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SHS hosts 2nd annual Christmas tourney

Starting today, Straughn will host its second annual 2008 High School Boys Christmas Shoot Out.

The shoot out will consist of eight teams from Class 1A, 2A and 3A.

Along with Straughn, teams from McKenzie, Kinston, Georgiana, Brantley, Goshen, New Brockton and Red Level will participate in the three-day tournament.

Straughn coach Todd Reynolds said the tournament is good for experience for the players to get ready for the most important games of the seson.

“It’s just a chance to get more experience for the players as we get ready for area play, which starts in January,” Reynolds said. “So, you try to get two to three tournaments. I couldn’t find a Thanksgiving tournament, so I decided to have my own.

“Last year, we had four teams and we’re expanding it to eight teams this year,” he said. “It’s going to be a pretty competitive bracket. Most of the teams have winning records and it’s going to be a real good opportunity — kind of like what you would call a mid major, giving a chance for these 1A, 2A or 3A schools to have a good tournament and trying to get their teams better.”

Admission is $5 per person each day of the tournament.

Reynolds added that there will be a “winners’ bracket” and a “consolation bracket” in the tournament.

“Each team is guaranteed three games,” he said. “The first game will dictate where you will go from there. You want to try and win that first game to get in the winners bracket.”

Another reason for the tournament is that it aids in program finances.

“The tournament helps us with our program to raise funds,” Reynolds said. “That’s another primary reason for it. I don’t think most people realize the expenses involved in running any kind of sports program.

“You have building maintenance, equipment, uniforms and transportation. If you can host a tournament at some point in time and get a few local businesses to help donate funds to cover the officiating and such, you can make a decent little amount for your program.”

In action Tuesday night, Straughn lost by two points to Brantley 71-69. In girls action, the Lady Tigers won 41-36.

Reynolds said it was a good game, but when playing the best, his team has to be the best.

“One of the points that I’m trying to get across to my players is that when you play good teams, you’ve got to have your ‘A game’ for 32 minutes,” Reynolds said. “The teams we have lost to have a combined record of 14-4. Actually, it’s greater than that, four of the five teams we’ve played have winning records. We beat New Brockton when they were 5-0 at the time.”

Tip off at the Christmas Shoot Out starts at 3:30 p.m. today with Kinston vs. Georgiana. Straughn tips off tonight at 8 p.m. against McKenzie.