HOLIDAY TOURNEYS HOPING TO OFFER LATE GIFTS

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Written By StaceyPageOnline / Sports on Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Jake Harmon and Lakeland Christian Academy will host its annual Cougar Classic at Grace College on Dec. 27-28. (File photo by Mike Deak)

The holiday season obviously presents itself with choices. New gifts, time off from classes, bad weather. It’s all there for the taking.

The 2018-19 winter break from school will afford dozens of athletic tournaments, shoot-outs and invitationals to keep the sports beat alive during the holidays. Here’s a look at some of the tournaments coming to the area across the sports realm. Check with each location for exact start times.

Boys Basketball

Lakeland Christian Academy and Wawasee are hosting events.

LCA will host its annual two-day Cougar Classic Dec. 27-28, the boys games at Grace College. The Cougars are part of a six-team field that is split into two three-team pods, LCA with games against Granger Christian and Victory Christian on Dec. 27. Placing games will commence Dec. 28.

Wawasee is hosting a one-day shootout Dec. 28, taking on Garrett and then a night-time game against either Lakewood Park or Hanover Central.

Warsaw is also involved in a special holiday game, playing East Noble on Dec. 29 at Grace College.

The Northeast Corner Conference tournament starts Jan. 8 and the Bi-County tournament, which Triton is involved, starts Jan. 15.

Other tournaments involving area teams include the Elkhart Central, Marian and Plymouth tourneys.

Girls Basketball

LCA, Wawasee and Warsaw are also hosting events.

LCA will host its annual two-day Cougar Classic Dec. 27-28, the girls games at LCA for day one and at Grace for day two. The Cougars are part of a six-team field that is split into two three-team pods, LCA with games against Granger Christian and Victory Christian on Dec. 27. Placing games will take place Dec. 28.

Wawasee is hosting a one-day shootout Dec. 29, taking on Indianapolis Brebeuf and Norwell. Plymouth is also playing Brebeuf and Norwell as part of the four-team block.

Warsaw is hosting the TCU Lady Tiger Classic on Dec. 29. Both the JV and varsity teams from Warsaw, Huntington North, Chesterton and Perry Meridian are playing, Warsaw getting Huntington North in the morning game and Chesterton and Perry Meridian facing off. The winners of the two games – in both JV and varsity competition – will come back for the championship games in the Tiger Den in the afternoon.

NorthWood will take part in the Banker’s Classic hosted by Northridge. The two-day tournament has eight teams involved including Northridge and East Noble in Pool A and NorthWood and Columbia City in Pool B. The Panthers will also see Rushville and Merrillville in pool play before playing a fourth game on the 29th. NorthWood’s JV will also play in a mini session at Northridge on the 28th against East Noble and a second game against either Northridge or Portage.

Tippecanoe Valley will play two games in the West Noble Shootout on Dec. 29. Concord, Lakeland and West Noble are all in the four-team grid.

The Northeast Corner Conference tournament starts Jan. 8 and the Bi-County tournament, which Triton is involved, starts Jan. 15.

Other tournaments involving local teams include the Rochester, South Bend Washington and Goshen tourneys.

Wrestling

Three major wrestling tournaments highlight the weeks surrounding winter break.

The John McKee Memorial tournament hosted by Rochester will have wrestlers from Triton and Tippecanoe Valley among the 14 weight class brackets. The McKee will be held Dec. 22.

The Al Smith Invite, often referred to as the ‘Measuring Stick’ showcase, is hosted by Mishawaka and runs Dec. 28-29. Teams from across Indiana and sometimes outside the state descend upon The Cave for the prestigious grinder. Wrestlers from Wawasee, Warsaw and NorthWood are among the invitees.

The Indiana High School Wrestling Coaches Association (IHSWCA) Team State Duals will take place Jan. 5 at the Allen County Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne. Wawasee will be the local team of focus, coming in as the defending Class 2-A champion. The Warriors will be joined by area teams from Penn, Rochester, Northridge, Jimtown and Central Noble in the three-class championships.

Gymnastics

Only one event is listed locally over the holiday break, which is the Blazer Invite hosted by Elkhart Central. Wawasee is one of the teams taking part in the event on Dec. 29, the host Blazers are the defending champion at their gymnastics warehouse on Industrial Drive in Elkhart.

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