Games between local rivals matched with some of the best teams and individual talent in a two-state area highlight the lineup for the 2017 Ohio Valley Hoops Classic, which will be held Dec. 1 and 2 at the Patriot Center on the campus of Southern State Community College in Hillsboro, event organizer Bennie Carroll announced Tuesday.
The Classic moved to Southern State last year after being held at Wilmington College before that.
The event will culminate when longtime rivals Hillsboro and Greenfield McClain meet on the hardwood for the first time as members of the Frontier Athletic Conference at 9 p.m. on Saturday.
Hillsboro and McClain will end their longtime association with the South Central Ohio League at the end of the current school year and will join Chillicothe, Washington C.H., Miami Trace and Jackson next year in the new Frontier Athletic Conference.
Lynchburg-Clay and Ripley will square off in a Southern Hills League battle to open the Hoops Classic at 6 p.m. on Friday. In another local rivalry game, Leesburg Fairfield and East Clinton will tangle at 4:30 Saturday afternoon.
The event features four Final Four high school teams from a year ago as well as the state’s highest rated senior player.
Moeller, the 2017 Ohio runner-up in Division I, will face Columbus Eastmoor Academy, a Final Four participant in Division II last season, in a marquee matchup at 7:30 Saturday evening. Cooper, the runner-up in the Kentucky state tournament, takes on an outstanding Hilliard Bradley squad at 3 p.m. on Saturday. And, Procterville Fairland, an Ohio Division III Final Four team from a year ago, moves up a couple divisions to take on the Centerville Elks in the 1:30 p.m. game on Saturday.
The two currently highest rated individual players will step on the floor Friday at 9 p.m. when Darius Bazley leads the Princeton Tigers against Samari Curtis and the Xenia Buccaneers. Bazley is currently the state’s number one senior and number 47 in the ESPN Top 100, while Curtis is a consensus top five junior in Ohio, according to Carroll.
The Wilmington Hurricane will take on Campbell County, Ky. in a battle of top-notch programs on Friday evening at 7:30. Mason and Springboro, once neighborhood rivals, will face each other for the first time in more than 10 years when they meet at 6 p.m. on Saturday. Traditional powers Chaminade-Julienne and Linden McKinley get things started early at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, followed by a noon showcase between two outstanding Division III teams, Williamsburg and Tipp City Bethel.
Speaking on behalf of Southern State, Dr. J.R. Roush said, “Southern State Community College is excited to once again host the Ohio Valley Hoops Classic. This is an opportunity to watch some high quality teams and players in our 2,500-seat Patriot Center. We hope you not only check out the great matchups, but also our academic programs and athletic opportunities here at Southern State.”
Following is the schedule of games for the 2017 Ohio Valley Hoops Classic (teams listed first will be the home team and will wear white uniforms):
Friday, Dec. 1
6 p.m. – Lynchburg-Clay vs. Ripley
7:30 p.m. – Wilmington vs. Campbell County
9 p.m. – Xenia vs. Princeton
Saturday, Dec. 2
10:30 a.m. – Chaminade-Julienne vs. Linden McKinley
Noon – Williamsburg vs. Tipp City Bethel
1:30 p.m. – Centerville vs. Fairland
3 p.m. – Hilliard Bradley vs. Cooper
4:30 p.m. – Fairfield vs. East Clinton
6 p.m. – Mason vs. Springboro
7:30 p.m. – Moeller vs. Eastmoor Academy
9 p.m. – Hillsboro vs. McClain