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Although Seymour has won The Seymour Bank Winter Classic twice, the Tigers never had been the tourney’s top seed in its decade-long history.

That ended last week.

With a perfect 6-0 record when tournament coaches met last Tuesday, Dec. 14, Seymour was the unanimous selection as the No. 1 seed for the 2022 tourney, which begins play on Monday, Jan. 3, at the Seymour High School gymnasium and continues through Saturday, Jan. 8.

There is a full field of eight schools in the varsity tournament, while four schools compete in a round-robin event for junior-varsity squads.

Seymour’s varsity will open tourney play at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 3, against eighth-seeded Dora, a Class 2 district opponent.

Tournament seeds included: 1. Seymour, 2. Mountain Grove, 3. Chadwick, 4. Springfield Lighthouse Christian, 5. Bradleyville, 6. Bakersfield, 7. Theodosia-Lutie, 8. Dora. Bakersfield and Dora are new to the tourney.

They replace Cabool and Mountain View Liberty.

“It’s a solid field,” Tiger head coach Chris Hastings said.

“Although we received the No. 1 seed, Chadwick or Mountain Grove just as easily could’ve earned it. Both of those schools have very strong teams, as does the fourth seed, Lighthouse Christian of Springfield.”

When coaches seeded the tournament, Seymour’s record was 6-0, while Mountain Grove had an 0-3 mark.

“At that time, they were the best 0-3 team in the state,” Hastings said with a smile. “Grove’s three losses are close ones to state-ranked teams from Hartville, Springfield Catholic and Springfield Greenwood.”

Chadwick’s record was 5-2 with losses to Sparta and Strafford. Both defeats came as the Cardinals were playing without a Class 1 All-State returnee.

“Chadwick won this tournament last year and basically have that entire team back this season,” Hastings noted.

“A year ago, they opened the season with something like 16 straight wins, then won their district championship.”

Lighthouse Christian’s record was 5-4.

However, in three games against teams that aren’t homeschool squads, the Chargers’ record was 2-1 with victories over Joplin McAuley and Wheaton. Their lone loss was by two points to Joplin Thomas Jefferson.

Other teams in the tourney and their records at last week’s seed meeting were Bradleyville at 3-4, Bakersfield at 2-2, Lutie at 0-2 and Dora at 0-7.

In the junior-varsity tournament, there are four teams that will compete in a round-robin format.

Jayvee squads include Bakersfield, Dora, Mountain Grove and Seymour.

Seymour opens tourney play at 4 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 3, against Dora’s junior varsity.

The Seymour varsity game against Dora follows.

Games at The Seymour Bank Winter Classic will be played on five days — Monday, Jan. 3, Tuesday, Jan. 4, Thursday, Jan. 6, Friday, Jan. 7, and Saturday, Jan. 8.

The jayvee tourney concludes on Friday, Jan. 7.

Final-round action on Saturday, Jan. 8, begins at 1 p.m. with the varsity’s seventh-place contest, followed by the fifth-place game at 2:30 p.m. The third-place varsity game is at 4 p.m., with the tourney’s championship contest slated for 5:30 p.m.

Complete tournament brackets are available at no charge upon request at the Webster County Citizen office, located on the west side of the Seymour square.

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