SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — After numerous changes on and off the court, the Crossover Classic tips off tomorrow at the Sanford Pentagon.
The college basketball season tips off tomorrow, including four games at the Crossover Classic.
“There were some struggles for sure, but we always had the ultimate goal to kick off college basketball here at Sanford Pentagon and that’s what we’ve done,” Tournament Director Lee Miller-Tooley said.
Wichita State withdrew Monday after multiple players tested positive for COVID-19 upon arrival, after testing negative over the weekend.
“Upon arrival, they were tested again to confirm those negative tests and that was when their players were confirmed positive for COVID-19. At that point, those players were isolated, they were retested to rule out a false-positive and subsequently eliminated from the tournament,” Jesse Smith said.
“Two of the folks on their inner-bubble so to speak turned positive in the time between that test and this test. I think it was prudent of us to go ahead and repeat a test, just to make sure that there hadn’t been anything unusual on our end, but both players did indeed confirm that test was positive by their subsequent test,” Dr. Jeremy Cauwels said.
Virginia Commonwealth was waiting in the wings. Tournament Director Lee Miller-Tooley has worked with the Rams twice in the past.
“It was fortunate timing. We were able to replace Wichita State within ten minutes, so they booked their charter last night, they’ve just landed, so it was a little bit of luck, it was a little bit of good fortune, but just a year’s worth of relationship that was in the making that really made the phone call pretty easy,” Miller-Tooley said.
The Pentagon was eager to put on a show, but the decision to not allow fans into the event was also made on Monday.
“The safety of our community, the safety of the teams, and the safety of our staff here is paramount to that, and we wanted to honor that decision and it was the right decision,” Smith said.
Coming up on tonight’s Eye on KELOLAND at ten, Travis Fossing shows us what it took for the Sanford Pentagon to host the Crossover Classic, and why fans aren’t allowed.