California HS basketball team stripped of state title after tortilla throwing incident

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Coronado High School has been stripped of its first California Southern Regional boys basketball championship due to a tortilla throwing incident that took place after the game.

The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) levied several sanctions against Coronado on Wednesday, vacating its championship and placing the school on probation through the 2023-24 school year. Coronado is also banned from hosting postseason boys basketball section or regional playoff games through the 2022-23 season.

The CIF’s ruling comes less than two weeks after a racially charged tortilla throwing incident took place after Coronado’s title game win over Orange Glen High School. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, at least two people threw tortillas at the team from Orange Glen after the final buzzer.

Orange Glen High School features a prominent Latino population.

Just days after the tortilla-throwing incident occurred, the Coronado Unified School Board voted unanimously to relieve veteran Coronado High School head coach JD Laaperi of his duties. Laaperi reportedly cursed at an Orange Glen coach after the game, which played a role in his firing. In 12 years as Coronado’s head coach, Laaperi posted a 215-121 record, including a 24-5 mark in this year’s COVID-19 pandemic-shortened season.

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The CIF’s investigation into the incident lasted just over a week before sanctions were handed down.