By ELLIOTT SCHREINER Daily Record Sports Writer BERLIN — The machine is getting wound back up again. The Classic in the Country will take its fifth go-round at the Perry Reese Community Center this weekend. The showcase, which runs Saturday, Sunday and Monday, features pretty well everything the state has to offer in girls basketball,…

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By JOHN HOWLEY OGBR Staff Writer How many times have you been looking through the media guide during Classic in the Country Challenge and come across the Weatherman’s predictions and thought to yourself, “What was this guy thinking?” “I know I think that sometimes after the games are over,” the Weatherman said. Well, if you…

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By JOHN HOWLEY OGBR Staff Writer For the past four years in January, the tiny town of Berlin has welcomed in some of the most talented basketball players the state of Ohio has to offer. This year will be no different as 29 teams take part in Classic in the Country V. One group of…

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Five years ago, Hiland girls’ basketball coach Dave Schlabach and Ohio Girls Basketball Report author Tom Jenkins created Classic in the Country Challenge to generate some interest in traveling to Holmes County during the off-season. By bringing in more than two dozen of the very best girls basketball team in the state of Ohio to square off during one exciting weekend, they thought they could inject some excitement into the county.

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“Conservatively, the Classic generates more than $1 million per year,” said Shasta Mast, director of the Holmes County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism. Mast uses a statewide formula based on the average amount of money a tourist spends when staying overnight in an area, as well as one who comes and visits for the day.

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In a month, some of the best teams and players in Ohio high school girls basketball will descend on Berlin for the fifth annual Classic in the Country Challenge from January 19-21. This season, the event will welcome the reigning state champions in Division I (Cincinnati Mount Notre Dame) and Division IV (Columbus Africentric), along with Div. II finalist Shaker Heights Hathaway Brown. In addition, out of state powers Lexington Catholic (KY) and Bishop McGuinness (NC) will be in town.

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