The week prior to the Thanksgiving holiday is always a treat for high school hoops fans and this year is no exception.

Both the Howe and Van Alstyne girls’ basketball teams will play in tournaments, Howe in Bells and the Lady Panthers will travel to Ponder.

The 2016 Bells Varsity Tournament is a 12-team setup with four pools of three teams each.

The Lady Bulldogs are in Pool C and on Thursday, Nov. 17th they played Whitesboro at 10:15 in the middle school gym.

Fans can stroll across the parking lot to the high school at 12:45 and catch them in action against Aubrey.

Early information on either of these teams has yet to be revealed, but coach James Garner at Whitesboro is expected to have competitive teams.

He coached for a few years in Leonard and those teams battled all day.

The same can be said about Aubrey coach Ron Gathright.

He was the girls’ coach and athletic director at S&S before an administrative turnover at that school.

Bells, Commerce and Cooper are in Pool A and Bells comes into the season ranked eighth in class 2-A by the Texas Girls’ Coaches Association.

Pottsboro in in Pool B and the Lady Cardinals are currently unranked by the TGCA. They will be before the season is over.

Decatur and Leonard are going to battle in Pool D and their 11:30 game at the high school gym will be one to see.

This event will be a big test for the Lady Bulldogs who have struggled to score in the first two games.

Van Alstyne will go north to play in the Ponder Lady Lions Tournament, a 10-team event.

Alvord, Boyd, Gunter and something called Eaton will join Van Alstyne in Pool B. Ponder,Valley View, Lake Worth, Wichita Falls Hirschi and Community are in Pool A.

This writer’s firsthand knowledge about these teams is slim to known, but what is known is that two years ago Alvord had a strong team, going three rounds deep in the postseason. Last year, Alvord won its bi-district game after a second-place finish in the district.

Van Alstyne handled Gunter pretty easily in the opening game of the season, but things do change.

Ponder had a young team last season and finished third in District 10-3A.