Basketball's second season arrives next week for all Lee County school teams. District tournaments offer a mix of playoff formats after some coaches pitched ideas for change.
Ida Baker and Island Coast take underdog roles into the District 6A-13 Tournament to be played at South Fort Myers. Baker (3-21), the No. 5 seed in the five-team district, opens against No. 4 Riverdale at 7 p.m. Tuesday. Island Coast (12-13), seeded third, plays No. 2 South Fort Myers in the semifinals at 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Each of the District 5A-13 Tournament games will be played on the home floor of the highest seeded team.
The higher seed as host format surfaced in a couple of district soccer tournaments last month.
"Some thought it was unfair for the top seeded teams, so there was a push that they get to play on their home floor," said Mariner coach James Harris. "It would help generate revenue, too, considering travel."
The top-seeded Tritons (15-10), therefore, likely would play two home games to nail down a district title instead of having to travel to Lemon Bay, the official district host school.
"We'll have our hands full, and Cape Coral and Lemon Bay will have a dogfight," said Harris. "The semifinal game is the toughest game to win all year. We can't take it lightly or we'll be in trouble. We have to make sure we are ready."
The Tritons await the winner between Cypress Lake and North Fort Myers in the semifinals on Wednesday. No. 2 seed Cape Coral (11-15) and Lemon Bay face off in the other semifinal at The Nest.
District championship games are set for Friday night, except District 3A-11 at Seacrest on Saturday.