, the larger monitor was facing away from the majority of the crowd. As for the smaller monitor, had people not started looking to where the music was coming from, they probably would not have noticed the flag at all.

Hopefully, NYSPHSAA gets it right the next time.

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