North Forsyth High School will once again host the John Megel Chevrolet Raider Classic for varsity boys and girls basketball, beginning on Saturday and continuing next Monday and Tuesday.
In addition to North Forsyth, Creekview, Pope, Northview, Roswell, Woodstock and Roswell will compete in both the boys and girls events. Blessed Trinity and Douglass will bring their boys squads, and Sequoyah and Duluth will bring their girls.
"It’s a great event for everyone involved," said North Forsyth boys head coach Brian Moon. "It’s something we look forward to this time of year."
Eight contests—four girls, four boys—will be played each day, beginning on Saturday morning when the Lady Wildcats of Duluth and the Pope Lady Greyhounds square off at 9:30 a.m. A winners and a losers bracket will be created after the initial round, and each team is guaranteed at least three games.
The championships will be held Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m. for the girls and 8:00 p.m. for the boys, with trophies presented to the victors.
"Everyone wants to compete and win," said Moon, "and this is a good chance for all these schools to get out and play some tough basketball."
With the season still young, many teams involved have yet to find their identities, and this tournament provides coaches a shot to evaluate how their rosters fare in a competitive, fast-paced environment.
"Some clubs are still trying to figure out where they are. This is three great days to look at kids to see how they handle a little adversity," said Moon. "It’s a great time for everyone to get better."
For Moon’s Raiders, this three-day tourney will be a chance to improve upon an underwhelming start. North Forsyth (0-2) has struggled thus far and will look to right some wrongs at the Classic.
"I have seven seniors on my team, but we’re still very inexperienced in terms of playing time," Moon said. "I’m just trying to find out who’s able to play within our system, take care of the basketball, understand what a good shot is, how to guard somebody. It’s an ongoing process for us right now, and we’re going to give some young kids the minutes to show what they can do."
While North Forsyth’s boys have faced some adversity of late, its girls team is off to a hot start with a 2-0 record – winning their first two games by an average margin of 38.5 points.
This next slate of games will offer the Lady Raiders an opportunity to build on their current momentum, further polish their skills and gain a deeper understanding of the system head coach Eric Herrick has put in place.
North Forsyth’s girls will play their first game Saturday at 6:30 p.m., and the boys will follow at 8:00 p.m. Each has been matched up against Woodstock.