It’s holiday tourney time

Gibault’s Gavin Kesler goes up for a shot while defended by Waterloo’s Alex Stell during a game earlier this season. 

The Christmas season is upon us, which means its time for holiday hoops tournaments. 

The annual Freeburg-Columbia Holiday Tournament takes place next Tuesday through Thursday at Freeburg High School, with Gibault, Columbia and Waterloo among the eight-team field. 

See a full tourney bracket below.

Gibault (8-2) enters the tourney on a six-game winning streak. 

On Saturday, the Hawks escaped with a 54-52 win at Father McGivney. Gavin Kesler scored 20 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, Kaden Augustine scored 16 points and Kanen Augustine added 10 points in the victory.

On Friday, Gibault played clean basketball in a 63-52 win at home over Mater Dei. The Hawks committed only two turnovers on the night. 

Kesler again led the way with 21 points and 11 rebounds. Kaden Augustine added 15 points and Hudson Blank scored 13 points.

Last Tuesday, the Hawks won 65-43 at Fox. Kaden Augustine scored 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Kesler, Blank and Kameron Hanvey added 11 points each.

Kaden Augustine leads Gibault in scoring at 17 points per game this season, followed by Kesler at 13.5 points per game. 

Gibault opens the holiday tourney at 5 p.m. Tuesday against Marquette, followed by an 11 a.m. Wednesday matchup with Piasa Southwestern. At 5 p.m. Wednesday, the Hawks battle Freeburg.

Columbia is also 8-2 on the season after winning two of three recent games. 

The Eagles lost to a tough Taylor Ridge Rockridge squad in Abingdon-Avon on Saturday, 59-53. Columbia was outscored 26-18 in the fourth quarter.

Dylan Murphy led the Eagles with 20 points, followed by Jack Steckler with 17 points.

On Friday, Columbia posted a 62-31 win over Monmouth-Roseville. Murphy again led the way with 25 points (5-for-5 from three-point range) and Steckler again scored 17 as the Eagles shot 68 percent from the floor.

Last Tuesday, Columbia won easily at home over Steeleville, 64-29. Murphy scored 19 points, with Steckler and Sam Donald each adding 12 points. 

Prior to next week’s tourney, the Eagles played Tuesday at Roxana and play Friday at Breese Central.

Columbia begins the tourney at 2 p.m. Tuesday against Nelson County, Ky., followed by a 6:30 p.m. Tuesday showdown with rival Waterloo. On Wednesday, the Eagles battle Civic Memorial at 2 p.m.

Murphy is averaging 21.8 points per game this season, including 56 percent shooting from three-point range.

Waterloo (2-6) lost two of three recent games.

On Saturday, the Bulldogs pulled off a 45-44 overtime victory over St. Vincent at the Perryville Shootout. 

Alex Stell scored 18 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead the ‘Dogs. Wyatt Fink added 14 points – eight in overtime – and 10 rebounds 

Waterloo won the battle of the boards in this contest, 32-15.

On Friday, Waterloo dropped a 46-33 contest at home to Civic Memorial. The ‘Dogs shot just 27 percent from the floor. 

Caleb Yochum scored 12 points and Stell added 11 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks.

Last Tuesday, Waterloo lost 61-49 to Freeburg. The Bulldogs committed 19 turnovers to Freeburg’s nine.

Yochum scored 14 points, Fink scored 13 points and grabbed 10 rebounds and Stell contributed 11 points.

Waterloo played Tuesday at Jerseyville before entering next week’s tourney. 

Waterloo will face Civic Memorial at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday before taking on Columbia that evening. On Wednesday, the Bulldogs battle Nelson County at 12:30 p.m. 

Stell, a 6-foot-9 sophomore, is averaging 13.3 points, nearly 10 rebounds and 3.5 blocks per game. Fink is averaging 11.4 points per game.

Valmeyer (2-6) dropped a 77-43 contest to Steeleville on Friday despite Harry Miller scoring 17 points. 

Valmeyer hosted Dupo on Tuesday. 

Miller leads the Pirates in scoring this season at 18.4 points per game.

Dupo (2-5) lost Friday at New Athens, 79-31. The Tigers trailed 29-2 after the first quarter.

Last Wednesday, Dupo lost 57-30 to Steeleville. Tommy Williams led the Tigers with 14 points.

Last Tuesday, Dupo won 58-49 at Mt. Olive. Deegan Prater scored 21 points and Trey Chadduck added 15.

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