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Local

Burkiewicz suspended for the rest of regular season

ANNAWAN — Annawan girls basketball coach Jason Burkiewicz has been suspended this week and will not return to the bench until the start of the postseason next week.

According to the Moline Dispatch/Rock Island Argus, the suspension is the result of private notes from Burkiewicz to a radio station reporter; those notes eventually appeared in a photograph on Twitter. In those comments posted Jan. 29 when Annawan hosted both Henry and Putnam County, Burkiewicz made disparaging pregame comments about an opposing team as well as the Annawan school administration. While the original post has been deleted, the comments still appear on Twitter.

In a released statement, Annawan Superintendent Joe Buresh said, "The Annawan District has the utmost respect and admiration for all of the opposing teams it plays and strives to encourage good sportsmanship and respect for others. The matter has been fully investigated and appropriate action taken."

Burkiewiecz had already been suspended by the school for Annawan's contest vs. Putnam County for previous comments about the officials following Annawan's fourth-place finish at the State Farm Holiday Classic. He did not coach the Bravettes games this week with West Central and Wethersfield.

In his statement, Buresh said Burkiewicz is "still the high school girls basketball coach at Annawan, has resumed partial coaching responsibilities and he will be coaching the team during games beginning Monday, Feb. 10."

Burkiewicz is conducting practices this week and will be coaching when regional play begins this week.

The Bravettes are top-seeded at the Wethersfield Regional, awaiting Monday's winner between Galva and Wethersfield on Wednesday.

Annawan, which placed third at state in 2013, is No. 1-ranked in Class 1A.

Burkiewicz has declined comment.

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