Chugiak fires boys basketball coach after recruiting violation uncovered

Saturday, January 12, 2019 - 15:45
  • Jocquis Sconiers coaches the Chugiak boys basketball team during a game on Dec. 13 against Tikigaq at Service High in Anchroage. On Thursday, Sconiers was fired by Chugiak after it was revealed he commited a recruiting violation, then lied to administrators and state high school activities officials in an attempt to cover his actions. (Matt Tunseth / ADN)

Chugiak High School head boys basketball coach Jocquis Sconiers was fired Thursday, one day after a news story broke detailing a recruiting violation and subsequent cover-up attempt.

“Chugiak High School has released their basketball coach today and will be appointing an interim coach for the rest of the season,” ASD spokeswoman Catherine Esary said Thursday afternoon.

Esary said she didn’t know who the interim coach will be and said she couldn’t release more information because the situation is considered a personnel matter. A call to Chugiak High was not immediately returned.

Sconiers has also been placed on a one-year suspension from coaching by the Alaska School Activities Association, according to ASAA executive director Billy Strickland.

Robert Sheldon, the senior point guard whose transfer from Noatak to Chugiak was found to be against ASAA rules, has also been ruled ineligible, Strickland said. However, his eligibility could potentially be restored.

“Right now that’s what we’re still trying to work out,” he said.

Strickland said ASAA’s investigation is ongoing, and further action could be taken. However, it’s possible the player at the center of the investigation, could still retain his eligibility if it’s determine he had no involvement in the scandal.

“I think the student very well could have a case for pleading a hardship,” Strickland said Thursday.

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ASAA rules prohibit a player from playing at the school where their summertime coach works. Sconiers denied coaching Sheldon during a July AAU tournament in Las Vegas, going so far as to ask a former colleague to lie on his behalf. But the story unraveled when the former AAU assistant coach admitted the lies to a reporter Wednesday.

ASAA and Anchorage School District officials held a special meeting Thursday to address the situation. Strickland said at this time he doesn’t think the school was aware of Sconiers’ recruiting violation until it became public.

“I don’t think the school itself was trying to get away with something,” he said.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

Email Star editor Matt Tunseth at [email protected] or call 257-4274.

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