Klukwan’s Andrew Friske, center, shoots against Yakutat’s Derek James, left, at the Juneau Lions Club 73rd Annual Gold Medal Basketball Tournament at Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé on Tuesday, March 19, 2019. This year’s tournament starts on Sunday, March 19-25 at JDHS. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Klukwan’s Andrew Friske, center, shoots against Yakutat’s Derek James, left, at the Juneau Lions Club 73rd Annual Gold Medal Basketball Tournament at Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé on Tuesday, March 19, 2019. This year’s tournament starts on Sunday, March 19-25 at JDHS. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

The Gold Medal Basketball Tournament is back. Here’s what you need to know before it tips off

Juneau Lions Club annual fundraiser is set to start Sunday.

The Juneau Empire’s expanded coverage of the Juneau Lions Club 74th Gold Medal Basketball Tournament is made possible by Sealaska Corp. Thanks to this sponsorship, this article —and all of this year’s Gold Medal coverage — is available online without a subscription to the Empire.

After a few years off, the Juneau Lions Gold Medal Basketball Tournament is back — and passions and spirits are expected to be high, said Lions Club President Edward Hotch. And while he noted the long-running tournament tends to bring out the fiery sides of players and fans, it’s ultimately a cherished tradition with fun and games at its center.

“This is a great time for everybody to come together to see each other after not seeing each other for so long,” Hotch said. “They’ll yell for their teams and yell against each other, but when the games are over, they’re still friends.”

The Gold Medal Basketball Tournament is set to begin this Sunday after a three-year hiatus. On Oct. 25 of last year, the Juneau Lions Club unanimously voted to hold its largest fundraising event, the Gold Medal Basketball Tournament from March 19-25 at the Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé. Hotch said that since the tournament is a fundraiser, there will not be any streaming options made available.

Ticket prices for week passes will cost $65 for adults and $50 for students and seniors while individual day prices are still being worked out, but will be made available at juneaulions.org. Hotch said this year the club will be providing an ATM inside the gymnasium to make it easier for people to take out cash for fees and donations.

The tournament will have the following brackets:

8 B Bracket Teams:

Kake, Juneau, Metlakatla, Hoonah, Hydaburg, Angoon, Haines, Yakutat

6 C Bracket Teams:

Klukwan, Yakutat, Angoon, Hoonah, Kake, Filcom

6 M Bracket Teams:

Angoon, Juneau, Hoonah, Kake, Sitka, Klukwan

6 W Bracket Teams:

Kake, Yakutat, Hoonah, Prince of Wales, Angoon, Sitka

While games officially start Sunday, Hotch said opening ceremonies will be pushed back to Monday to allow teams more time to arrive into town. According to Hotch, the opening ceremonies will consist of speeches given by Lions Clubs members and former players, as well as Juneau veterans, who will bring in the American flags during the singing of the national anthem.

“People are still getting off of work, so we wait until later in the day at 6 p.m. so that we have the crowd there,” Hotch said. “We’ll do the opening ceremonies before the C Bracket starts their 6 p.m. game on Monday.”

Voting for the 2023 Hall of Fame will take place on Thursday, March 23, and will be decided by past Hall of Fame members who, according to Hotch, have to research the players and send in the information that’s needed and then announcements will be made on Friday before the start of the third game of the day. Though opening ceremonies will be held until Monday, Hotch said fans can still look forward to a surprise performance on Sunday by the JDHS cheer team.

“Because Juneau made it to go to state, the JDHS dance group is going to perform on Sunday as a last minute practice for them,” Hotch said. “So, they’re going to perform during the halftime of the 6 p.m. game on Sunday because the dance team leaves Monday morning. We were originally trying to get them for Friday but they’ll be out of town and they volunteered to do it on Sunday instead.”

Game Schedule

* First Round Game

– Loser Out of Games

+ Winner Games

= Championship Games

Sunday 3/19

10 a.m. C*

11:30 a.m. B*

1 p.m. M*

2:30 p.m. B*

BREAK

4:30 p.m. M*

6 p.m. B*

7:30 p.m. C*

9 p.m. B*

Monday 3/20

10 a.m. M+

11:30 a.m. C+

1 p.m. W*

2:30 p.m. B+

BREAK

4:30 p.m. M+

6 p.m. C+

7:30 p.m. B+

9 p.m. W*

Tuesday 3/21

12:30 p.m. W+

2 p.m. C-

3:30 p.m. B-

BREAK

6 p.m. W+

7:30 p.m. B-

9 p.m. C-

Wednesday 3/22

12:30 p.m. M-

2 p.m. W-

3:30 p.m. B-

BREAK

6 p.m. M-

7:30 p.m. B-

9 p.m. W-

Thursday 3/23

10 a.m. M-

11:30 a.m. W-

1 p.m. C-

2:30 p.m. B-

BREAK

4:30 p.m. W+

6 p.m. C+

7:30 p.m. B+

9 p.m. M+

Friday 3/24

2 p.m. W-

4 p.m. M-

6 p.m. C-

8 p.m. B-

Saturday 3/25

2 p.m. W=

4 p.m. M=

6 p.m. C=

8 p.m. B=

• Contact reporter Jonson Kuhn at jonson.kuhn@juneauempire.com.

Gold Medal Tournament C-Bracket (Courtesy Photo / Juneau Lions Club)
Gold Medal Tournament B-Bracket (Courtesy Photo / Juneau Lions Club)
Gold Medal Tournament W-Bracket (Courtesy Photo / Juneau Lions Club)
Gold Medal Tournament M-Bracket (Courtesy Photo / Juneau Lions Club)

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