A west Michigan small college holiday sports tradition unfolds for the 13th year on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 28-29, as Hope College hosts its 13th annual Russ DeVette Holiday Classic men's basketball tournament.
The tournament, to be played at the Holland Civic Center, is named in honor of Russ DeVette, coach of the Flying Dutchmen for a quarter of a century until his retirement from basketball coaching in 1977.
Games on Friday will pit Taylor University of Upland, Ind. against Mt. Union College of Alliance, Ohio at 6 p.m., followed by Hope against Madonna University of Livonia at 8 p.m.
Games on Saturday will be played at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Hope will play in the 3 p.m. game no matter the outcome of Friday's game.
The Flying Dutchmen are the defending champions. Hope defeated North Central, Ill. 86-80 in last year's championship game to claim the classic crown for the seventh time.
Taylor will be making its second appearance in the tournament. The Trojans were third in the 1996 tournament. Mt. Union and Madonna are appearing in the tournament for the first time.
The traditional pre-tournament luncheon will be held Friday, Dec. 28 at noon in the Maas Auditorium on the Hope campus. Advance reservations can be made by calling the Hope College Office of Public Relations, 395-7860.
While the tournament traditionally draws large crowds to the games, there will be plenty of general admission tickets available at the Civic Center each day.