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Great Alaska Shootout will end after 2017


ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) The University of Alaska Anchorage says the 40th Great Alaska Shootout will be the last edition of the long-running college basketball tournament.

Chancellor Sam Gingerich said Thursday that the university can no longer sustain funding for the annual Thanksgiving week tournament.

The shootout began in 1978 and is the longest-running regular-season college basketball tournament.

The event brought the highest level of basketball competition to Alaska, with appearances in the men's bracket by Duke, Kansas, North Carolina, UCLA and other perennial national contenders.

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In recent years, as early season tournaments multiplied, top teams chose warmer venues.

The 2017 GCI Great Alaska Shootout begins Nov. 21 with the four-team women's tournament. The field includes Binghamton, Tulsa, Maryland Eastern Shore and host Alaska-Anchorage.

The men's tournament begins Nov. 22 with Cal Poly, Central Michigan, College of Charleston, CSU Bakersfield, Idaho, Sam Houston State, Santa Clara and host Alaska-Anchorage.