High School Sports

Here’s what to expect from this year’s I-10/I-20 Blast Tournament

St. Stanislaus striker Corbin Blanchard puts a shot past Clinton goalie Cesar Camacho at Milner Stadium in Gulfport on Saturday Jan. 9, 2015.
St. Stanislaus striker Corbin Blanchard puts a shot past Clinton goalie Cesar Camacho at Milner Stadium in Gulfport on Saturday Jan. 9, 2015. jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com file

The I-10/I-20 Blast Tournament is practically bursting at the seams, but Chris Pryor doesn’t mind.

This is the 10th year for the annual soccer tournament, which attracts some of the region’s top teams. As far as high school soccer tournaments are concerned, it’s hard to find many bigger or better. The 2017 version features more than 60 teams, which will compete Friday and Saturday at the Gulfport Sportsplex, St. Patrick, West Harrison, the Gulfport High track field and two other venues in Gulfport — Milner Stadium and Herbert Wilson Field.

“What’s been unique about I-10/I-20 is you have teams coming from all parts of the state,” said Pryor, who organizes the tournament on top of coaching the Gulfport girls soccer team. “It’s the opportunity for some teams on the Coast that don’t normally travel to play teams they wouldn’t normally see. I think that’s the biggest draw.”

This year’s tournament features St. Andrews, Sacred Heart (Louisiana), Sacred Heart (Mississippi), South Jones, West Jones, Madison Central, Meridian, Clinton, Oak Grove, Pearl, Petal and Jackson Prep. They’ll compete against Our Lady Academy, St. Patrick, Pass Christian, Bay, Gautier, Pascagoula, West Harrison, Biloxi, George County, Gulfport, Hancock, Ocean Springs, St. Stanislaus, Moss Point, Stone and St. Martin, among others.

“You have a lot of teams at 6A/5A/4A/3A using this as a tuneup for playoffs, not just district,” Pryor said. “I think at any given time at any time slot you’ll see a quality game.”

Big matchup

One of the marquee matchups pits reigning Class 6A boys champion Madison Central against South State champion Ocean Springs at 10:30 a.m. Saturday on Field 2 at the Gulfport Sportsplex. The Lady Jaguars and Lady Greyhounds will play immediately after at noon.

“I think it’s kind of understood we want to match up with them,” OSHS boys coach Jeff French said. “Chris does a really good job of helping out and being accommodating.

“If you’re doing a tournament, you want good teams and matchups all the way around and that’s what Chris does.”

Weather?

Weather could be a concern, but Pryor said Thursday they’re moving forward as planned.

“As long as it’s safe, we’ll proceed,” he said. “If people are coming out, it’ll be worth it.”

Tickets are good for any game at any venue on the day they’re purchased.

For schedule updates, check @GHSFutbol and @GHSAthletics on Twitter.

Patrick Ochs: 228-896-2321, @PatrickOchs

I-10/I-20 Blast Tournament varsity schedule

Time

Herbert Wilson

GHS Track Field

Milner Stadium

St. Patrick

West Harrison

Friday

4:30 p.m.

Resurrection vs. Jackson Prep

6 p.m.

Gulfport girls vs. Madison Central

Oak Grove girls vs. St. Martin

7:30 p.m.

Gulfport vs. Madison Central

Hancock vs. Oak Grove

Saturday

9 a.m.

Gautier girls vs. Pass Christian

Pascagoula vs. Clinton

St. Patrick girls vs. Pearl

West Harrison vs. Sacred Heart

10:30 a.m.

Moss Point vs. Petal

South Jones girls vs. Clinton

Biloxi vs. Jackson Prep

Pass Christian vs. Resurrection

West Harrison girls vs. Sacred Heart

Noon

St. Andrews girls vs. Gautier

Hancock vs. Clinton

Pascagoula girls vs. Sacred Heart

St. Patrick vs. St. Andrews

West Harrison vs. St. Stanislaus

1:30 p.m.

Clinton girls vs. Sacred Heart

South Jones vs. Ocean Springs

Petal girls vs. St. Patrick

3 p.m.

St. Andrews girls vs. Pass Christian

St. Stanislaus vs. St. Andrews

Moss Point vs. Gautier

Pearl vs. St. Patrick

Pass Christian vs. Sacred Heart

4:30 p.m.

Sacred Heart girls vs. St. Martin

Oak Grove vs. South Jones

Resurrection girls vs. Hancock

I-10/I-20 Blast Tournament Schedule

Gulfport Sportsplex

Time

Field 1

Field 2

Field 3

Field 4

Saturday

10:30 a.m.

Gulfport girls vs. West Jones

Madison Central vs. Ocean Springs

Bay vs. Meridian

Bay girls vs. Petal

Noon

Gulfport vs. West Jones

Madison Central girls vs. Ocean Springs

Resurrection girls vs. Meridian

1:30 p.m.

West Jones girls vs. Our Lady Academy

Biloxi girls vs. South Jones

Jackson Prep vs. Oak Grove

George County girls vs. Pearl

3 p.m.

Biloxi vs. Meridian

George County boys vs. Stone

4:30 p.m.

Oak Grove girls vs. Biloxi

Pascagoula vs. West Jones

George County girls vs. Bay

6 p.m.

Gautier vs. Stone

George County vs. Bay

Meridian girls vs. Pascagoula

Petal vs. Pearl

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