For the fifth time, Madison will be the host for the State Amateur Basketball Tournament. The tournament will run Saturday and Sunday in the Madison High School and Madison Middle School gyms.
"The high school gym will be used all day Saturday and Sunday," said Eric Hortness, executive director of the Greater Madison Area Chamber of Commerce. "There will be four games played in the middle school gym on Saturday. This is the first time two gyms will be used, and that is one reason Madison was awarded the bid."
The 74th annual tournament will for the first time utilize a new three-division format -- A, B and C divisions. All of the teams qualifying will be guaranteed two games during the tournament.
According to the South Dakota Amateur Basketball Association, the new C division was created to encourage new teams to join the association and have a division to enter without having to compete against much more experienced teams with former college players.
There will be 18 teams, six in each division. In the A division will be four teams from Sioux Falls, Madison Alumni Sporty's and Mitchell DWU Alums. In the B division will be one team each from Sioux Falls, Watertown, Volga, Sturgis, Wolsey-Wessington and Madison Stadium. In the C division will be one team each from Sioux Falls, Watertown, Lennox, Redfield, Faulkton and Lake Preston.
Playing for the Madison Alumni Sporty's team are Chad and Mitch White, Taylor Bloom, Brian Miller, Robby Schaefer, Michael Sullivan, Trevor Johnson, Tom Kahler (Dell Rapids) and Cody Symens (Willow Lake).
According to Sullivan, this core group has played in the state tournament twice, three years ago in Huron and last year in Sturgis.
"Eric contacted my dad and asked if we could form a team last year to go out to Sturgis as Madison was in line to host the tournament this year," Sullivan said.
Team members for Madison Stadium are Mason Sullivan, Braxton Olson, Preston Nordling, Brandon Schrepel, Cody Bunger, Marcus Vanden Bosch, Justin Deberry and Josh Giles.
"Some of the players played on the team last year that went to Sturgis," Mason Sullivan said. "This will be the first state tournament for most of the players."
Last year, Madison won one game at the state tournament.
Other players from around the Madison area who will be playing on different teams during the tournament are Trae VandeBerg and Sheldon Siemonsma (Sioux Falls Ambush); Ty Hoglund (DWU Alums); Derek Kreutzfeldt (Volga); and Logan DeRungs, Tyler Tappe, Kyle Krahn, Hunter Breske and Brady Clark (Lake Preston).
Fans will be allowed to attend the tournament. Admission is $6 for adults and $3 for students per day. There will be 12 games on Saturday and nine on Sunday.
All games will be livestreamed with a pay per view option; www.liveticket.tv will stream the games. A day pass for the pay per view will be $10. Liveticket is the same group that streams the State Amateur Baseball Tournament each summer.
"All fans in attendance will be required to wear masks and follow Madison Central School District protocols," Hortness said.
Champions from 2020 included A Sioux Falls 78, Rapid City 73; B Corsica 88, Pierre 79; C Sturgis 62, Brookings 56.
Madison has one State Amateur Basketball championship. Madison beat Eagle Butte 93-76 at Redfield in the 1974 tournament.