The Fitz tournament highlights top area teams for a good cause
The Dan Fitzgerald Memorial Basketball Showcase, “The Fitz,” is a premier high school basketball tournament held in Spokane – hosted by Lewis and Clark High School – to honor the memory of legendary coach Dan Fitzgerald.
Fitzgerald was a legendary basketball coach at Gonzaga, Santa Clara and Archbishop Mitty High School in California.
This year will be the eighth annual event.
Local boys teams from Ferris and Lewis and Clark, as well as girls teams from Mt. Spokane and Lewis and Clark, round out the field.
Fitzgerald was active, during and after his coaching career, with local charities, including the Spokane Gospel Mission Outreach, Boys and Girls Club of Spokane and local youth sports organizations among others.
To keep his legacy of service and commitment alive, the net proceeds of The Fitz Tournament go to charities selected by the Fitzgerald family.
Cans of food donated as admission at the tournament are delivered to the Second Harvest Food Bank by local team members.
Local team profiles
Lewis and Clark boys: Finished third in State 4A last season with a 20-9 record. Preseason ranked No. 6 by Seattle Times with two starters and six lettermen returning. Led by second-team all-league 6-foot-4 guard Griffin Effenberger and forward Xavier Guillory, a first-team selection in football.
Ferris boys: Went 18-5 last season and placed second in GSL 4A, but lost four starters to graduation, including a pair of first-team all-league players. Guard Reece Van Lierop and transfer Cole Omlin (Cheney) will do the heavy lifting for the Saxons.
Lewis and Clark girls: Went 16-9 last season and 11-3 in league, good for second place and a trip to state. Preseason ranked No. 2 by Seattle Times. First-team all-league senior Jacinta Buckley is headed to UNLV and will contend for league player of the year honors.
Mt. Spokane girls: Return five starters and nine lettermen to state-qualifying team last season that finished 15-11 and third in GSL. Preseason No. 6 six in state 3A. First-team all-league guard Aspyn Adams (Loyola Marymount) hit seven 3-pointers in Wildcats’ season-opening 78-34 win over Moses Lake on Tuesday.