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HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL: Optimist tournament tips off tonight

by The Indiana Gazette on March 24, 2014 10:40 AM

The 45th annual Indiana Optimist Club Underclass Basketball Tournament tips off this evening and continues throughout the week at Indiana High School.

This year’s bracket consists of 10 teams in a single-elimination format.

The tournament tips off today with Ligonier Valley playing United at 7 p.m. and Saltsburg taking on Penns Manor at 8:15 p.m.

On Tuesday, Homer-Center faces Marion Center at 7 p.m., and Blairsville plays the Ligonier-United winner at 8:15.

On Wednesday, West Shamokin squares off against Purchase Line at 7 p.m., and Indiana takes on the Saltsburg-Penns Manor winner at 8:15.

The semifinals are set for Thursday at 7 and 8:15 p.m., and the championship game is Saturday at 2 p.m. Girls’ and boys’ all-star games featuring this year’s seniors follow at 3:30 and 5 p.m., respectively.

Indiana enters the tournament as the top seed, and West Shamokin is the second seed. Indiana topped West Shamokin in last year’s championship game.

“Indiana and West Shamokin return with solid underclass rosters,” Greg McKee, tournament chairman, said. “Blairsville and Homer-Center also look to make some noise with some key players returning.”

Purchase Line, under first-year coach Steve Woodrow, returns to the tournament following a three-year absence.

“Coach Woodrow is excited to get his team back on the right track,” McKee said.

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