BLHS set to tackle tourney week
Teams from all over the region will converge on Basehor in the next 10 days as BLHS hosts its annual basketball and wrestling tournaments.
It's the fourth straight year for the Bobcat Classic and the Basehor-Linwood Invitational Basketball Tournaments. The Bobcat Classic boasts 25 wrestling teams this year, up from 22 last year. The teams come from a variety of places, including the far reaches of western Kansas, the Kansas City area and Glenwood, Iowa.
The competition promises to be fierce and heated. Garden City, the champion of last year's Bobcat Classic, is back to defend its title. Last year's runner-up, Fort Scott, is also in the tournament, along with perennial powerhouse Abilene. None of them will have an easy time beating Kansas City Turner, which is currently the state's top-ranked team in 5A.
Basehor finished 14th out of 22 teams in last year's Bobcat Classic, one place behind rival Bonner Springs. The Braves and the Santa Fe Trail Chieftains will join the Bobcats as the tournament's Kaw Valley League representatives.
The tournament begins at noon on Friday and ends with the championship finals at 6:30 p.m. Saturday.
Bobcat fans will have just one day to rest before the Basehor-Linwood Invitational Basketball Tournament starts. The tournament includes a boys and a girls bracket, both of which consist of eight teams. The games go from Monday afternoon until Saturday night.
The girls team will start things off for Basehor against Fort Scott at 6 p.m. Monday, with the boys taking their turn against Fort Scott at 7:30. Both teams will look for their first victories of the season against some difficult competition.
The Fort Scott boys team is currently undefeated. Bonner Springs is also competing in both brackets, and their teams have already defeated their respective Basehor rivals once this year.
Atchison is participating in the boys tournament for the first time, while newcomers on the girls' side include Kansas City Northeast and Park Hill.
Each team is guaranteed three games, which means that, in all likelihood, Basehor's Alex Jeannin will reach a career milestone during the tournament. The senior point guard is just two assists away from the school record, despite a career that has seen her weather multiple knee injuries.
The girls team has been energized since Jeannin's return from injury after winter break.
After losing every game by double digits in her absence, the Lady 'Cats have lost two games by a combined seven points since she came back. With the home court advantage they look primed to gain their first victory of the season during the tournament.
The boys team, on the other hand, is still looking to get on track after struggling against Piper. The Bobcats shot 48 percent against Lansing in their last game before the break, but that figure dropped to 26 percent against the Pirates.