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High school roundup: IHSAA ‘exploring alternative plans’ for 2024 wrestling/ boys bball state finals

BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS

Sports Editor, RTC

The IHSAA discussed in its March 25 Executive Committee meeting “exploring and evaluating alternative plans” for the 2024 wrestling and boys basketball state finals due to scheduling conflicts with Gainbridge Fieldhouse.

Gainbridge Fieldhouse will host the NBA All-Star Game on Feb. 18, 2024. The 2024 wrestling season is scheduled to end on Feb. 16-17.

Gainbridge Fieldhouse is also scheduled to host first and second round games of the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament on March 22 and 24 of that year. The boys basketball state finals are scheduled for March 23, 2024.

Basketball

Brooke, Cripe earn statewide honors: Pioneer’s Ashlynn Brooke and Hailey Cripe both earned statewide recognition from the Indiana Coaches of Girls Sports Association.

Brooke was named first-team All-State. She was one of 25 players to earn the honor statewide. Cripe was named third-team All-State and was one of 27 players statewide to earn that designation.

Edmonds named first-team academic all-state: Argos senior forward-post player Lizzy Edmonds was named first-team academic all-state, per the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association. She was one of 42 girls players statewide to earn this honor.

To be eligible for the honor, an IBCA member coach may nominate a player with a grade-point average of 3.5 or better on a 4.0 scale and a class rank in the upper 25 percent of one’s class. The IBCA waived college board scores – SAT or ACT – due to the pandemic.

Playing ability was also considered.

“The IBCA Academic All-State program is one where academic prowess and athletic prowess both are considered in the selections,” the association said in a statement. “Items such as grade-point average and academic class rank are considered along with athletic performance in areas such as points per game, rebounds per game and assists per game.”

Edmonds was the only player of either gender in the RTC area to be named to the first team.

Girls honorable mention academic all-state

Macee Baker (Pioneer), Lizzie Pugh (Culver), Maddi Smith (Caston), Lexy Thomas (Rochester), Abby Williamson (Caston), Brianna Yarber (Caston)

Boys honorable mention academic all-state

Jake Paschen (Caston), Michael Richard (Argos), Sam Smith (Caston), Joey Spin (Caston), Kade Zeider (Caston)

Homestead’s Patterson named Miss Basketball: Homestead 6-3 forward Ayanna Patterson was named IndyStar Miss Basketball on March 11. The award goes to the top girls basketball senior in the state.

Patterson averaged 25.8 points, 11.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2 blocks per game for Homestead. She finished her career with 1,912 points, 1,005 rebounds, 149 assists and 187 blocked shots in 105 career prep games.

Patterson is the first Homestead player to win the award since Karissa McLaughlin won it in 2017. Homestead’s Caleb Swanigan won the Mr. Basketball award in 2015.

Patterson will wear jersey No. 1 when the Indiana All-Stars play the Kentucky All-Stars on June 10-11. The June 10 game will be played at the Owensboro SportsCenter in Ownesboro, Ky., and the June 11 game will be played at Southport Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

IBCA player of week honorees: The following RTC area basketball players were nominated for the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association/Franciscan Health player of the week award:

Nov. 1-6 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

Nov. 8-13 – Hailey Cripe (Pioneer)

Nov. 15-20 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

Nov. 22-27 – Kaydence Mellott (Tippecanoe Valley)

Nov. 29-Dec. 4 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

Dec. 6-11 – Kaydence Mellott (Tippecanoe Valley)

Dec. 20-Jan. 1 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

Jan. 3-8 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

Jan. 10-15 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

Jan. 31-Feb. 5 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

Feb. 7-12 – Ashlynn Brooke (Pioneer)

RHS’ Leasure, McGlothin, Valley’s Kiser, Cumberland voted first-team all-TRC: Rochester’s Paul Leasure and Tarick McGlothin and Valley’s Tayde Kiser and Nolan Cumberland were among those voted first-team all-Three Rivers Conference in boys basketball in voting done by the conference’s coaches and released to the media.

First team

Matt Ross (Peru), Hayden Maiben (Maconaquah), Gavin Betten (Manchester), Trevor Daughtry (Wabash), Cole Winer (Southwood), Brayden Betzner (Maconaquah), Tayde Kiser (Tippecanoe Valley), Matt Roettger (Peru), Nolan Cumberland (Tippecanoe Valley), Izaak Wright (Wabash), Kyler Krull (Whitko), Bauer Maple (Maconaquah), Paul Leasure (Rochester), Braden Burns (North Miami), Tarick McGlothin (Rochester)

Honorable mention

Josiah Ball (Maconaquah), William Rickerd (Manchester), Eli Kroh (Northfield), Collin Ziebarth (Whitko), Landen Hunt (North Miami), Kolton Wilson (Wabash), Tanner Reinartz (Rochester), Braxten Robbins (Peru), Braden Shepherd (Tippecanoe Valley), Nathan Lehner (Southwood)

Argos’ Morris, Valley’s Cumberland receive IBCA Underclass recognition: Argos junior forward J.J. Morris and Valley junior forward Nolan Cumberland were both named to the IBCA/Franciscan Health Underclass Honorable Mention team.

They were two of 90 players statewide to receive the honor.

Volleyball

Sixteen RTC area volleyball players were named to the Indiana High School Volleyball Academic All-State team. They were among a record 868 players who made the statewide list.

IHSVCA Academic All-State

Abby Williamson (Caston), Maddi Smith (Caston), Sydney Denham (Culver), Carlie Morris (Pioneer), Hailey Cripe (Pioneer), Kennedy Corn (Pioneer), Mackenzie Robinson (Pioneer), Lexy Thomas (Rochester), Emily Hughes (Rochester), Kylie Houston (Rochester), Kenzie Bradley (Rochester), Brayden Baney (Tippecanoe Valley), Macy Kirchenstien (Tippecanoe Valley), Mallory Durkes (Tippecanoe Valley), Alyssa Villanueva (Winamac), Kaya Campbell (Winamac)

IHSAA Ray Crowe Excellence in Leadership Award

The IHSAA announced the formation of the IHSAA Ray Crowe Excellence in Leadership Award on March 24.

“The award will recognize individuals who carry on the legacy of Ray Crowe, exemplifying the highest standards of sportsmanship, ethical conduct, and moral character,” the IHSAA said in a press release. “Candidates will be considered on the merits of their achievements as a high school leader (coach, athletic administrator, etc.), civic contributions and community impact, including significant and/or long-term contributions to the interscholastic athletic community. This award will acknowledge the accomplishments and meaningful contributions of individuals who are worthy of statewide recognition as examples for others to emulate.”

The first award was presented to Crowe’s family at the boys basketball state finals at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on March 26.

Crowe coached Indianapolis Attucks to back-to-back boys basketball state titles in 1955-56. They were the first all-Black school to win an open state championship in the country, and Crowe was the first Black coach to win a state championship.

Crowe was named a Sagamore of the Wabash in 1991.

He died in 2003 at the age of 88.

Crowe will also be inducted posthumously into the National High School Hall of Fame in San Antonio on July 1 as part of the Summer Meeting of the National Federation of State High School Associations.

He will be the first Indiana high school basketball coach to be inducted.


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