LA VERNE, CA – Many of the top boys’ basketball programs in the west will go head up in opening-round action during the seventh annual The Classic at Damien, set to run on the Damien High campus and at surrounding schools. The boys basketball teams from Lehi and Skyridge are in the field this year.
The Classic at Damien, the most prestigious post-Christmas high school tournament in the country, returns with an expanded field — 128 teams spread over eight divisions, including the new “Copper” division.
Competition in the Silver, Bronze, Green, Copper, and Iron divisions tips off at 9:30 or 10 a.m. on Dec. 26. The Falcons are making a return visit to the Silver Division, where they finished as consolation runner-ups last year after missing their first game due to the air travel snafus.
Their first opponent this year will be Junipero Serra High School, a private Catholic school in Gardena CA. The game is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. at the Damien Event Center. Skyridgewill then move on in the bracket according to their results.
Coach Jeff Gardner indicated his team enjoyed the experience last year despite the late start and they’re looking forward to another good tournament.
The programs in the Platinum, Gold and Diamond divisions begin play on Dec. 27. The Platinum, Gold and Diamond feature16-team brackets stuffed with potential 2024 state and sectional champions from California, Washington, Idaho, Utah, and Arizona. Lehi has been assigned to the Diamond Division.
Their first opponent will be Foothill High School from Santa Ana CA. Game time is set for 8 p.m. at Ramona Middle School. The Pioneers will follow the bracket after that depending on how they do.
“Last year was a great experience winning the tournament in San Diego,” said Coach Quincy Lewis. “We’re looking forward to competing with some of the best teams in the west at the Damien tournament.”
The eight divisions’ championship games will be played on Dec. 30 in Damien’s Athletic and Event centers.
Follow the progress of our local teams on lehifreepress.com.