MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – The 39th Annual Beach Ball Classic is happening now in Myrtle Beach.
The basketball tournament features some of the nations top high school teams from places like Ohio, California, Nevada and Arizona. This year, the 16 teams come from 8 states.
The tournament was originally held at Socastee High School and now has grown to accommodate 16 teams at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center.
John Rhodes is the executive director of the Beach Ball Classic and tells News13, this event was the first to bring sports tourism to our area.
“We’re bringing notoriety and attention to our community and it helps us drive more fans here, and not only this week for great high school basketball, but also to give an opportunity to see what Myrtle Beach is about,” Rhodes said.
19 of the tournament’s games will be nationally-televised.
There is also a Palmetto State team playing in the Beach Ball Classic and Rhodes says they have a good chance of bringing home the championship.
“Dorman which is the strongest South Carolina team we’ve had in this tournament since Eau Claire won it 30 years ago, and that’s been the only team from South Carolina that’s ever really gotten to the finals,” Rhodes explained.
Dorman High School is in Roebuck, South Carolina, and won its first game of the tournament 72-45 over Buchtel out of Ohio.
Just last weekend, a girls basketball tournament was held at the Myrtle Beach Sports Center and Convention Center. The Crescom Holiday Invitational featured 56 premier high school teams, the tournament grew from 16 teams in years prior.
The Beach Ball Classic will continue through the weekend and conclude with a championship game on New Year’s Eve.
Click here to view the tournament schedule.