Ad Spot
A battle on the basketball court between the two cities of Huntsville and Birmingham has been scheduled and will carry the title of The 256-205 Challenge presented by Bryant Bank. The matchups featuring 16 teams are part of a two-year agreement for the Challenge.

256-205 Challenge Basketball Games Set For Upcoming Season

MADISON- An eight-on-eight boys high school basketball event like no other is set to highlight the magnificent talents of 16 teams from two of the state’s four area codes. Bryant Bank, in conjunction with the Alabama High School Athletic Association and Knight-Eady, a Birmingham-based sports events agency, is hosting the first 256 vs. 205 Challenge.

The battle between eight selected teams from each of the area codes will face teams from the opposing area code in games Jan. 16-Feb. 2. The squads will represent the Huntsville area versus the Birmingham metro. Over the course of two weeks, the teams will clash in an attempt to earn points for a victory toward its overall city’s score. At the completion of the two weeks one city will be crowned champion.

“We got this idea from last year’s Border Battle held at one location as we like the idea of a city versus city as we feel it’s better to play these games at the high schools,” said Summer Hall of Knight-Eady. Meanwhile, Michael Eady, President and owner of Knight Eady, said, “We’ve hosted similar battles, but all have been at a neutral site. This year, we’re taking it one step further and bringing the games back to the schools because there’s nothing like having your community and student body behind you as you battle between some of the best programs in the state.”

“It excites me to know we get to play a Birmingham school and I’m up for the challenge,” said Will Hawkins (G, 6-4, 160, Sr.) of Sparkman High which will host Birmingham’s Ramsay High on Jan. 24.

The complete Challenge schedule includes: Jan. 16- Vestavia at Muscle Shoals, Grissom at Oak Mt.; Jan. 17- Huntsville at Pinson Valley; Jan. 20- Haleyville at Midfield; Jan. 24- Ramsay at Sparkman; Jan. 28- Shades Valley at Gadsden City; Jan. 30- Spain Park at James Clemens; Feb. 2- Thompson at Florence.

“This is a great situation for all the teams involved as some say Birmingham has the best basketball in the state, but we have something to show them in this challenge and I’m up for the idea of giving the people what they want to see,” said Frankie Sullivan head coach of James Clemens. “This has always been a football state and this is a chance to show it can be a basketball state, too.”

The Jets just missed a Class 7-A state title in a last second 66-64 loss to Enterprise in the state championship game in the 2021-2022 season. A chance to redeem themselves against the visiting Jaguars will be the order on Jan. 30 as the Jets have two starters and eight players overall returning from last season’s state runner-up squad.

“Spain park will be well coached as they will be tall and very athletic, but I feel we’ll be up for the challenge,” said Sullivan. “Our players feel as though they want to finish the job. They have been great in their off-season conditioning and practice. They each understand it’s the little things that matter and they are excited about this game against Spain Park as they want to play against the best possible opponents and Spain Park will be one of those.”

For the Sparkman Senators, 24-9 a season ago, the Challenge game versus the Rams (5-A) is the chance to play a different classification and a school they normally would not face.

“I love the idea of playing someone new and I feel our team can take on the challenge,” said Sparkman sophomore Kahleel Green (G, 6-4, 170, So.).

“I know Ramsay is a great team, but this is a chance to represent our area as this is important to us and a pride thing for me personally,” added Hawkins, the only returning starter for Sparkman.

Chase Bell (G, 6-4, 170, Sr.) one of three seniors for Sparkman, added, “I feel I’m filling the gap in rebounding and other areas for our team and the game against Ramsay in the Challenge will come down to who wants it. I’ve got the fight in me for this game.”

Jamie Coggins, head coach of Sparkman, feels the caliber of basketball in the Huntsville area (256) can play with any team in the Birmingham area (205).

“Anything to try to promote our sport is what I like about the Challenge,” said Coggins, in his 11th season as Senator’s head coach. “I like the idea of seeing different teams and players and I’m pleased with our team through the summer and I’m looking forward to it.”

The 16 teams involved signed a two-year contract for the Challenge as the teams will play a home-and-home series.

“Ramsay better bring its A-game and better be ready,” said Hawkins. “We’ll be ready.”

Events

Christmas at Burritt on the Mountain

Events

Madison Community Band to present “Christmas Journey”

Events

Winter Park at The Orion Amphitheater is now open!

Harvest

Still Serving Veterans named ‘Nonprofit of the Year

James Clemens High School

Markowitz, Odom and Wyche earn BBB’s ‘Torch Award for Ethics’

Bob Jones High School

Arslanbekov of Madison merits first place in von Braun Symposium

Harvest

Civic-minded groups help Madison’s blood supply

Events

Fantasy Playhouse’s “A Christmas Carol” to open Dec. 2

Bob Jones High School

Fantasy Playhouse uses grant for technical theatre lab

Events

Rocket City Christmas Light Show in Madison returns Friday

Bob Jones High School

Reflections fine arts gives outlet for students’ creativity

Events

Madison natives, The Beasley Brothers, plan annual Christmas concert at the Princess Theater Dec. 15

Madison

Huntsville International Airport: TSA expects surge in travel volume for Thanksgiving, stresses preparedness

Madison

“Skills for Success” training program debuts to solve bus driver shortage

Madison

James Clemens principal picked to lead Hartselle school district

Events

Huntsville Ballet returns ‘The Nutcracker’ to the VBC stage

Bob Jones High School

‘Pullin’ for Partnership’ raises funds for Partnership prevention

Events

2022 Holiday Event Guide

Madison

AAA expects nearly 55 million Americans will travel during the long holiday weekend

Events

Skating in the Park is back for its 10th season

Madison

Liftoff! NASA’s Artemis I mega rocket launches Orion to the moon

Bob Jones High School

Next MCS workshop to deal with teenage depression

Madison

Flu season strikes early in Madison schools but prevention is key

Bob Jones High School

‘Grand Champion’ among Bob Jones Band’s Coldwater awards

x