The Stuttgart Holiday Basketball Tournament ended Saturday with the home team celebrating and the upcoming stretch run of the DODDS-Europe hoops season looking very interesting.
Host Patch beat Wiesbaden 66-48 in the championship game of the DODDS-sanctioned three-day, 12-team tournament. CeJay Ferguson scored 16, Brendan Jones added 15 and John Robinson chipped in 13 for the Panthers, offsetting a game-high 17-point effort from Warrior Darren Williams.
Emilio Moreno scored 23 points as Kaiserslautern beat Lakenheath 53-38 to claim third place.
The field, a mix of DODDS-Europe Division I and II teams, international schools and local German club teams, was whittled down to four for Saturday's decisive rounds. The four semifinalists to emerge were also the only four DODDS-Europe Division I teams in the bracket.
The tournament's games were shorter than regulation DODDS games, several teams deployed incomplete rosters and the games don't count towards regular-season records, But the outcomes do point towards compelling competition when the DODDS-Europe season resumes Jan. 10.
Defending Division I champion Patch should glean some confidence from beating Wiesbaden, the only remaining unbeaten team in Division I. And Kaiserslautern built on its promising December, suffering just one loss in the tournament and wrapping up its holiday break with a convincing win over Lakenheath. The four will jostle with rivals Ramstein and Vilseck heading into the European tournament next month.
The tournament held pool play Thursday, quarterfinals Friday and semifinals and the championship game Saturday. Patch beat Kaiserslautern 57-48 and Wiesbaden beat Lakenheath 35-29 early Saturday to set up the afternoon final.
Patch's Jones was named tournament MVP. Panther teammates John Robinson and Kelvin Brown joined him on the all-tournament team alongside Kaiserslautern's Moreno and Lorenzo Williams, Wiesbaden's Williams and Fred Hannah and Lakenheath's AJ Ransom.