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HVL-TRC Showdown comes back to life Saturday

After a three-year hiatus, the Hiawatha Valley League-Three Rivers Conference Showdown in girls and boys basketball will be played again on Saturday at Mayo Civic Center. A total of 13 games are on tap.

Stewartville, Byron girls basketball
Stewartville’s Haylie Strum (2) controls the ball while defended by Byron’s Kendra Harvey (24) during a girls basketball game on Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2022, at Stewartville High School. Strum's Tigers and Harvey's Bears will both be playing in the HVL-TRC Showdown on Saturday at Mayo Civic Center.
Traci Westcott / Post Bulletin
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ROCHESTER — The “Showdown” is on again.

After three years of the “Showdown” being shut down, the HVL-TRC Showdown girls and boys basketball showcase will happen beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday at Mayo Civic Center.

It matches many of the top teams from the Hiawatha Valley League against many of the Three Rivers Conference’s best. Seven of the games will be played in the Arena, six in the Auditorium.

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The HVL-TRC Showdown had a three-year run before the COVID-19 pandemic stepped in, as well scheduling snafus with Mayo Civic Center. That left it idle for three seasons.

Tournament director Matt Halverson is thrilled to have been able to bring it back to life. He says he’s not the only one.

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“I think people are extremely excited about it,” said Halverson, who is also the Goodhue boys basketball coach. “This is a way to showcase what are two very good conferences, not just in southeastern Minnesota, but all of Minnesota. This tournament draws a lot of interest. It was also a goal of our committee to make it affordable (all-day pass $8 for adults, $5 for students) to fans in southeastern Minnesota. We went to cater to the fans, for them to be able to come out and watch games at both venues without too much out-of-pocket expense.”

A total of eight girls games will be played, ending with a terrific matchup with blazing teams Stewartville and Caledonia at 7:15 in the Auditorium. There will be five boys games, including an excellent closer at 8:30 p.m. in the Arena between Lourdes and Plainview-Elgin-Millville.

All seven of the games in the Arena will offer something unique, though it will become a staple beginning next year at all Minnesota high school girls and boys games. That is the use of a 35-second shot clock.

Halverson is excited to employ it for the tournament, and as he says is the case for most coaches, is thrilled that it will become a fixture at all high school basketball games in a year.

“I’m looking forward to it,” Halverson said. “Nobody wants to see players (stalling with the ball) for 4 minutes. Nobody wants to pay to watch players stand. This has been wanted for a while. I’m glad it’s going to happen.”

For seven straight games on Saturday at the Arena, players, coaches, scoreboard operators and fans will get a sneak preview of just what a high school basketball game looks and feels like with timed possessions.

SATURDAY

At Mayo Civic Center

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GIRLS

Kasson-Mantorville vs. Dover-Eyota, 10 a.m. (Arena)

Byron vs. Winona Cotter, 10:30 a.m. (Auditorium)

Lewiston-Altura vs. Pine Island, 12:15 p.m. (Auditorium)

Cannon Falls vs. Fillmore Central, 1:30 p.m. (Arena)

Goodhue vs. La Crescent-Hokah, 2 p.m. (Auditorium)

Lake City vs. Plainview-Elgin-Millville, 3:15 p.m. (Arena)

Zumbrota-Mazeppa vs. Chatfield, 5 p.m. (Arena)

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Stewartville vs. Caledonia, 7:15 p.m. (Auditorium)

BOYS

La Crescent vs. Cannon Falls, 11:45 a.m. (Arena)

Wabasha-Kellogg vs. Goodhue, 3:45 p.m. (Auditorium)

Pine Island vs. Caledonia, 5:30 p.m. (Auditorium)

Chatfield vs. Zumbrota-Mazeppa, 6:45 p.m. (Arena)

Lourdes vs. Plainview-Elgin-Millville, 8:30 p.m. (Arena)

Pat has been a Post Bulletin sports reporter since 1994. He covers Rochester John Marshall football, as well as a variety of other southeastern Minnesota football teams. Among my other southeastern Minnesota high school beats are girls basketball, boys and girls tennis, boys and girls track and field, high school and American Legion baseball, volleyball, University of Minnesota sports (on occasion) and the Timberwolves (on occasion). Readers can reach Pat at 507-285-7723 or pruff@postbulletin.com.
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