High School Sports

Inaugural Capital Holiday Classic tips off tonight

When putting on his first holiday basketball tournament at Capital High School, Cougars boys coach Doug Galloway wanted to start with teams and opposing coaches he was familiar with.

But eventually Galloway hopes to make the Capital Holiday Classic not just an annual event, but something bigger that will draw in teams from different parts of the Northwest.

“We’d like to make it a big event,” Galloway said.

His first tournament starts today as a two-day, four-team event that features Capital, Bremerton, as well as two Class 4A Oregon teams (equivalent to Washington’s 2A) – Seaside and Scappoose.

It’s one of two local boys tournaments taking place today and Thursday. The annual North Thurston Holiday Tournament tips off today and concludes Thursday at North Thurston High School.

Capital has been going to summer camps at Seaside on the Oregon coast for the past five years, and the Seagulls were one of the first teams Galloway looked to bring in for his tournament.

Seaside takes on Bremerton at 5 p.m. today in the first game, followed by Capital and Scappoose at 7 p.m. On Thursday, Bremerton and Scappoose play at 5 p.m., and Capital and Seaside tip off at 7 p.m. Seaside and Scappoose both play in the 4A Cowapa League in Oregon.

The Indians of Scappoose are coached by Mike Doherty, who is Oregon’s all-time winningest coach. He’s in his first year with Scappoose – his 49th year overall as a high school coach – and has a career win-loss record of 829-367. He’s won three state titles (1968, ’80 and ’84) and last coached in a state championship game in 2008 when his Oregon City team lost to Grant of Portland, 63-56, in the Class 6A title game.

Doherty’s Scappoose team is currently 4-3 and coming off a 58-56 double-overtime victory over R.A. Long on Dec. 23. Junior guard Cody Stutzer leads the Tribe in scoring at 14.1 points a game.

Seaside (6-2) has a blend of talented youth and experience as well as height. The Seagulls feature four players who stand 6-foot-3 or taller.

Galloway tried to get The Evergreen State College for the tournament venue, but scheduling conflicts made it difficult to get the facility, so the best decision was to have it at Capital’s home gym.

“It’s nice to have it at home for our kids and parents over the holidays,” Galloway said.

Teams taking part in the annual North Thurston Holiday Tournament are host North Thurston, Timberline, Tumwater and Yelm. It will be 3A vs. 2A in both games each day. Tumwater and Yelm play today at 5:15 p.m., and North Thurston and Timberline tip off at 7 p.m. On Thursday, it’s Tumwater-Timberline at 5:15 p.m., followed by North Thurston-Yelm at 7 p.m.

Other South Sound teams playing in out-of-area tournaments include the North Thurston girls in the Santa Slam Tournament in Oak Harbor today and Thursday. The Rams play Anacortes at 5:30 p.m. in their first game.

The River Ridge boys and girls are playing in the Les Schwab Christmas Classic at Kennedy and Northwest All-Stars tournament at Wilson, respectively. Both tournaments started Tuesday and continue today and Thursday.