St. Cloud, Harmony varsity tips off Saturday at 2:30 p.m.
By Ken Jackson
The landmark outdoor basketball game between Harmony and St. Cloud’s boys teams will be held Sautrday at the Austin-Tindall Sports Complex on a regulation wood court.
Freshman, junior varsity and varsity games will be held as part of the Hardwood Court Classic, presented by the Greater Osceola United Soccer Club, a prominent Austin-Tindall tenant. Tickets are $4 for adults and $2 for students.
The freshman game will begin at noon, and the varsity game is scheduled to tip-off at 2:30 p.m.
While there is talk in the area that varsity games have been played outdoors, none in the county — or the rest of the country — were held on a regulation wood floor, which is being installed for today’s special event. Only four National Basketball Association games have ever been played outdoors.
The county has access to as many as seven full courts, and today’s game could be the catalyst for full outdoor hardwood tournaments in the future, Austin-Tindall Facility Manager Jeff Kuenzli said.
“We’re going to have our eyes wide open and evaluate how it plays out,” he said. “In the future, I’m not against putting all seven courts out and having some kind of all-day tournament, if this works out. I’ve been hearing that interest has been picking up, and that other teams that don’t have games that day are coming to watch to see how it goes.”
For information call 407-742-7820. Austin-Tindall Sports Complex is located on Boggy Creek Road between Narcoossee Road and Simpson Road, just east of East Lake Elementary School and the under-construction Tohopekaliga High School.
Harmony (6-14) is looking for a win to move up to the third-seed in the District 8A-6 tournament and avoid a possible semifinal matchup with top-seed Viera, who is undefeated in district play.
St. Cloud (4-14) is looking to snap a nine-game losing streak and will try to notch its first victory over a county or 8A-6 opponent this afternoon.
Both teams are looking for a win over their rivals. They met on Jan. 11 — inside a tradition gym at St. Cloud — and the Longhorns took a 59-50 victory.