February 13, 2014 | Volume 44, Number 6

Hotch tourney starting

The annual Dick Hotch Memorial Basketball Tournament is scheduled to start Thursday, Feb. 13 and run through Sunday at the Haines School.

This year’s event is slated for four teams. The defending champion Klukwan Chilkats will be back to defend their title, along with the runner-up Harbor Heat and two Juneau teams.

The tournament starts Thursday, with three, round-robin games. Another trio of round-robin games will kick off 10 a.m. Friday, before bracket play begins at 4 p.m. One bracket game will be before the Haines High School boys’ junior varsity/varsity doubleheader against Craig, and one after.

Competition continues Saturday, again with the Hotch tournament leading into and following the high school series. The championship game is 1 p.m. Sunday.

Stuart DeWitt, Chilkats teammate Andrew Friske, the 2013 tournament MVP who has hosted tournaments in Sitka as activities director at Mount Edgecumbe High School, longtime director Larry Sweet and others are helping coordinate this year’s competition.

“It was kind of up in the air,” DeWitt said. “I just thought it was time for other people to step up and help out a little. Larry’s been doing it for so long.”

He said the tournament and sponsorships will help raise money for school activities, and businesses donated motel rooms and food for referees from Juneau. Previously, the tournament relied more heavily on participants to officiate.

Families also donate trophies to be awarded to some of the event’s top performers, as well as the winners of three-point and youth free throw contests.