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St. Rita's Charles Matthews slides under the hoop against Mount Carmel. | Patrick Gleason/For Sun-Times Media
St. Rita traveled to Honolulu, Hawaii to play in the prestigious Iolani Classic this past December. According to Illinois High School Association rules, schools may travel any distance to games providing students miss no more than one school day traveling to and from the competition.
IHSA spokesperson Matt Troha has confirmed that the Mustangs broke the rule on the trip to Honolulu.
“There was a misinterpretation of the travel policy by the St. Rita administration,” Troha said. “In reporting this, the school offered a self-imposed penalty of not traveling out of state next year, which the IHSA accepted.”
According to a source, the confusion rested on whether or not final exam days were considered school days.
The Mustangs have traveled all over the country since Gary DeCesare took over as coach in 2009. Last season they played games in Hawaii, Pennsylvania and Minnesota. Another year of high-profile national games was likely on the docket with Kentucky recruit Charles Matthews, one of the nation’s top players, as the main attraction.
St. Rita is expected to join the field at the Proviso West Holiday Tournament this December.