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Girls’ hoops finals back to Fort Wayne

The 2011 IHSAA Girls Basketball State Finals will return to Fort Wayne for a second year following approval Thursday by the IHSAA Executive Committee.
The decision was one of four significant items, three related to state tournaments, that resulting from the committee’s final meeting of the 2009-10 school year.
After hosting the state finals for the first time last March, a one-year agreement again has been reached to play the four state championship games at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum on Saturday.
‘Fort Wayne and the people at Memorial Coliseum were tremendous hosts for the girls’ basketball state finals last winter,’ said Commissioner Blake Ress. ‘The reception the teams and fans received made it a great experience, and we look forward to going back again next March.’
In addition to Fort Wayne, a bid to host the event also was received from Terre Haute which had proposed the games be played at the Hulman Center. No Indianapolis venues are available on next year’s date.
The executive committee also approved alterations to the volleyball state tournament format, which will be implemented this fall.
The Saturday morning state semifinal matches, which have been held at four different satellite sites since 2000, have been dropped. Instead, a one-match regional on the home court of one of the participating teams will be played on Tuesday, Oct. 26, to be followed by a four-team, semi-state on Saturday, Oct. 30, and four state championship matches at Ball State University’s Worthen Arena on Saturday, Nov. 6. Sectional dates (Oct. 19, 21 and 23) remain unchanged.
The new format, mirroring the recently-completed softball state tournament, will be available later this summer and will include host sites.
Also, the committee made an emergency amendment to Rule 19-6.3 of the IHSAA By-laws. Students whose school closes will be allowed to transfer to any public or non-public school serving the student’s place of residence. The new ruling goes into effect July 1. Previously, in school corporations with multiple high schools, rules allowed students to be given full athletic eligibility only if they transferred to another school within the same school corporation.