Home Local Sports DIAA semifinal basketball games postponed until Friday, to be played in nearly...

DIAA semifinal basketball games postponed until Friday, to be played in nearly empty venues

Ber'Nyah Mayo repeats on the first team this season. (The Dialog/Mike Lang)

WILMINGTON — St. Elizabeth and the other schools still playing in the DIAA girls and boys baskeetball tournament will have to wait until Friday to resume their seasons. The DIAA has decided to hold the games with a very limited number of spectators, and the extra day was given to allow the host sites time to prepare.

The state championship games will be played Saturday at the home of the higher seed. Times for the semifinals and finals will be announced when they are available.

St. Elizabeth’s girls team, seeded fifth, was originally scheduled to play Wednesday night at the Bob Carpenter Center against top-seeded Conrad. That and the other girls semifinal, — pitting No. 3 Sanford at No. 2 Cape Henlopen — along with the two boys semifinals originally scheduled for tonight were postponed after the University of Delaware told the DIAA no spectators would be allowed. That was due to concerns about COVID-19, or the coronavirus. The DIAA chose to reschedule its girls and boys semifinals and finals.

Since the announcement to move the games from the university, four people — all with ties to the university — have tested positive for the virus.

All four semifinals were scheduled for tonight at campus sites, but they have been moved back a day. All tickets that had been sold in advance of the four games will be refunded. Those who purchased from participating schools should contact that school for a refund.

The other boys semifinal, which pits Sanford School against Appoquinimink High School, will be played at Sanford’s Hockessin campus. They had been scheduled to play at Saint Mark’s High School.

According to the state Department of Education, of which DIAA is a part, only the following officials will be allowed into the venues: essential tournament staffing; participating teams limited to the official party of 22, which includes players, coaches, managers, trainers and school administrators; game officials; and up to two parents or legal guardians of each player. Parents and legal guardians will not be charged admission.

No media will be allowed to attend, but they will be provided a link to watch the games online. The games will be livestreamed and available at www.nfhsnetwork.com, a subscription service. The cost is per month, which means subscribers can watch the semifinals and finals.

Updates will be posted as they are received.