The bracket for the 36th annual Ardmore Holiday Festival Tournament has been revealed, and the opening round features a matchup between Central and Putnam City (Oklahoma City) on Thursday, Dec. 27 in Ardmore, Okla.
Central is making its first appearance in the tournament. This is also the first time the Tigers are scheduled to travel outside of Arkansas state lines in more than a decade.
The first-round game against Putnam City will tipoff at 8:00 p.m. The Tigers will face either Southmoore (Moore, Okla.) or Del City (Del City, Okla.) in the second round.
The other side of the bracket features Nolan Catholic (Fort Worth, Texas), Palestine (Palestine, Texas), host-team Ardmore, and defending Oklahoma 6A state champions Putnam City North (Oklahoma City).
•Putnam City has won five state titles in its program's history, winning three 6A championships (largest classification in Oklahoma) in just four years from 2007-10
•Southmoore finished as the Regional runner-up to eventual state champion Putnam City North last season; qualified for Area tournament
•Del City has been to three of the past five state tournaments (only eight teams qualify) and is one of the top contenders in Oklahoma's 5A classification this year
•Nolan Catholic has won 20 or more games in each of the past three seasons and appeared in the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS) 6A state quarterfinals last year; roster returns a duo of college basketball commits to UTSA and ETBU, as well as a Notre Dame football commit
•Ardmore won 4A Districts and Regionals last season, finishing with a 19-7 overall record; appeared in Holiday Festival Tournament finals in 2017
•Palestine made it to the Round of 32 in the UIL 4A Region 1 & 3 tournament last year, finishing with 17 wins total; currently unbeaten at 11-0 and ranked as one of the top 50 teams in Texas per MaxPreps
•Putnam City North won the 2018 Oklahoma 6A state championship vs. Edmond Santa Fe (Edmond, Okla.) the first basketball state title in school history; finished 2017-18 season with a 25-5 record