The annual Leavenworth Shootout basketball tournament is set to tip off Thursday.
This year’s tournament will feature the Leavenworth Pioneers, Blue Valley West Jaguars, Raytown South Cardinals, Liberty Blue Jays, Washington Wildcats and Topeka Trojans.
The tournament will also mark the season debut for the 2018-19 Leavenworth Pioneers boys’ basketball team and the first three games under head coach Prentes Potts. It will be the first time in more than 30 years that a new coach will lead the boy’s team.
Potts takes over after a successful stint as the Schlagle head coach.
In a preseason interview, Potts said he is excited for the first game of the season to see what the team will have against someone else after months of practice and prep.
He said Nathan Dalby, Reece Williams, Jarrett Hensley and D’Monte Gaw are going to be key players to this year’s success.
“(Dalby’s) ability to shoot the ball is something I haven’t seen or had as a coach in a long time,” Potts said. “The transfer Jarrett Hensley. Big presence just in his size and skill set. He has the ability to dribble the ball and shoot it, keep people involved. Just making plays. Reece Williams is huge. He’s phenomenal. In film last year, he looked maybe 235 to 240 (pounds). Reece is down to probably 205 to 210. That in itself speaks volumes of his effort and what he wants to accomplish this season. And then D’Monte Gaw is going to help us once he becomes eligible. He is about 6 foot, 3 inches tall with a six-foot wingspan. Super athletic playmaker. At the end of the day, we can never have enough playmakers.”
The tournament starts Thursday at 4 p.m. with Blue Valley West vs. Raytown South. Topeka will face Liberty at 5:45 p.m. and Leavenworth will play Washington at 7:30.
Friday continues with Topeka and Raytown South at 4 p.m., Washington vs. Blue Valley West at 5:45 p.m. and Leavenworth vs. Liberty at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday’s session starts at noon with Blue Valley West vs. Topeka. Liberty and Washington follow at 1:45 p.m. and Leavenworth will play Raytown South at 3:30 p.m.
Tickets are available at the door. They are $5 for adults and $3 for students.