DUBLIN —On Dec. 27-30, the Knights’ Castle at West Bladen High will be invaded by seven regional boys basketball teams for the second annual Woodmen of the World Christmas Tournament.
The tournament will open with four games on Friday, Dec. 27, continue Saturday, Dec. 28, with four more games and conclude with four games on Monday, Dec. 30.
“We are again happy to be hosting this event,” said West Bladen coach Travis Pait. “The seven teams that will be joining us are all well coached and will certainly be contenders in their respective leagues. The level of competition will help prepare all of the participants for conference play.”
In addition to the home West Bladen Knights, the tournament will include teams from Scotland County, Fairmont, Whiteville, North Brunswick, South Brunswick, Southern Lee and South Columbus.
Joe Walters, state manager for Woodmen of the World, said his company is excited about being involved with the event.
“All of the communities involved have a high rate of Woodmen members, which makes this a great venue for us to continue to actively strengthen our communities,” he said. “We have, for a long time, seen the value of team sports on our young people.
“Many lessons are taught and learned during this time in our youth’s lives and Woodmen wants to be part of that process,” Walters added. “We believe that this tournament gives us the chance to do just that.”
On Friday, the tournament will open at 2 p.m. with a game between South Columbus and South Brunswick; at 4 p.m. North Brunswick will face Fairmont; 6 p.m. will feature Southern Lee versus Whiteville; and the 8 p.m. game will pit West Bladen against Scotland County.
Games on Saturday will again be at 2, 4, 6 and 8 p.m. On Monday, the seventh-place game will be at 2 p.m.; the fifth-place game at 4 p.m.; the third-place game at 6 p.m. and the championship at 8 p.m.
Admission to the games is $5 with no passes out. The concession stand will be open.
Pait said that an iPad will be given away during the tournament.
— Lady Knights: Last season the West Bladen girls team took second place in the first Woodmen of the World Christmas Tournament, but only a boys tourney is being played this year.
Instead, the Lady Knights had scheduled to play in the East Columbus Christmas Tournament. But that tournament was cancelled because of a lack of boys teams, leaving coach Pam Stephens’ team without a Christmas break tournament to compete in.
“It’s disappointing, because you always want to be able to play over the break,” Stephens said. “But we’ll practice, and we have some girls with colds who can use the time to get well.”
— Eagles: Coach Ken Cross will take his team to compete in the Christmas Tournament at Union High on Friday, Dec. 27, and Saturday, Dec. 28.
The Eagles will open the tournament on Friday, Dec. 27, at 6 p.m. against Triton High. A win puts East Bladen into the championship on Saturday, Dec. 28, at 7:30 p.m. against Friday’s winner between Union and Lakewood. A loss Friday puts the Eagles in the consolation game Saturday at 4:30 p.m.
— Lady Eagles: Coach Patty Evers will take her team to compete in the Christmas Tournament at Union High on Friday, Dec. 27, and Saturday, Dec. 28.
The Lady Eagles will open the tournament on Friday, Dec. 27, at 3 p.m. against Triton High. A win puts them into the championship on Saturday, Dec. 28, at 6 p.m. against Friday’s winner between Lakewood and Union. A loss Friday puts the Lady Eagles in the consolation game Saturday at 3 p.m.