Venue change: Panthers, Saints to play at Selma High

Published 11:47 pm Thursday, January 29, 2015

The upcoming basketball matchup between rivals Selma and Southside has a new venue.

The game, which was originally scheduled for Jan. 23 at Southside High School, will now be played Saturday, Jan. 31 at Selma High School. The Panthers will be considered the home team and will even wear their white home jerseys, but will be playing on their biggest rivals home court.

The date of the game was originally moved as a safety precaution after three schools in the Dallas County system were put on a soft lockdown last week following social media comments and events outside of the schools. The decision to change venues was also made with safety in mind, according to Dallas County Schools Superintendent Don Willingham.

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“We’re still being precautionary on what has happened,” Willingham said. “Nothing has happened in this week since then to make us reconsider but [changing the venue] was always in the back of our mind.”

Willingham said having a larger venue, like Selma High School, also factored into the decision.

Unlike Southside, where parking is more limited, Selma has large amounts of parking available.

Willingham said moving the game to Wallace Community College Selma and Concordia College Alabama were also considered.

“It is definitely going to alleviate the parking situation since we will be using the Selma venue,” said Southside coach Cedric Brown.

Brown said everything will function as if Southside is the home team, but the game will be at Selma’s venue.

The games will start at 3 p.m. with the girls game, followed by the junior varsity game and the varsity game.

Selma won the first meeting between the two teams earlier this season 64-39 at Selma High School.

Brown said no matter where the game is played, the Selma versus Southside rivalry is usually going to deliver with a good game.

“Both teams are going to come out and play hard,” Brown said. “We don’t have to do much coaching in this game. It’s a rivalry game so it’s all about bragging rights.”