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Frye BB Tournament Hits Holiday Season


Posted Date: 12/18/2021

After a year hiatus, the Bill Frye Invitational will once again bring in a bevy of local basketball talent to Mansfield High School Gymnasium.

The world wide pandemic put the brakes on all invitational tournaments across the state last year. Part of that fallout was the cancellation of the long standing Frye Invitational. Now, regular season tournaments are back in vogue with full capacity seating for rabid fans.

Mansfield, with a huge assist from Today’s Bank as the title sponsor, will once again play host to the holiday classic.

The three day basketball tournament will begin on Tuesday, December 28 with a seven game slate. The second round will continue on Wednesday, December 29 with semi-final matchups.. Consolation games and finals will conclude on Thursday, December 30. 

In all, 22 games and 10 competing schools will settle the score for bragging rights to the Bill Frye / Today’s Bank trophy. 

George W. “Bill” Frye helped put Mansfield on the map as far as basketball is concerned. Holding the reins to the program for many years, Coach Frye led the Lady Tigers to their first ever state basketball championship back in 1986. At the time, it was only the second time in school history that a Mansfield team of any sport finished with such distinction.

Frye spent 35 of his 38 years in education teaching and coaching at Mansfield High School. He retired in 2015 as the school’s winningest senior girls coach with 400 victories to his credit. He also left the Tiger athletic program with the most wins as coach of the high school baseball team.

Today’s Bank of Mansfield joined the tournament festivities a few seasons ago. As corporate sponsors, they have annually donated time and money to bring the basketball atmosphere inside the Tiger gym to a high level.

Looking at the brackets, a good show featuring talented teams from two states is expected. On the men’s side, Scott County rivals Mansfield and Waldron lead a competitive field. Booneville and Hackett return as original participants of the decade old invitational. Pocola and Vian cross the border from Oklahoma to join the fray. Pea Ridge and Paris make their first trip to the holiday hoopfest.

The women’s bracket will see two new names join the mix. Shiloh Christain and Mulberry make the marquee along with familiar teams Booneville, Hackett, Mansfield, Vian, and Waldron. 

New School was slated to give the women’s side their eighth team. An unexpected cancellation left that side a team short prompting tournament director Josh Brown to award the Booneville Lady Cats a first round bye.

B Frye

Retired Mansfield basketball coach Bill Frye will welcome players and coaches to Tiger Gymnasium for the Bill Frye/Today’s Bank Invitational Basketball Tournament on Dec. 28-30.

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Mansfield School District
402 Grove St.
Mansfield, Arkansas 72944
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Joe Staton, Superintendent

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