By BRIAN CUNNIFF
The largest high school sporting event of the year in Cape May County is set to begin Thursday.
The 22nd annual Boardwalk Basketball Classic is set for Thursday through New Year’s Eve (Tuesday, Dec. 31) at the Wildwoods Convention Center.
This year’s tournament, although one day less than in some recent years, still includes approximately 70 high school boys and girls basketball teams, making it the largest single-venue high school basketball tournament in the country.
Many of the local teams will participate in the event, including the boys and girls teams from Wildwood and Wildwood Catholic high schools, the joint hosts of the event. Other Cape May County teams in the tournament include the Cape May Tech girls, the Lower Cape May boys and girls and the Ocean City boys and girls.
In addition, many other South Jersey high schools are represented at the tournament, including Shawnee, Kingsway, Oakcrest, Winslow Township, Sterling ACIT, Holy Cross, Holy Spirit and more.
Teams hailing from six states, including a team from Wildwood, Fla., will participate.
Ticket prices are $7 for adults, $5 for children/senior citizens for a daily pass; $12 for adults, $9 for children/senior citizens for a two-day pass; and $30 for adults, $25 for children/senior citizens for an all-tournament pass.
Games are played on two separate courts in each of the building two halls.
Coastal Broadcasting will have live radio and/or video coverage of numerous games at the tournament.
On Thursday, Dec. 26, CoastSportsToday.com will carry a live video broadcast of the Lower Cape May vs. Wildwood girls game at 12 noon. At 8:15 p.m., 98.7 The Coast and CoastSportsToday.com will air the boys game between the two schools.
On Friday, Dec. 27, 98.7 The Coast and CoastSportsToday.com will air the boys game between Wildwood Catholic and Boys Latin (Md.). Wildwood Catholic coach Dave DeWeese can win his 300th career game with a victory.
Other games later in the tournament are also scheduled for broadcast.
The tournament’s entire schedule is available online at bbclassic.com.