The Versailles boys basketball team will be playing in the Capital City Shootout for the first time later this month, and the Tigers already anticipate a few benefits that will come from participating in the event.
"Well, No. 1, I think it's fun," coach Kent Thomas said Wednesday at the kickoff event for the Showcase at Joe Machens Capital City Ford. "I mean, the kids enjoy it, and it kind of reinforces your program if you get a chance to play in these things every once in a while. It just kind of adds to the appeal to the kids, because they like to have fun."
Of course, there are some competitive benefits as well, Thomas said.
"I think from a coaching standpoint, when you play in these events where they're kind of neutral floor, there's some extra pressure," he said. "It can help you down the road in some district play."
Though his Tigers will be making their debut in the Showcase, Versailles has competed at the MFA Oil Break Time Shootout at Mizzou Arena.
The Tigers will face the Hermann Bearcats at 7 p.m. Dec. 19 at Fleming Fieldhouse.
"I haven't had a chance to watch some film" of Hermann, Thomas said.
"I've got a couple films on them, but traditionally they've had good programs over there. They've had good athletes, and I don't expect anything different."
Versailles is currently 2-3 and will play look to get to .500 between now and the Hermann game with a Dec. 15 meeting against Cole Camp.
The Blair Oaks Lady Falcons and the California Lady Pintos will also be taking part in the event.
Blair Oaks will face Hermann at 5:30 p.m., while California is scheduled to take on Owensville at 4 p.m.