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It's possible that the 42nd edition of the Hound Invitational Tournament (HIT) has been the hardest to pull off.

And that has put the potential 43rd edition in a precarious position.

The boys basketball event at Shippensburg has had a wide variety of teams participate. Last year, the Hounds were joined by Octorara out of District 1, Mountain Ridge (Md.) and Egg Harbor (N.J.).

Here's how it went down this year, according to Ship athletic director Mike Montedoro:

Mountain Ridge and Egg Harbor decided not to return. In addition to Octorara, the HIT got a commitment from Susquehanna Twp.

Montedoro couldn't find another team that wanted to play two games, so he inserted Shikellamy into Monday's schedule and Red Lion into Tuesday's pairings. It it was Shik vs. Octorara and Ship vs. Susquehanna on the first night, and ST vs. Octorara, and Ship vs. Red Lion the second night.

Then Shikellamy dropped out three weeks ago, due to what it described as "a scheduling conflict," so Monday has only one game.

As of this writing, Octorara was still planning to play, but Montedoro was concerned it might not come since it has only one game now.

It wouldn't be the first time the HIT was reduced to just three teams.

"It has been an absolute nightmare," Montedoro said. "I thought we had Cedar Cliff lined up. We talked to them when we both played at the Gettysburg (Tip-Off) tournament, but they decided to pick up another game. Red Lion would only come if they could play us. We might be able to get some teams from Washington County, Md., but then those games wouldn't count toward the power rankings, so it doesn't help you.

"It seems like everybody is having this trouble, and I'm not sure why. There doesn't seem to be any loyalty to an event, especially with teams from outside the area. And with all the coaching changes, the new coach might decide he doesn't want to play based on whether or not he can win a game or two."

The oldest local holiday event, the Fannett-Metal Christmas Tournament, now in its 43rd go-round, has been settled for a few years, with McConnellsburg, Shalom Christian and Maryland School for the Deaf participating, and F-M athletic director and coach Greg Best hopes it stays that way.

"It becomes tougher and tougher to fill it every time somebody drops out," Best said. "It's hard to get a District 5 school to play because it doesn't count in the ratings, and some teams just decide it's better to practice and not play games."

Montedoro said, "I think most teams do want to play, because if not, you have to find a spot to play those two games you lose. And if you try to fit them in during January and it gets jammed up with snow days, then you're playing four or five games in a week."

ALL DRESSED UP

Speaking of the F-M Tournament, teams and fans will get to look at the Tigers' newly-renovated gym.

Best said approximately $85,000 was spent on the facility, which was in need of sprucing up for several years. He said the Friends of Fannett-Metal Athletics, the F-M Education Foundation and the school district combined to come up with the funds.

Among the changes are a refinished and widened floor surface; new bleachers, including a new set at the cafeteria end of the building, new paint, new backboards and rims, and new LED lights. It's going to be a lot brighter in the Tiger Den.

OTHER TOURNEYS 

The Chambersburg boys travel to Gettysburg for the Warriors Holiday Tournament. The Trojans (5-2) will face off against South Western (0-8) on Monday at 6:30. The winner will go on to play either Gettysburg or Delone Catholic, Tuesday at 8. If they should meet, Gettysburg (7-2) will be Chambersburg's biggest threat in the post-holiday showdown, but Delone (4-4) did take down the Trojans last year in the consolation game of the same tournament.

James Buchanan's boys and girls will travel to Newville for the Big Spring tournament. The the boys take on Halifax, while the girls face Cedar Cliff in the first round.

The Lady Rockets (3-4) lost to Cedar Cliff (4-4) last year in the first round, 63-54; while the boys (5-3) should feel more comfortable taking on Halifax - they beat the Wildcats in the championship round last year, 53-47. The winner of the boys game will take on either Big Spring or East Juniata at 7:30 Tuesday. The winner on the girls side will move on to the championship round against either Big Spring or Carlisle at 5:30, Tuesday.

The Greencastle-Antrim girls (6-1) will head to the Lower Dauphin Tournament to take on Dover (2-7) in the first round starting Tuesday. The Blue Devils beat Dover 52-32 in the consolation game last year. The tournament championship game will be played Wednesday at 7:30 between the winner of Greencaslte-Dover, against either Dallastown or Lower Dauphin. Dallastown (0-8) beat the Blue Devils in the first round of the tournament last season. While Greencastle did not meet Lower Dauphin last year, the Falcons (6-2) could be G-A's toughest competition in the holiday tournament this time around.

"Lower Dauphin will be on their home court and they're an excellent defensive team," Greencastle coach Mike Rhine said. "They have good female athletes. If we do get to play them on Wednesday it will be a battle."

1,000TH POINT WATCH 

The Greencastle girls team has a chance to do more than win the holiday tournament this year, as junior Jenay Faulkner is just a few buckets away from scoring her 1,000th point. She needs 18 to reach the milestone, and while she is averaging more than 21 points per game this season, it's just a matter of how soon she will make that memorable basket this week.

"It's a life-long accomplishment," Rhine said. "It's a cool thing to be recognized, but knowing Jenay, it will be a relief for her to get it out of the way. She is going to focus on the game."

Mikell McGee of Fannett-Metal also has the opportunity to earn his 1,000th point Monday, with just 16 to go headed into the Fannett-Metal Christmas Tournament.

Lindsey Smith contributed to this article.

Holiday Tournaments

Monday, Dec. 28

BOYS

Gettysburg Tournament -- Chambersburg vs. South Western, 6:30; Delone Catholic vs. Gettysburg, 8

Hound Invitational -- Susquehanna Twp. at Shippensburg, 7:30

Richard Doub Tournament (Williamsport, Md.) -- Greencastle-Antrim vs. Broadfording, 5; Catoctin vs. Williamsport, 7

Fannett-Metal Christmas Tournament -- McConnellsburg vs. Md. School for the Deaf, 6; Shalom Christian vs. Fannett-Metal, 7:30

Tri-State Shootout (Berkeley Springs, W.Va.) -- Southern Fulton vs. Hancock, 6; Clear Spring vs. Berkeley Springs, 7:30

Valley Forge Christian Tournament -- Cumb. Valley Christian vs. TBA

GIRLS

Biglerville Tournament -- Waynesboro vs. Steel-High, 6; York Country Day vs. Biglerville, 7:30

Christian School of York Tournament -- Shalom Christian vs. Dayspring Christian, 3; Fairfield vs. Christian School of York, 6

Valley Forge Christian Tournament -- Cumb. Valley Christian vs. TBA

Tuesday, Dec. 29

BOYS

Gettysburg Tournament -- Consolation, 6:30; Championship, 8

Hound Invitational -- Susquehanna Twp.vs. Octorara, 6; Red Lion at Shippensburg, 7:30

Richard Doub Tournament -- Consolation, 5; Championship, 7

Fannett-Metal Christmas Tournament -- Consolation, 6; Championship, 7:30

Tri-State Shootout -- Consolation, 6; Championship, 7:30

Valley Forge Christian Tournament -- TBA

Big Spring Tournament -- James Buchanan vs. Halifax, 4:30; East Juniata vs. Big Spring, 8

New Oxford Christmas Tournament -- Waynesboro vs. Bermudian Springs, 6:30; York Tech vs. New Oxford, 8

Claysburg Tournament -- Bedford vs. Everett, 5; Forbes Road at Claysburg-Kimmel, 8

GIRLS

Biglerville Tournament -- Consolation, 6; Championship, 7:30

Christian School of York Tournament -- Consolation, 3; Championship, 6

Valley Forge Christian Tournament -- TBA

Lower Dauphin Tournament -- Greencastle-Antrim vs. Dover, 6; Dallastown vs. Lower Dauphin, 7:30

Big Spring Tournament -- James Buchanan vs. Cedar Cliff, 1:30; Carlisle vs. Big Spring, 6

Claysburg Tournament -- McConnellsburg vs. Bedford, 3:30; Hyndman vs. Claysburg-Kimmel, 6:30

Hancock Holiday Tournament -- Broadfording vs. Hancock, 1; Clear Spring vs. Faith Christian, 2:30; Southern Fulton vs. Md. School for the Deaf, 4; Berkeley Springs vs. Bishop Walsh, 5:30; Grace Academy vs. Northern Bedford, 7

Wednesday, Dec. 30

BOYS

Big Spring Tournament -- Consolation, 4; Championship, 7:30

New Oxford Christmas Tournament -- Consolation, 6:30; Championship, 8

Claysburg Tournament -- Consolation, 5; Championship, 8

GIRLS

Lower Dauphin Tournament -- Consolation, 6; Championship, 7:30

Big Spring Tournament -- Consolation, 2:30; Championship, 5:30

Claysburg Tournament -- Consolation, 3:30; Championship, 6:30

Hancock Holiday Tournament -- Bishop Walsh vs. Broadfording, 1; Faith Christian vs. Md. School for the Deaf, 2:30; Southern Fulton vs. Grace Academy, 4; Northern Bedford vs. Clear Spring, 5:30; Berkeley Springs vs. Hancock, 7

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