Region Roundball Review
June, 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.

June, 2002
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     Important Upcoming Dates:

6/9   All-Stars camp begins
6/12   All-Stars v. Jr. All-Stars at Purdue
6/15   Indiana All-Stars v. Kentucky at Owensboro
6/19   All-Stars v. Jr. All-Stars at Wawasee HS
6/22   Indiana All-Stars v. Kentucky at Conseco

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News thru Saturday, June 15

         


Luers center Megan Dossen, shown here at the IHSAA state finals, is questionable for today's All-Star game against Kentucky after sustaining a slight concussion in the exhibition against the Juniors on Wednesday.  (RRR Photo)

The All-Stars will be shorthanded in the post tonight when they take on their Kentucky counterparts in Owensboro.  Center Carol Duncan (NorthWood) and forward Jessica Scherer (Triton Central) will not be playing, and center Megan Dossen (Ft. Wayne Luers) is questionable for extended minutes.  Duncan became aware of a stress fracture in her right leg after Wednesday's exhibition against the Juniors, and Scherer has an aggravated groin pull.  Dossen, who went down hard in the exhibition game, has a grade one concussion, and is day-to-day after experiencing some dizziness at practice yesterday.  This leaves lone center Brigett Branson (Turkey Run) to fend off Kentucky's 6'5 and 6'2 post players, but she will get some help from 6'0 Jessica Wright (Cathedral), who has been moved to the center position, and 5'11 Candace Dark (Fountain Central) and 5'8 Brianna Howard (Southwestern Hanover), who have been moved to the power forward positions.  Region fans can listen to tonight's game on WGVE (88.7FM) and WHLP (89.9FM) beginning at 4:45 p.m.  Lots of online pre-game coverage of today's game:
   
Injuries deplete Girls Stars' depth - Indianapolis Star
Indiana All-Stars have big plans for Kentucky - Bloomington Herald-Times
Galaxy Quest - Terre Haute Tribune Star
Kentucky has answer for height deficiency - Louisville Courier-Journal
Another challenge awaits Zolman - South Bend Tribune
Dossen's will to win still strong - Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette
Valentin has got game(s) - Bloomington Herald-Times
Very untimely injury keeps star sidelined - Indianapolis Star
Pfeiffer ready to represent Indiana wearing lucky No. 7 - Plain Dealer & Sun
Dark, Branson just want to have fun - Crawfordsville Journal Review
2002 state all-stars - Greencastle Banner Graphic
Cancer patient Brown to coach (Kentucky) All-Stars - Evansville Courier Press


According to the Terre Haute Tribune Star and  WTWO-TV in Terre Haute, former Terre Haute South standout Kristen Weddle will transfer to Indiana State University after a freshman season at Toledo.  Weddle, who tore her ACL during her junior year of high school, tore another ACL early in the season as a Rocket rookie.  Weddle, who averaged 3.1 points and 1.6 rebounds in seven games (including one start) for Toledo before her injury, will have to sit out next season to comply with NCAA transfer rules.  At ISU, Weddle will be reunited with former South teammate Melanie Boeglin, who signed with the Sycamores during the early signing period in November.
   


Southwestern (Hanover) guard Cat Graham will play for Illinois State after her senior season.  (RRR Photo)

After two visits to the campus in Normal, Illinois, Southwestern (Hanover) junior Catherine Graham has committed to the women's program at Illinois State.  Graham was a member of the 2A State Champion Rebels and was named the MVP of the tournament after scoring a team-high 20 points.  The 5'8 guard, who averaged 18.8 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 4.2 steals as a junior, will join Seeger grad Stacy White on the Redbirds roster for coach Jenny Yopp.
    
Huntington College has put together a quality recruiting class from this year's graduation seniors.  The Foresters will welcome guards Holly Harris of Huntington North and Amanda Newman of Turkey Run.  Also forward Tabitha Pratt of Tippecanoe Valley joins already announced forward Janna Knisely of Warsaw in the post.  Also, former Bishop Luers and Bellmont player, Jessah Martin, has transferred from Bellarmine to HC with three years of eligibility remaining.


The USA Developmental Festival North Team, featuring Beech Grove rising senior Katie Gearlds and coached by Perry Meridian's Mike Armstrong, is undefeated after two games.  Gearlds scored 8 points in each win.  The North beat the East in a close game by a score of 92-89, and the South in a comfortable 86-71win.  The North will play the West (0-2) today at 9:00 a.m.  Semi-final games will be played tonight at 5:00 p.m., and the championship game will be played at 8:00 a.m. tomorrow morning.  Complete game recaps, stats and more can be found on the USA Basketball website.  Gearlds is also featured in an Q & A Interview on the site.


Two high school coaching hires have been announced.
   
The Ft. Wayne News Sentinal reports that former Snider assistant Bonnie Bonelli has been named the new head coach at Northrop.  Before her one-year tenure at Snider last seeason, Bonelli was the head coach at Prairie Heights for three years.  Bonelli replaces long-time head coach Phil Ginder, who has retired from both teaching and basketball.
   
According to the Shelbyville News and the Indianapolis Star, Jonathan Titus has been named the new head coach at Southwestern (Shelbyville).  Titus, who has taught at Southwestern since 1992, coached the boys program there for five years, which included a 1999 sectional championship.


Xavier has hired Notre Dame assistant Kevin McGuff as its new head coach.  McGuff, an Ohio native who was an assistant at Miami (Ohio) at one time, has called the appointment his "dream job".  More in the Cincinnati Enquirer.
   
According to the Anderson Herald Bulletin, former Anderson standout Sara Weaver, who graduated in 1997, has been hired as an assistant coach at Evansville University.  Weaver played college ball at the University of Charleston, where she received a degree in physical education.  Weaver began her new position on June 1 and her primary duties will include tape exchange, overseeing the AceCadet kids club, on and off campus recruiting and the day-to-day basketball operations.


Former Highland standout Jen Kackza has been nominated for Kansas Female College Player of the Year.  The Wichita State 6'2 forward, who averaged 16.4 points and 9.5 rebounds during her senior campaign, has received many awards and honors during her four years with the Shockers.



    

News thru Thursday, June 13

      
The Indiana All-Stars defeated the Junior All-Stars 84-77 at Purdue's Mackey Arena last night in a close game that was not decided until the final minutes.  The exhibition game was a warmup for Saturday's first round game with Kentucky in the Indiana-Kentucky All-Stars series.  However, the Indiana All-Stars could be short-handed after some injuries that have plagued the squad.  In last night's game, Ft. Wayne Luers forward/center Megan Dossen left the game in the second half after sustaining a minor concussion.  NorthWood center and the All-Stars' tallest player at 6'3, Carol Duncan, left the game on crutches with a possible left leg stress fracture after an 8-point, 4-rebound performance.  Triton Central forward Jessica Scherer did not play in last night's game after aggravating a groin pull during pre-game warmups, and Cathedral guard Sharika Webb slightly injured her wrist after going down hard early in the game.  Despite a dislocated finger on her non-shooting hand, which she injured in practice earlier this week, Bloomington South guard Cyndi Valentin scored 8 points and pulled down 6 rebounds.  Miss Basketball Shanna Zolman of Wawasee shared top team scoring honors with Cindi Merrill of Noblesville, each with 13 points in a well-balanced offense.  Leading scorer of the game was Junior All-Star South Bend Riley guard Suntana Granderson with 15 points.  More coverage on the game:
   
Purdue-bound trio adds spark to All-Stars' win - Indianapolis Star
Zolman leads All-Stars to 84-77 win over Juniors - South Bend Tribune
Girls struggle to beat junior counterparts - Lafayette Journal & Courier
Zolman leads Girls All-Stars in tuneup win - Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette
Senior girls beat juniors in close game - Gold & Black Illustrated
May leads way... - Bloomington Herald-Times
Former Braves reunited at All-Star exhibition - Terre Haute Tribune Star


According to the Ft. Wayne News-Sentinel, Blackhawk Christian senior Caroline Nelson will play at Division III Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois, next fall.


Whiteland senior Megan Liffick was named the top female athlete by the Johnson County Daily Journal.  Besides a highly successful basketball career, Liffick also excelled in volleyball and track and earned four varsity letters in each sport.


Two Indiana high school products were recently named to womenscollegehoops.com Pre-Season All-American for 2002-03.  Notre Dame rising sophomore forward Jacqueline Batteast (South Bend Washington) was named to the Third Team, while Xavier rising senior guard Amy Waugh (Homestead) was named Honorable Mention.


Evansville University senior Latasha Austin (Perry Meridian) has been named a finalist for UE Female Athlete of the Year, according to the team's website.  Austin was the Missouri Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Year and a four-year letterwinner for the Aces.  Austin is the only player in UE history (male or female) to record over 1,000 points, 400 rebounds, 400 assists and 200 steals during her college career.


After much speculation in college basketball circles around the state, it was confirmed in the Cincinnati Enquirer yesterday that Ball State head coach Tracy Roller (Crown Point) is not a candidate for the Xavier opening.  However, Evansville head coach Tricia Cullop and Notre Dame assistant Kevin McGruff are on the list of finalists.  Xavier is expected to make an announcement regarding the position at 3:00 p.m. this afternoon.



    

News thru Saturday, June 8


   
 The All-Stars series is quickly approaching, and the team will officially begin practice starting tomorrow at DePauw University in Greencastle, unless All-Stars head coach Donna Cheatham (Southwestern Hanover) stayed true to her word and gathered  the group together for practices beginning June 1.  The Indianapolis Star is keeping tabs on the All-Stars activities, and as in the past, has complete coverage:
   
Indiana All-Star camp schedule - check for complete list of activities
Indiana All-Stars girls roster
Indiana All-Stars girls profiles
Indiana All-Stars coaches
Kentucky girls roster
Kentucky girls profiles
  
TV coverage for the All-Star games is pretty decent this year, with television coverage for both series games on WTTV.  Check your local listings for broadcast times, but NWI fans shouldn't bother, as the game will not be televised locally.  For the first time in the history of the series, a Seniors v. Juniors All-Stars exhibition game will also be televised.  The North game at Wawasee High School on June 19 will be telecast live by WHME-TV out of South Bend and WHMB-TV out of Indy beginning at 6:00 p.m.
   
Radio coverage of both the girls and boys All-Stars series will be simulcast locally by WGVE (88.7FM) and WHLP (89.9FM).  Coverage for the June 15th and June 22 games will begin at 4:45 p.m.  Look for Dave Miller and crew to be making the play-by-play.  Also, All-Stars Director Pat Aikman will be featured in a taped interview on the Coaches' Box on WEFM Monday night.
   
Related coverage:
All-Stars face tough test - Terre Haute Tribune Star

All-Stars to make stop in Orange County - Bedford Times-Mail
Hop getting some help as coach of girls' All-Stars (Kentucky) - Louisville Courier-Journal
South athletes preparing for tough summer competition - Terre Haute Tribune Star


Basketball USA has devised a new program to introduce younger players to its institution with the USA Women's Youth Developmental Festival.  The event will feature 48 of the nation's top girls basketball players on four teams in a playoff format.  The inaugural festival will feature two Indiana products -- Katie Gearlds of Beech Grove, who will play on the North Team, and Mike Armstrong of Perry Meridian, who will be head coach of the North Team.  Festival games will be played in Colorado Springs on June 14 through 16.  More:
   
Coaches Named for Inaugural Women's Youth Development Festival
USA Basketball Women's Youth Development Festival Rosters Announced


As we reported on our home page, New Washington senior Sonya Wahl succumbed to the head injuries she sustained in a single-car accident the two days before her graduation.  Our deepest condolences are extended to her family, teammates, coaching staff, friends and community.  She will be sorely missed as a fine role model to those who knew her.  More:

    
Basketball star Wahl dies of injuries sustained in wreck - Jeffersonville Evening News
USI recruit killed in automobile accident - Evansville Courier-Press


The 16U, 17U and 18U AAU state finals got underway last night at Center Grove High School.  If you make it out there, you should be able to catch some great competition anytime during the day and evening.  Check Hoosierland Report for ongoing updates on game results and highlights.


Two Hobart players have finalized their college plans for next fall.
   
Lisa Matie (5'8 G/F) will attend Glen Oaks Community College in Centreville, Michigan, next fall.  Matie led her Brickies team to a strong showing this season, finishing with a 12-9 season against a tough schedule and a third-place finish in the Duneland Conference, while average 10.7 points, 4.7 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game.
    


Kelly Pero poses with Joliet Junior College coaches Tony Giese and Stephanie Sharp after signing her Letter of Intent.  (Photo submitted to RRR)

Hobart and Merrillville transfer player Kelly Pero will play basketball for the Joliet Junior College Lady Wolves in Joliet, Illinois. JJC has a 12,000 student enrollment and is the first community college to offer brand new, on-campus housing. Pero was an All Area and All Tourney Selection her sophomore year and has consistently been a top performer in shooting percentage in the Duneland Athletic Conference. She is known for her tenacious defense and will be a welcome addition at JJC. Kelly was also a 4-year varsity track sprinter and was offered basketball scholarships at Purdue Calumet, South Suburban and Kaskaskia College in Centralia, Illinois. She played basketball in Australia in Summer 2001 with the Indiana Stars and the team brought home a Gold Medal. Kelly is also an accomplished dancer, actress and singer, having been involved in many professional theatrical productions and The Arie Crown Nutcracker for many years. She will study Criminal Justice at Joliet Junior College.
      
South Dearborn senior Jeananne Pippine, has accepted a basketball scholarship to play for the Lady Braves of Black Hawk Community College in Moline, Illinois.  The 5'10 forward averaged 10.6 points and 5.5 rebounds for the Lady Knights, who were the Sectional 28 champs with an 18-5 season record.
    
Senior Renee Townsend of Marion High School, a 5'5 guard, has also signed with
Glen Oaks Community College.


Two Duneland Conference coaching positions are now open.  
   
According to the Michigan City News Dispatch, young and energetic Michigan City coach Monica Claridge has resigned her position to become an assistant coach at Butler University.  Claridge had given the Wolves program a huge boost over the past two years, making a number of MC players enthusiastic about a resurgence of the struggling program.  Claridge will be a bright addition to the women's program at Butler that has been faltering for some time.  More:  Butler Women's Basketball Program Fills Assistant Coaching Positions - Fans Only
   
Merrillville coach Joe Poteet has resigned his position after four years on the job.  After compiling at 35-51 record, no reason was given for Poteet's departure.  However, the job should be filled with a quality candidate, as this program is on the verge of approaching the upper echelons of the DAC with some rising talent.  Merrillville finished 8-14 this past season and second to last in the DAC standings.
   
Long time Whiting fixture Paul Laub has stepped down from his position as head coach after 26 years at the helm for the Oilers.  According to The Times, Laub compiled a 253-249 record during his tenure, which began in 1976.  Laub, a math teacher and department chair, will stay on in his positions of athletic director and girls softball coach.
  
Logansport head coach Tommy Berry has resigned his position after two seasons, according to the Logansport Pharos-Tribune.  Berry, who compiled a 9-33 record during his tenure, cited more time to be with his family as his reason for leaving.
   
According to the Evansville Courier-Press, both Castle and Boonville have hired new head coaches.  Wayne Allen, formerly an assistant at Castle and a head boys coach at Boonville and Muncie South, has been hired to direct a strong Knights roster for next season.  Ashlee Bruggenschmidt, a former player at Boonville and now a teacher at the elementary level, will take the helm for her alma mater Pioneers
.
   
Jessica DuBois, a player on two state championship teams at Kokomo, has been named the new girls head basketball coach at Western Boone, replacing Brian Bowerman, who resigned in March.


We missed these earlier last month.  As always, Ed Robinson of Southern Indiana Basketball Online did one terrific job in covering the Reebok North/South Classic in New Albany.  He has put together an outstanding presentation of photos and video/audio of a good number of players from both North and South that you will truly enjoy.  Those in video clips are Brigett Branson of Turkey Run, Candace Dark of Fountain Central, Dana Collins of Decatur Central, Megan Dossen of Luers, Erin Guy of Twin Lakes, Brianna Howard of Southwestern (Hanover), Kia Hayes of North Central, Cyndi Valentin of Bloomington South, Sharika Webb of Cathedral, Alex Webster of Crown Point, Jessica Wright of Cathedral and sadly, Sonya Wahl of New Washington.  Also, a four+ minute interview with South coach Donna Cheatham, who will be coaching the 2002 Indiana All Stars in June, is also linked there.


The Indianapolis Star's Pat McKee takes a look at the new summer participation rule and how different programs are responding to it.


Tennessee transfer and 1999 Miss Basketball April McDivitt (Connersville), will finish out her college career at the University of California-Santa Barbara.  More:
   
McDivitt transferring to Cal-Santa Barbara - Knoxnews
McDivitt will finish college in California - Indianapolis Star
Point Guard April McDivitt Joins The UCSB Women's Basketball Team - UCSB Gauchos
   
Allison Harris (6'1 F/C) of Martinsville, has transferred from St. Francis to Marian College in Indianapolis after one year with the 


The Hoosiers of Indiana recently made a formal announcement regarding the signings of their 2002 recruiting class.  Two of the six featured recruits include Cyndi Valentin of Bloomington South and Brigett Branson of Turkey Run.


The South Bend Tribune recently featured an article about Andrea Gramm (Bremen), who has overcome some physical obstacles to succeed at the college level.  Gramm plays college basketball at Hope College in Holland, Michigan.


From the college coaching ranks:
   
According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, two Indiana coaches are apparently in the running for an opening in the Atlantic 10 Conference.  Ball State head coach Tracy Roller (Crown Point) and Evansville head coach Tricia Cullop have been named as candidates for the Xavier position, an opening created after head coach Melanie Balcomb was hired for the opening at Vanderbilt after Jim Foster left for the Ohio State job.  (Get all of that?)  All of these comings and goings will or could impact a number of recruits.  Martinsville guard Mandy Geryak will be stepping onto campus at Xavier next fall to play for a coach that did not recruit her, as well as Candace Dark of Fountain Central, who is headed to Ohio State.  Other 2002 Indiana recruits could be impacted if the Indiana coaches, and even some others around the country mentioned, end up at Xavier.  It should be noted, however, that although Roller and Cullop are being considered for the Xavier position, when openings like this occur, many names are tossed about without a great deal of hiring probability.
  
On a further twist of the Vanderbilt job, Tom Collen, who has coached Jackie Campbell (Chesterton) and Elizabeth English (Rushville) at Colorado State for the past three years, was passed over after being hired for the Vanderbilt job when it was discovered he had an error on his resume regarding a master's degree from Miami (Ohio).  Collen lost the Vanderbilt job and was denied a return to Colorado State because of the resume flap.  As reported in the Cincinnati Enquirer this past week, it was discovered that Collen's resume was not in error and that in fact his credentials were legitimate.  All this due to an error in the Miami registrar's office.
  
Former Notre Dame player Sheila McMillen of Rochester has resigned her assistant coaching post with Northwestern University, according to the Daily Northwestern.  Apparently McMillen has decided that coaching is not a career she wishes to continue.


Midwest Sports Publishing, which has published student athlete magazines for a variety of sports for a number of years, will be publishing its first-ever high school basketball magazine this winter. The new publication will be sold on the MSP website and at selected outlets throughout the state of Indiana.



    

News thru Saturday, May 25

 

According to the Louisville Courier-JournalNew Washington senior Sonya Wahl sustained life-threatening head injuries in a car accident early Friday morning.  The  6'1 center, who is planning on attending the University of Southern Indiana on a full basketball scholarship, averaged 26.9 points and 14.3 rebounds per game as a senior.  She was named to the Louisville Courier-Journal First Team All-State and recently played for the South team in the annual Reebok North/South Indiana All-Star Classic.  Our sincere best wishes and prayers for recovery are sent to Sonya, her family, teammates and friends.


According to the Indianapolis Star, Triton Central has lost its top returning player to cross-town rival Shelbyville for next season.  Audra Blackford, a 5'10 junior point guard who averaged 18.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game this past season, is heading to the Golden Bears program due to a "family situation which caused Blackford and her mother to move into Shelbyville."  Blackford will join a solid group at Shelbyville, which includes junior post Katie Douglas and sophomore guard Gretchen Haehl.


A few more college signings:
  
Calumet College has added 5'10 forward Emily Johnsen of Bishop Noll and 5'8 forward Silvia Montes of River Forest to its 2002 recruiting class.
    
New Albany senior Regina Marshall has signed with IUPUI.  The 5'8 guard averaged 16.0 points per game as a senior.
   
West Central 5'11' forward Hope Hickman has signed with Lake Land Community College in Matoon, Illinois, and 5'9" guard/forward teammate Courtney Cervenka has signed with Indiana Wesleyan.
   
Kokomo 5'11senior center/forward Mica Hendrix has signed with Kalamazoo Valley Community College in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
   
Warsaw 5'9 forward Janna Knisely has signed with Huntington College to play next season. 
   
Ft. Wayne Snider standout Megan Mattson will play at Taylor-Ft. Wayne next season.  Her teammate, Jasmine Fullove, has accepted a  scholarship to play volleyball at the University of Tennessee.
   
Terre Haute South guard Kristen Clary will play tennis at Xavier.  Clary was a member of this year's 4A State Champion Braves and was selected to the AP 4A All-Tournament team.


Anderson coach Johnny Wilson was recently terminated from his head coaching position, according to the Anderson Herald Bulletin.  Wilson, who has been with the Indians for the past three years, compiled a 20-44 record during his tenure, including a 4-17 outing this past season.
   
Central Noble has hired Bert McLaughlin as its girls head basketball coach, stepping in for Brett Burrough, who left the program but who will still coach baseball there.


Former Hammond Morton player Angie Drapac is featured in an officiating article in The Times.  You may see Drapac at the upcoming Gus Macker Tournament (June 1-2 at Hammond) in an officiating team with her dad.


According to a recent article note in Knox News, 1999 Miss Basketball April McDivitt (Connersville), who recently left the Tennessee program, has visited both Kansas State and North Carolina State as two transfer possibilities.  According to the article, she is also believed to be considering California Santa Barbara, where she will be working as a camp counselor this summer .


Lake Central and Purdue grad Kelly Komara has been waived by the Indianapolis Fever.  Komara, who recently had surgery for a broken cheekbone, was let go due to the Fever meeting an 11-player roster limit deadline.  According to the Post-Tribune (one-day link), the Fever general manager stated that Komara was not cut due to the injury and that she had a very good camp.  More in the Indianapolis StarAlso, Blackford and IU grad Jill Chapman, was retained on the Detroit Shock roster.  The Shock will will travel to Indianapolis on June 1 for a season-opener with the Fever.


If you haven't visited our College Message Boards page (accessible from the RRR Message Board), you wouldn't know that we've added some additional college board links for your enjoyment.  With the post-season lull of the spring and summer, its a great way to catch up on a lot of the rumors/speculations of various college teams from fans around the country.  A Ball State women's basketball board is the newest addition.  The just-created board doesn't even have a single message on it yet.  With all the Indiana players on that team, you could be the first to wish them good luck for next season!



 

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