Perhaps a change of fortunes awaits the Overton High School basketball team in the Overton Christmas Tournament.
At least that’s what James McKee hopes as his Bobcats (5-8) brace for their first post-Christmas game, 11:45 a.m. Thursday against Stratford, given the way the preceding weeks have gone.
“Over the past month, we’ve lost six games in the final minute,” the fifth-year coach said. “Last Thursday, we lost to East Nashville [57-56] on a shot at the buzzer. On back-to-back nights [Dec. 7-8], we lost to Cane Ridge and Hunters Lane late in both games.
“Our record is a little misleading.”
In a six-game slide over the past month, four losses were by four points or less. The Bobcats stopped the slide with a win over Northeast, lost the heartbreaker to host East in the East Classic, then bounced back with a win over Marshall County on Friday.
McKee said the leading Bobcat scorer is guard “Driving” Ivan Alsup, and that Shaquille Davis is the leading rebounder. Both are seniors.
Next up is the event they host. They won it in 2009 and 2010 and finished runner-up last year.
“It’s really strong tournament,” McKee said. “We have a very representative field.”
Thursday’s 4:45 p.m. game will showcase two of the top scorers in Nashville in University School of Nashville’s Liam Nash (18 points per game) and East Nashville’s Terry Holt (18.2).
The day’s final contest sends Battle Ground Academy against Alabama power McAdory at 9:45 p.m. McAdory, located in McCalla, Ala., near Birmingham, is where Heisman Trophy winner Bo Jackson was a multi-sport standout during his preps days.
As has been the case for the past three years, Overton will be in a part of the 10-team bracket where winning teams play two games the opening day. The winner of Overton’s game will play the winner of the Lighthouse-Harpeth game at 7:15 p.m.
In other local tournaments:
• Host Father Ryan takes on Hillsboro 7:45 p.m. Thursday in the highlight clash of a four-game card at the Father Ryan Christmas Tournament (boys). Like at Overton, the Irish tourney finals are Saturday.
• The Battle Ground Academy Christmas Invitational (girls) opens Thursday. The leading scorer entering the tournament is BGA eighth-grader Allison Cowie who averages a double-double — 18.6 points and 11.1 rebounds per game. The Wildcats’ first game is 3:30 against Glencliff.
• Christ Presbyterian Academy’s boys, fresh off their championship at the King of the Bluegrass Holiday Classic in Louisville, makes its debut at No. 20 in today’s USA Today Super 25 prep rankings.
CPA (12-0) beat the top three ranked teams in Kentucky, capped by an 83-71 victory over Louisville Ballard in the finals Sunday. Jalen Lindsey, who scored 44 points in the final cintest, was named tourney MVP. CPA won the tourney for the second straight year and has won 37 straight games overall.
• Ensworth, which won the Division II state title and finished 13-0, wound up No. 8 in the final USA Today Super 25 prep football poll.
• David Martin, who has been Goodpasture Christian School’s football coach for the past 21 years, has resigned at the end of the season. Martin’s teams went 212-97 in his time with the Cougars after earlier stops at Westmoreland (two years) and Columbia Academy (one). He won state titles in 1995, 1999 and 2001.
Goodpasture was 5-6 in 2012, losing in the first round of the playoffs in a season marred by injuries and player suspensions.
• Brentwood Academy defensive back Jalen Ramsey has been named one of six finalists for the American Family Insurance high school defensive player of the year. The winner will be announced at a dinner Jan. 4 prior to the U.S. Army All-American all-star bowl game. Ramsey is a participant in the game, to be played Jan. 5 in San Antonio.
Overton Christmas Tournament
Girls: 8 a.m.—Lipscomb vs. University School of Nashville; 10:30 a.m.—M.L. King vs. Overton; 1:00 p.m. —Goodpasture vs. Summit; 3:30 p.m.—Hillsboro vs. Harpeth; 6 p.m.—winner game 1 vs. winner game 2; 8:30 p.m.—Father Ryan vs. Whites Creek.
Boys: 9:15 a.m.—Lighthouse Christian vs. Harpeth; 11:45 a.m.—Stratford vs. Overton; 2:15 p.m.—Whites Creek vs. Summit; 4:45 p.m.—University School of Nashville vs. East Nashville; 7:15 p.m.—winner gm 1 vs. winner gm 2; 9:30 p.m.—McAdory vs. Battle Ground Academy.
Girls: 8 a.m., 11 a.m., 2 p.m.— losers bracket games; 5, 8 p.m.— semifinals.
Boys: 9:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m.— losers bracket games. 6:30, 9:30 p.m.— semifinals.
Girls: 8 a.m., 11 a.m., 2 p.m.— consolation games; 5 p.m.—third place; 8 p.m.—championship.
Boys: 9:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m.— consolation games. 6:30 p.m.—third place; 9:30 p.m.—championship.
Father Ryan Christmas Tournament
Thursday: 3 p.m.—LeVergne vs. Clarksville; 4:30—Independence vs. Riverdale; 6:15 – Mt. Juliet vs. Signal Mountain; 7:45—Father Ryan vs. Hillsboro.
Friday: 3 p.m.—Loser game 1vs. loser game 2; 4:30 – Loser game 3 vs. loser game 4; 6:15 – Winner game 1 vs. winner game 2; 7:45 p.m.—Winner game 3 vs. winner game 4.
Saturday: 3 p.m.—7th place game; 4:30—5th place game; 6:15 – 3rd place game; 7:45 – Championship game.
Battle Ground Academy Christmas Invitational
Thursday: 2 p.m.—Culleoka vs. Lighthouse Christian; 3:30 – Glencliff vs. BGA.
Friday: 10 a.m.—Glencliff vs. Culleoka; 11:30 a.m.—BGA vs. Lighthouse Christian; 6 p.m.—Lighthouse Christian vs. Glencliff; 7:30 p.m.—Culleoka vs. BGA.
Saturday: 1 p.m.—3rd place game; 2:30—Championship game.