Last week, the girls’ IHSAA basketball state tournament got underway, with more than 400 teams participating in the Sectional round of tournament play. There were some really nice performances by the ladies, but sprinkled in were some standout showings by the gentlemen as well.
Central Noble Sophomore Connor Essegian, Western Boone Senior Cortez Stoudemire, Scottsburg Senior Nicholas Sebastiao, South Bend Washington Sophomore Mila Reynolds, Franklin Central Senior Rachel Loobie, and Greenwood Christian Junior Isabella Reed were selected as recipients for the week of Feb. 3-Feb. 8 in the recognition program coordinated by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association.
Essegian claims the boys’ award for District-1, and Reynolds claims the girls’ award for District-1. Stoudemire is the boys’ recipient for District-2, while Loobie is the girls’ recipient for District-2. And Sebastiao and Reed were selected for District-3 honors in boys’ and girls’, respectively.
Central Noble Sophomore Connor Essegian continued a young, but already strong career last week, with an incredible performance Monday night against Bethany Christian. The 6-3 guard poured in 40 points on a sizzling 14-18 shooting, which included going an incredible 10-13 from behind the arc. The ten made 3-pointers is a single-game record at Central Noble. In the easy victory, Essegian also grabbed seven rebounds and collected a pair of steals.
South Bend Washington Sophomore Mila Reynolds had a bit longer of a week. She helped her team to victories Tuesday and Friday night, before they fell in the Sectional championship on Saturday. Tuesday, in a 58-41 win against New Prairie, Reynolds scored 32 points, grabbed 13 rebounds, handed out four assists, and even blocked a shot for good measure.
Friday night, the 6-2 forward continued her strong play, with 22 points, five rebounds, and a pair of blocked shots in a comfortable 47-31 victory over Jimtown. Saturday was a bit tougher on the Panthers, as they fell 53-45 at the hands of Mishawaka Marian. Still, though, Reynolds managed a double-double with 18 points and 13 rebounds.
Thorntown, Indiana, was the site of another offensive explosion Saturday, as Western Boone Senior Cortez Stoudemire lit up the scoreboard in a 71-54 win over Clinton Central. The 5-11 guard was an efficient 15-21 from the field, 3-8 from 3-point range, and 6-8 from the free throw line, scoring a career-high of 39 points. In the win, Stoudemire also collected five rebounds, four of which were at the offensive end of the floor.
Franklin Central Senior Rachel Loobie has helped the Flashes with a remarkable turnaround this season. After posting a 2-20 record in 2018-2019, the Flashes are now Sectional Champions in 2020, following wins over Franklin Community (72-67 in OT), Greenwood Community (54-45), and Center Grove (36-32). Tuesday against Franklin Community, Loobie scored 29 points, grabbed 14 rebounds, dished out six assists, picked up three steals, and blocked a shot in the nail-biting, overtime thriller.
Friday night in the Sectional Semi-Final, the 6-0 forward posted another double-double, with 18 points and 16 rebounds, to go along with three assists and two steals. Loobie, a Central Michigan University signee, returned the next night to post her third triple-double of the week, scoring 21 of her team’s 36 points, grabbing 14 rebounds, and collecting two steals in the trophy clinching contest.
Scottsburg Senior Nicholas Sebastiao posted a pair of double-doubles of his own last week, as the Warriors managed to pick up a pair of big wins. Sebastiao got his week started Thursday evening, with a 64-42 win at Switzerland County. In that contest, he racked up 30 points, 14 rebounds, three assists, and blocked a pair of shots.
Saturday, the 6-4 wing matched his 30-point Friday effort with another 30 points, in a 64-53 victory at West Washington. His 12 rebounds gave him a second double-double in three days, plus he managed to collect four steals in the effort.
Greenwood Christian Junior Isabella Reed has her Cougars right where they want to be, having won their second consecutive Sectional title, with a chance at their first Regional title this Saturday. Wednesday evening, Reed played just limited minutes due to a lopsided outcome, as Greenwood Christian took care of Providence Cristo Rey. The Junior forward scored 18 points, grabbed 11 rebounds, and assisted on seven additional shots in the shortened action.
Friday evening, Reed had her best statistical game of the week against a Tindley team that has given them trouble in the past, though the Cougars won this matchup 82-52. The 5-9 Junior posted a 20-20 game with 29 points and 20 rebounds, plus she added five assists in the win. The next night, in the Sectional championship, Greenwood Christian knocked off Indianapolis Lutheran 82-44 for the title. Reed was again stellar, with 26 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists, and a pair of steals.
This is the 12th season for the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association Player of the Week program, and the eighth season it is presented by Subway Restaurants of Indiana, a banner sponsor of the IBCA. Subway, in its eighth season as an IBCA sponsor, encourages athletes to “train hard and eat fresh”.
Player of the Week winners are chosen each week from each of the IHSAA’s three districts. Girls winners will be chosen through the Monday following the IHSAA Girls State Finals. Boys winners will be chosen through the Monday following the IHSAA Boys State Finals.
Other Top Nominees for Week-14 (2019-20)
District-1 Boys: Nick Anderson, Lake Central; Caedmon Bontrager, Lakewood Park Christian; Johnell Davis, Gary 21st Century; Gabe Gillespie, Andrean; Janye Griffin, South Bend Washington; Ben Lins, Covenant Christian (DeMotte); Christopher Mantis, Lowell; Brett Sickafoose, Whitko; Cole Wireman, Kouts; Charlie Yoder, Westview.
District-1 Girls: Courtney Blakely, Hammond Bishop Noll; Trinity Clinton, Penn; Erin Coffel, Bremen; Christina Himelick, Mishawaka Marian; Destiny Jackson, Fort Wayne Northrop; Ryin Ott, LaPorte; Maddy Payne, NorthWood; Julia Schutz, Andrean; Trinity Thompson, Michigan City; Jaci Walker, Northridge.
District-2 Boys: Aidan Booher, Plainfield; Luke Brown, Blackford; Tylen Brown, Herron; Luke Dunn, Yorktown; Gus Etchison, Hamilton Heights; Dravyn Gibbs-Lawhorn, McCutcheon; Charles Hunter, Metropolitan; Tayson Parker, Northwestern; Jordan Walters, West Lafayette Harrison; Brody Whitaker, Greencastle.
District-2 Girls: Allison Bosse, Brownsburg; Tyra Ford, Anderson; Maddi Fulks, Bethesda Christian; Ava Gardner, Frankton; Kenna Kirby, Tri-West; Madeline Lawrence, Winchester Community; McKenna Layden, Northwestern; Teresa Maggio, McCutcheon; Sydney Parrish, Hamilton Southeastern; Ilani Williams-Harris, Covenant Christian (Indianapolis).
District-3 Boys: Brycen Graber, Barr-Reeve; Trey Kaufman, Silver Creek; Tyler Myers, Evansville Day; Josiah Ricketts, North Posey; Blake Sisley, Heritage Hills; Josh Smith, Monrovia; Lane Sparks, Greensburg; Kaden Stanton, New Albany; Kolden Vanlandingham, Northeastern; Dominic Walters, South Decatur.
District-3 Girls: Gracie Adams, Lanesville; Natalie Boesing, Our Lady of Providence; Darrian Carmean, Vincennes Lincoln; Jocelyn Cox, North Central (Farmersburg); Gabby Joyner, Evansville North; Peyton Murphy, Evansville Memorial; Kaybree Oxley, Tecumseh; Hannah Sisk, Princeton Community; Bailey Tabeling, Trinity Lutheran; Alaina Thorne, Washington.
2019-20 Weekly Winners
Nov. 4-Nov. 9: District-1 Girls: Lilliann Frasure, North Judson-San Pierre. District-2 Girls: Madison Layden, Northwestern, and Ashlynn Shade, Noblesville. District–3 Girls: Rebekah Gordon, Heritage Hills.
Nov. 11-Nov. 16: District-1 Girls: Erin Coffel, Bremen. District-2 Girls: Kendall Bostic, Northwestern. District-3 Girls: Natalie Boesing, Our Lady of Providence, and Koryn Greiwe, Columbus East.
Nov. 18-Nov. 23: District-1 Girls: Jessica Carrothers, Crown Point. District-2 Girls: Sydney Jacobsen, West Lafayette Harrison. District-3 Girls: Maya Chandler, Triton Central.
Nov. 25-Nov. 30: District-1 Boys: Nick Anderson, Lake Central. District-1 Girls: Brynn Shoup-Hill, Goshen. District-2 Boys: Gus Etchison, Hamilton Heights. District-2 Girls: Alana Vinson, Roncalli. District-3 Boys: Trey Kaufman, Silver Creek. District-3 Girls: Kylee Shelton, Bloomfield.
Dec. 2-Dec. 7: District-1 Boys: Jayden Broadnax, Garrett. District-1 Girls: Mercedes Rhodes, Oregon-Davis. District-2 Boys: Tayson Parker, Northwestern. District-2 Girls: Tyra Ford, Anderson. District-3 Boys: Tucker Biven, New Albany. District-3 Girls: Bailey Tabeling, Trinity Lutheran.
Dec. 9-Dec. 14: District-1 Boys: Keon Thompson, Merrillville. District-1 Girls: Christina Himelick, Mishawaka Marian. District-2 Boys: Dillon Ware, Danville Community. District-2 Girls: RaShaya Kyle, Marion, and Madeline Lawrence, Winchester Community. District-3 Boys: Jack Townsend, North Daviess. District-3 Girls: Darrian Carmean, Vincennes Lincoln.
Dec. 16-Dec. 21: District-1 Boys: Jake Wadding, Chesterton. District-1 Girls: TiAuna White, Fort Wayne Northrop. District-2 Boys: Luke Brown, Blackford. District-2 Girls: Kenna Kirby, Tri-West. District-3 Boys: Julian Norris, Evansville Bosse. District-3 Girls: Maycee Lange, Vincennes Lincoln.
Dec. 23-Dec. 28: District-1 Boys: Caleb Furst, Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian. District-1 Girls: Sydney Graber, Homestead, and Bailey Kelham, Garrett. District-2 Boys: Maximus Gizzi, New Palestine. District-2 Girls: Madison Layden, Northwestern, and Sydney Parrish, Hamilton Southeastern. District-3 Boys: Dominic Walters, South Decatur. District-3 Girls: Bailey Tabeling, Trinity Lutheran.
Dec. 30-Jan. 4: District-1 Boys: Johnell Davis, Gary 21st Century. District-1 Girls: Nyla Asad, LaPorte. District-2 Boys: Dravyn Gibbs-Lawhorn, McCutcheon. District-2 Girls: Anya Pothorski, Indiana School for the Deaf, and Ashlynn Shade, Noblesville. District-3 Boys: Andrew Welage, Greensburg. District-3 Girls: Isabella Reed, Greenwood Christian.
Jan. 6-Jan. 11: District-1 Boys: Charlie Yoder, Westview. District-1 Girls: Hanna Knoll, Angola. District-2 Boys: Gus Etchison, Hamilton Heights, and Payton Sparks, Winchester. District-2 Girls: Ella Collier, Danville. District-3 Boys: Lincoln Hale, Linton-Stockton. District-3 Girls: Kaybree Oxley, Tecumseh.
Jan. 13-Jan. 18: District-1 Boys: Cole Wireman, Kouts. District-1 Girls: Trinity Clinton, Penn. District-2 Boys: Luke Brown, Blackford, and Tayson Parker, Northwestern. District-2 Girls: RaShaya Kyle, Marion. District-3 Boys: Kooper Jacobi, Silver Creek. District-3 Girls: Chloe McKnight, Bedford North Lawrence.
Jan. 20-Jan. 25: District-1 Boys: Keon Thompson, Merrillville. District-1 Girls: Courtney Blakely, Hammond Noll. District-2 Boys: Brooks Barnhizer, Lafayette Jefferson. District-2 Girls: Sydney Jacobsen, West Lafayette Harrison. District-3 Boys: Langdon Hatton, North Harrison. District-3 Girls: Rylie Stephens, Triton Central.
Jan. 27-Feb. 1: District-1 Boys: Will Larkin, Winamac Community. District-1 Girls: Jazmen Watts, South Bend Riley. District-2 Boys: Brody Whitaker, Greencastle. District-2 Girls: Chloe McClain, Kokomo, and Taylor Westgate, Oak Hill. District-3 Boys: Kolten Sanford, Evansville Bosse. District-3 Girls: Natalie Boesing, Our Lady of Providence.
Feb. 3-Feb. 8: District-1 Boys: Connor Essegian, Central Noble. District-1 Girls: Mila Reynolds, South Bend Washington. District-2 Boys: Cortez Stoudemire, Western Boone. District-2 Girls: Rachel Loobie, Franklin Central. District-3 Boys: Nicholas Sebastiao, Scottsburg. District-3 Girls: Isabella Reed, Greenwood Christian.