Region Roundball Review
November, 2002
News & Updates
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Welcome to the news area of the Region Roundball Review. This page will be updated as information becomes available. If you have any news about girls basketball in the Region or around the State, please e-mail us with your information and we will include it here. Please note that not all links shown here will stay active indefinitely. Many links are to daily on-line publications that change or remove links from their sites on a daily basis. For your convenience, you can use the calendar at the right to access news for a particular day.

November, 2002
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     Important Upcoming Dates:

11/9   IHSAA Volleyball State Finals
11/11   First day of IHSAA authorized contests
11/11-14   NCAA Dead Period
11/13-20   NCAA Early Signing Period

Now you don't have to use as many brain cells to remember how to get here...

News thru Thursday, November 21


The biggest news today has to the be the upset of 4A No. 3 and last year's 4A runner-up South Bend Riley by upstart East Chicago Central.  After trailing 12 points at the end of the first quarter and 10 points at the half, the young Cardinals kicked it into gear in response to Coach Ron Edmonds change in defensive strategy and a plea to his team at half time to crash the boards.  EC held senior all-staters Suntana Granderson (21 ppg) and Crystal Norman (17 ppg) to a combined 16 points, while soph center Kendra Reynolds went scoreless.  The Cardinals were led by senior 5'9 F Ebonie Campbell (11),  6'1 C soph Jernita Moore (10) and frosh duo 5'9 G/F Delaquese Jernigan (11) and 5'8 G/F Kelly Watts (9).  For the second year in a row, the Cardinals also opened the season with a win over Valparaiso last week.  Complete coverage in The Times and Post-Tribune (one-day link).

Yesterday was the last day of the early signing period, and the news of several more commitments emerged in the process.
Natalie Collins (5'11 G.F) of Franklin Central has signed with DI Morehead State of the Ohio Valley Conference.  Collins, who was named third-team all-state by Hoosier Basketball Magazine, averaged 12.0 points and 7.0 rebounds per game as a junior for the 9-13 Flashes.  She chose MSU over Eastern Illinois and will be the only Hoosier on the roster for the Kentucky school next season.
Indiana Junior All-Star Amanda Norris of Shenandoah has signed with Indianapolis University.  The 5'10 guard/forward, who was a Hoosier Basketball Magazine First Team All-State selection, averaged 20 points per game last season for a Raiders team that has made two consecutive state finals appearances, and is on track to make a third with a No. 2 ranking in 2A.  According to the Anderson Herald-Bulletin, Norris will most likely play at the power forward position in college.
Long time Ben Davis point guard Adrienne Jones has also signed with Indianapolis University.  The 5'5 sparkplug and defensive ace averaged 8.0 points per game last season.  Jones will be reunited next season with former teammate and Indy U junior Sara Strahm from the Ben Davis 2000 state championship team.
   Kokomo guard duo Ashley Hayes and Ashley Johnson have both signed with Division I programs.  Hayes, a 5'9 guard who averaged 10.6 rebounds and 5.0 assists last season after transferring from Western, has signed with Murray State of the Ohio Valley Conference.  Hayes is expected to play multiple positions for the Racers, from small forward to point guard.  Hayes will join Hoosiers Brittany Parks (Decatur Central) and Sheree Lauer (Huntington North) on the MS roster next season.  Johnson, a quick and heady 5'7 guard, has signed with Indiana-Purdue Ft. Wayne.  Johnson will join a very young Mastadon team next season, which currently has eight freshmen on the roster.
Franklin Central center Sharri Rhode has signed with Division I Maryland-Baltimore County of the Northeast Conference.  The 5'11 forward led the Flashes in scoring last season with 15.0 points per game.  Rhode will join a team next season that will have only one senior on the roster.

USA Today has named both of Indiana's top candidates for Miss Basketball in its annual Preseason USA Today Super 25Katie Gearlds (Beech Grove) and Reicina Russell (Lawrence North) were included in a group of coveted college recruits from around the country.  Also, South Bend Riley was listed at No 21 on the USA Today Super 25 list of teams, while Kokomo appeared at No. 9 in the USA Today Regional Rankings

Early this week the Post-Tribune finished off its series of girls basketball pre-season coverage.  In the Northwestern Conference, the P-T picked Bernettra Grayer of Gary West Side as the preseason conference MVP and also picked the Cougars to finish first in the league, followed by Horace Mann, Lew Wallace, Wirt and Roosevelt.  For the independents, Kankakee Valley center Amanda DeVries was selected as the preseason MVP, while North Judson was picked to finish at the top in overall season record, followed by North Newton, East Chicago Central, Lake Central, Kankakee Valley, Knox and Rensselaer.
The Post-Tribune also recently named its pre-season all-area teams as follows:

Post-Tribune Pre-Season 1st Team  Post-Tribune Pre-Season 2nd Team
Kim Haviar, 5'8 G Lake Central
Shanee Butler, 5'5 G Horace Mann
Karima Davies, 6'2 C Gary West Side
Julie DeMuth, 6'0 F Highland
Amanda DeVries, 6'6 C Kankakee Valley
Lyndee Arnold, 5'11 F Highland
Kiki Bytnar 5'7 F Calumet
Marshay Jolly, 5'10 G Merrillville
Linsey Smith, 5'10 G/F Lake Central
Genae Glasper, 6'1 F/C Hammond Gavit

If you haven't checked it out lately, RRR friend and site contributor Bob Strempka is beginning his photo coverage of girls basketball in the Region with some great action shots from the first week of games.  You can view Bob's ongoing sports portfolio online at

The Evansville Courier & Press has an outstanding basketball preview book online.  Lots of coverage on all the teams in the area, both girls and boys.  Also includes coverage of teams in Kentucky and Illinois.  On the cover representing Indiana?  Senior Missy Glaser of Evansville Mater Dei and junior Leslie Ricker of North Posey.

Members of the 2002 state runner-up Hebron Hawks are presented at a special ceremony at Hebron's first home game over the weekend.  (Photo by

The Hebron state runner-up team was honored at the Hawks first home game over the weekend.  The team's state banner was raised and the No. 21 jersey of Lauren Bechtold was retired.

The college season gets underway all around the country this weekend, which has spawned some online coverage of teams and players from Indiana.
Eckart glad she followed her former coach to IU (Lisa Eckart, Center Grove) - Herald Times
DeMuth at center of IU rebuilding - The Times
IU's Bennett counting on young players to make an impact - Times-Mail
Curry sets Purdue's sights on national title - The Times

The Class of 2002 continued to make its impact at the college level in exhibition games last week.  Frosh Cyndi Merrill (Noblesville) came off the bench to spark Miami (Ohio) to a 93-69 victory of OGBM Legends.  The 5'8 guard/forward scored 12 points and dished 5 assists  in the win.  Also, Megan Liffick (Whiteland) made a splash in her first college event, scoring 17 points in 30 minutes as a starting forward for the Aces.  Evansville frosh Jessica Stewart (Rockville) also started for the Aces, scoring 5 points and pulling down 5 rebounds in 28 minutes in a win over OGBM Legends.  Shanna Zolman (Wawasee) knocked down 15 points in an exhibition win over Premier Players last weekend, and Jamie Gutowski (Andrean), who racked up about 20 points in a scrimmage with Butler, will likely get the start at wing for Valparaiso when they play Miami (Ohio) this weekend.


News thru Friday, November 15


The early signing period is upon us, and as expected, the coverage about seniors from around the state is hitting the cyber waves.
According to The Times, Gary West Side senior post Bernettra Grayer has signed with the Southern Indiana Salukis this week.  The 6'3 center/forward also considered offers from Austin Peay, Cleveland State, Wright State, Northern Illinois, Tennessee State, Youngstown State, and IUPUI.  Grayer was a member of the Cougars team that lost to eventual 4A state runner-up South Bend Riley on a last second shot in the Regional Finals.
Marion senior Jenny Wisser will sign with Division II Quincy University of the Great Lakes Valley Conference this week.  The 5'10 guard/forward averaged 14 points per game as a junior shooting guard, but will be playing her fourth year as a starter at the point guard position for a young Giants team and coach/dad Darrell Wisser this season.  Wisser, who was a member of the Indiana Warriors AAU team that finished fourth in the 17U AAU state tournament, is looking forward to playing against sister Amy Wisser in college when Quincy faces Indianapolis University, also a member of the GLVC.
Princeton senior Jessica Williams has announced to the Evansville Courier-Press that she will sign with the University of Southern Indiana this week.  The 5'10 guard/forward averaged 12.5 points, 5.9 rebounds and 4.0 assists last season.
Other official signing news is online for Indiana players:
Women's basketball inks four recruits - Ball State
Rebelsí Graham to play basketball at Div. I Illinois State - Madison Courier
 Women's Basketball Signs Two - Purdue
Couture Signs Highly-Touted Recruits - Butler

Shenandoah senior part of Cardinal recruiting class - Muncie Star Press
According to a short blurb in the Indianapolis Star, Lawrence North star Reicina Russell has narrowed her choices to Michigan State, Penn State, Illinois, Iowa and UNLV.  Also, she indicates that she may sign in the early signing period.  If she does, she'll have to make up her mind by the 20th, the last day to sign in November.
According to the Post-Tribune (sorry, expired link), Calumet center Chandra Timberlake is being recruited by Miami (Ohio) and Murray State.  Timberlake, a 6'2 senior, is expected to help her team vie for the LAC title this season.

The preseason ICGSA Poll is out, and several NWI teams are in the mix.  Gary West and Valparaiso are Nos. 5 and 10 in 4A, Highland is No. 5 in 3A, North Judson is No. 7 in 2A, and Oregon-Davis and Washington Township are Nos. 4 and 7, respectively, in 1A.  Most likely Valpo will fall out of favor with the voters after a season-opening loss to East Chicago on Tuesday this week.

The IHSAA has released the sectional groupings and host sites for the 2002-03 IHSAA Tournament in February.  Also, the new school classification enrollment figures are out for 2003-2007.  Two teams in NWI seem to be on the bubble in terms of either moving up or down in class.  Possible moves?  Gary Wallace from 4A to 3A ands Highland from 3A to 4A.  Other interesting possibilities for other schools around the state include New Castle and Connersville from 4A to 3A, Shelbyville from 3A to 4A, Alexandria and Northwestern from 3A to 2A, Mater Dei from 2A to 3A, and Triton from 2A back down to 1A.

AT& T will again be covering high school girls basketball this season.  A change in management at the station has cut back the number of games covered, but the offerings are still a great chance for NWI girls basketball fans to see some of the best games in the Region this season.  The season kicks off with coverage of the Region Roundball Rumble, which will pit 3A power Highland against 4A state runner up South Bend Riley at the Hammond Civic Center on December 7.
AT&T Game of the Week Schedule
2002-2003 Girls High School Basketball

Sat.  Dec. 7 SB RILEY vs. HIGHLAND (at Civic Center)
Sat. Jan. 25 PCC Tournament Championship
Sat. Feb. 15 Sectional Championship
Sat.  Feb. 22 Regional Championship
Sat. March 1 Semi-State Championship
Sat. March 8  State Championship (if local teams are playing)

Announcers: Jaime Perko & Mark Smith

Games will air at 10:35pm on night of game on channel 3 only.
Games will air at 7pm on the entire AT&T Broadband Network on Mon & Wed

Lake Area Channel 3
Hammond Area Channel 15
Portage Area Channel 26
Valparaiso Area Channel 43

Familiar NWI sports media personalities Jaime Perko and Mark Smith will begin previewing girls basketball coverage on the Region Sports X-tra starting this week on the AT&T Broadband Network.  The broadcast schedule for the show throughout the season is as follows:
Lake Area Channel 3:  Thursdays at 9pm & 10:35pm. Fridays at 4pm
Hammond Area Channel 15:  Thursdays at 9pm
Portage Area Channel 26:  Thursdays at 9pm, Saturdays at 9am
Valparaiso Area Channel 43:  Thursdays 9pm & 11:05pm

The Post-Tribune has started its girls basketball coverage with previews of the Duneland, Porter County and Lake Athletic (Blue and Black Divisions) Conferences.  Unfortunately, the P-T's coverage expires after just one day, which is unfortunate, because several players received coverage with very nice profile pieces.  Highlighted with each conference preview were soph Cassie Pruzin of Crown Point, senior Christi Gladdis of Washington Township, senior Lyndee Arnold of Highland and senior Chandra Timberlake of Calumet.  However, we can tell you who they picked as preseason conference MVPs and how they predict teams will finish in the conference.

Duneland Porter County Lake Athletic - Black Lake Athletic - Blue
Preseason MVP
Cassie Pruzin - Crown Point

Predicted Finish
1. Chesterton
2. Valparaiso
3. Merrillville
4. Crown Point
5. Hobart
6. Portage
7. LaPorte
8. Michigan City

Preseason MVP
Alyse Bruszewski - Wheeler 

Predicted Finish
1. Washington Twp.
2. Hanover Central
3. Wheeler
4. Boone Grove
5. Hebron
6. Kouts
7. Morgan Twp.
8. LaCrosse

Preseason MVP
Julie DeMuth - Highland

Predicted Finish
1. Highland
2. Griffith
3. Andrean
4. Lowell
5. Munster
6. Gavit

Preseason MVP
Chandra Timberlake - Calumet

Predicted Finish
1. Calumet
2. Hammond
3. Bishop Noll
4. Whiting
5. Morton
6. Lake Station
7. Clark

The Times has some interesting quick hits on the upcoming season before it's official preseason coverage, which is scheduled to appear in the November 22 edition.  The article postulates on who will be the new and returning stars of the Region this season.  Likely candidates include Julie DeMuth of Highland, Amanda DeVries of Kankakee Valley, Kiki Bytnar of Calumet, Genae Glasper of Hammond Gavit and Marshay Jolly of MerrillvilleThe Times Porter County edition also has a number of preseason capsules and other information about Porter County girls basketball in anticipation of the first complete week of games.

The family of Sonya Wahl, standout player from New Washington who was tragically killed in a car accident last spring, will be making two scholarship awards in the name of Sonya beginning next spring.  A $1,000 scholarship to a New Washington senior and a $500 scholarship to the winner of Clark County Player of the Year award by the Evening News in Jeffersonville will be funded annually by the family.  According to the Evening News, the POY award will now be named the Sonya Wahl Memorial Clark County Player of the Year.

The Ft. Wayne News Sentinel has named its annual Fantastic Five for the 2002-03 preseason.  Abby Noel of Carroll (Allen), Kelsey Corbin of Northrop, Mallory Faylor of Columbia City, Alena Noel of Ft. Wayne South, and Leah Enterline of Heritage are profiled in receiving the much-heralded Ft. Wayne honor.

A number of player profiles are online, with some good reading:
According to the Louisville Courier-Journal, Madison guard Brittany Myers will be a true offensive machine for the Cubs this season.  Averaging 22.0 points per game as a sophomore, the junior can only improve on her numbers this season.  So far the impressive 5'9 shooting guard has received over 80 letters from colleges across the country.
Junior Kristi Pitcher of Franklin talks about being the younger sister of basketball legend brothers in the Indianapolis Star.  The 5'9 forward is the top returning scorer for the Grizzly Cubs this season at 4.5 ppg.
Whiteland senior Jonica McPeak is featured in the Indianapolis Star.  The 5'9 senior forward discusses missing most of her junior season due to a stress fracture.  She is 100 percent this season and is hoping to be a major piece of the Whiteland puzzle this season.
Roncalli senior post Kara Warner talks about her motivation for the upcoming season in the Indianapolis Star.  The 6'2 power forward averaged 10.0 points and 5.0 rebounds as a junior.
The Marion Chronicle-Tribune examines the point guard position and players in the Marion area who will apply their PG style to their teams this season.  Included are September Harness of Mississinewa, Jenny Wisser of Marion and Libby Hiple of Oak Hill.
Montgomery player Brittany Lee is profiled in the Lafayette Journal & Courier.

4A No. 10 ranked Valparaiso took it on the chin early this week in a 5-point loss to East Chicago, a program on the rise.  While many will point fingers at the season opening loss, we suspect that the Valpo faithful will point right back, with a reminder that last year's sectional championship team, that took Gary West Side to the limit at regionals, also lost to EC in the first game of last season.  As most know, it's now how you start the season, but how you finish...  According to today's Post-Tribune, Lake Central senior post players and volleyball standouts Katie Chick and Megan Bowman will forego the girls basketball season.  A huge loss for the Indians, who were probably favored as the deepest and most complete team in the Region this season...  As noted above, The Times girls basketball preview will be published on November 22, instead of the November 15 date reported earlier to the RRR by the publication...  Four of NWI's DI signees from last season are playing in the Mid-Continent conference.  Freshmen Lauren Bechtold (Hebron) and Jamie Gutowski (Andrean) have already shown they will make an immediate impact at Valparaiso, and it looks like two others will as well.  In a preseason wrap up of the MCC, The Times reveals that Michelle Jones (Gary West Side) at Chicago State and Brooke McAfee (Valparaiso) at IUPUI may both be slated for starting positions during the season with their respective teams.  Jones recently scored 17 points in an exhibition game for CSU...  Georgetown Hoya frosh Leslie Tyburski (Hammond Gavit) is now profiled on the Georgetown website, and Lewis University frosh Kim Sliwa (Boone Grove) is profiled on the LU website..

Valparaiso University's lone senior, Jeanette Gray (Valparaiso) was recently profiled in a very nice article in The Times.  Gray looks back on her three years at Valparaiso and her expectations for a fourth season and beyond.

 Ball State will be busy this weekend with a first-ever preseason WNIT appearance by the Cardinals.  They will travel to Kansas State to play in what is expected to be a packed house.  More at the BSU women's website and Muncie Star Press.


News thru Friday, November 8


Alright everyone.  T-minus THREE days and counting until the first games of the season.  As noted below, the first games will take place in the southern part of the state, while in the Region, of note will be the Tuesday opener with Valparaiso at East Chicago, two quality teams trying to make their marks early to get a leg up in NWI.  Also hitting the court on Tuesday locally will be Griffith at Hobart (future LAC opponents), Boone Grove at River Forest, and Hammond Noll at Gary Roosevelt.  We hope to have game previews for the weekend up later next week.

The first teams to hit the court will be in Southern Indiana, when Providence, Austin, Henryville, South Central, Clarksville, Charlestown, Madison Shawe and Trinity Lutheran vie for the Southern Indiana Tip-Off Classic crown beginning on Monday.  Games will be played at Providence and Clarksville with game times during the week 6 and 8 p.m,.and on Saturday at
10, 12, 2:30 and 4.  If you're in the area, here's the schedule:

At Providence:
Pool A
South Central

Nov. 11
(1) South Central vs. Austin
(2) Providence vs. Henryville

Nov. 12
(3) Henryville vs. South Central
(4) Austin vs. Providence

Nov. 14
(5) Henryville vs. Austin
(6) Providence vs. South Central

Nov. 16
(13) Providence No. 3 vs. Clarksville No. 4
(14) Providence No. 1 vs. Clarksville No. 2
(17) Loser No. 13 vs. Loser No. 15
(18) Winner No. 13 vs. Winner No. 15

At Clarksville
Pool B
Madison Shawe
Trinity Lutheran

Nov. 11
(7) Charlestown vs. Madison Shawe
(8) Clarksville vs. Trinity Lutheran

Nov. 12
(9) Madison Shawe vs. Clarksville
(10) Trinity Lutheran vs. Charlestown

Nov. 14
(11) Clarksville vs. Charlestown
(12) Madison Shawe vs. Trinity Lutheran

Nov. 16
(15) Clarksville No. 3 vs. Providence No. 4
(16) Clarksville No. 1 vs. Providence No. 2
(19) Loser No. 14 vs. Loser No. 16
(20) Winner No. 14 vs. Winner No. 15

The Millers of Noblesville received good news this past week when Cathedral transfer Rachel Brockman had her eligibility reinstated by the IHSAA after an appeal.  Complete information in the Indianapolis Star.

A number of season previews have been appearing with regularity in the Indianapolis Star and Bloomington Herald-Times this past week.  We have been linking them on our Scores page under the Season/Games Previews section.  Shelbyville, Indian Creek, Bloomington South, Bloomington North, Morristown, Triton Central, Eastern (Hancock), Bloomfield, Southwestern (Shelbyville), Waldron, Edinburgh and Indianapolis Lutheran have already been previewed.  We will continue to link any and all season previews on our Scores page as they become available.  If you are aware of an online article that we've missed, please pass it along!

Don't forget to share game results with everyone who visits the RRR during the season on our Report Scores page.  Please review the procedure for reporting scores before posting there.

The Highland at Merrillville game originally scheduled for November 15, has been rescheduled for November 29, due to the state volleyball finals appearance by the Trojans this weekend... According to The Times, Lake Central senior point guard Brandi Shields has committed to the Boston College women's softball program...  The Post-Tribune will begin its girls basketball coverage on Monday with a preview of the DAC, highlighting  Crown Point soph Cassie Pruzin.  The P-T will then preview a conference on subsequent days through Saturday.  The Times girls basketball preview will be out Friday, November 15...  Colorado State starter Jackie Campbell of Chesterton will be seeing a delayed or limited role to begin the college season.  The 5'10 former DAC MVP is recovering from a slow-healing broken ankle.... Miami (Ohio) forward Kim Smith (Gary West Side) will also be entering the start of the season on a limited basis.  According to the Miami women's website, Smith is nursing a knee injury as well as getting her strength back after a bout with mononucleosis.

The Valparaiso University women's exhibition game was a showcase for the Crusaders from the Region.  Jeanette Gray (Valparaiso) led her team in a close game against Reebok All Stars with 26 points and 14 rebounds.  Gray was recently named to the Mid-Continent Conference Preseason First Team.  Region rookies Jamie Gutowski (Andrean) and Lauren Bechtold (Hebron) also had a good showing in their college debut, both scoring 14 points in the game.  Sophomore Katie Boone (Center Grove), last season's MCC Newcomer of the Year and a Preseason Second Team honoree, did not play in the game due to a lingering injury that was tended to in successful out-patient surgery this week.  She is expected back in the lineup within the next 4-6 weeks.  More coverage in The Times.

Xavier senior Amy Waugh (Homestead), who was passed over by the Indiana All Star selection process in 1999, received some big time justification when she was recently named one of the top five point guards in the nation by ESPN.  Waugh averaged 16.5 points and 6.3 assists last season.  More college coverage on the ESPN Women's Basketball Season Preview.

According to the Western Kentucky website, former Greensburg standout Sara Riedeman has left the women's basketball program there.  Riedeman was a 2001 Indiana All Star.   

Former Highland standout Jenny DeMuth and her Indiana Hoosiers team are profiled on the Indiana University women's website.  DeMuth is expected to carry a large load of the scoring this season for the defending Big Ten Tournament Champion, which lost four starters.  Of note:  Freshman Brigett Branson (Turkey Run) is recovering from a broken hand injured during individual workouts.

The Purdue women's basketball website has been providing a series of previews to the season by position.  Lots of reading material there on a team stocked with Indiana talent, including Mary Jo Noon (Jeffersonville),  Carol Duncan (NorthWood), Missy Taylor (Connersville), Sharika Webb (Cathedral), Brianna Howard (Southwestern Hanover) and Ashley Mays (Warren Central).

Kentucky freshman guard Jenny Pfeiffer (Jennings County) gives her comments about the team at the Wildcats' media day.  Pfeiffer, according to coach Bernadette Maddox, "has been a nice surprise for us.  We don't drop off at all when we put her in the game. We're excited about the shooting touch that she gives us."

Two Franklin College Grizzly Cubs were recently featured in the news.  According to the Johnson County Journal, sophomore Jenny Cooper (Connersville) is still recovering from a nasty wrist break from last season that recently required surgery.  The Grizzlies starting point guard is expecting to be back in action sometime later this month.  In the meantime, freshmen wings Lindsey Roberson (Roncalli) and Heather Caudill (McCutcheon) are filling in at the point.  Senior Tiffany Ellis (Eastern Hancock) was recently featured in the Indianapolis Star.  The busy forward managed to land a small acting part in a soap opera that is filming on campus last week.


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