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  • Time to gear up for high school football (maybe?)
    7/29/2020 Here’s hoping that Hamilton County has a fall sports season.
    Countdown to high school football, COVID-19 virus willing, is roughly three weeks away.
    There’s definitely some uncertainty in the county.
    We already know that Hamilton Southeastern schools will start school this fall using virtual classes from home.
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  • Could Cool Hand Luke be Indiana’s best shooter ever?
    5/6/2020 I’ve yet to have an opportunity to see Blackford High School junior Luke Brown do what he does best on a basketball court.
    I’ve heard many good things about him. Basically he’s a human scoring machine.
    Hopefully I can work in a trip to see him play in 2020, probably at The Indiana Basketball Hall of Classic at the New Castle Fieldhouse.
    I remember when someone on social media said that Lapel’s Mark Barnhizer was the best shooter not named (Rick) Mount.
    I recently saw a quote on social media when someone said that Luke Brown might be the best shooter ever.
    Wow . . . ! But you know, could it be that he might be?
    He’s what you call a gunslinger, quick draw, and obviously quite a deadly shooter from what I hear. I’ve seen a few players who’ve fit that image down through the years.
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  • 2/6/2020 

    Ashlynn Shade, Noblesville’s super freshman who leads the Lady Millers with a 20.3 scoring average and placed third in Hoosier Crossroads Conference scoring, will get her first taste of intense tournament pressure in tonight’s semifinal round of Sectional 8 at Westfield High School.

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  • Regional huge test for Sectional 8 survivor

    No matter the outcome of Sectional 8 this week, here’s a couple of strong possibilities for the near future in Indiana high school girls basketball:

    Whichever team advances from Westfield will likely need to get past both Class 4A No. 1 Northwestern (23-0) and then No. 4 Homestead (22-1) to reach the semi-state round.

    No easy task . . . indeed!

    Northwestern, the two-time defending 3A state champion, was forced to move up a level under the IHSAA Tournament Success Factor.

    And the Lady Tigers have yet to face a stern test in 4A. Their closest game so far was a 61-58 encounter against Maine West (Ill.).

    Their closest game against an Indiana Team was a 65-51 conquest of North Central.

    Yeah, they are that good! Ask anyone!

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  • 1/30/2020 

    There’s nothing like the drama of a last-second shot in high school basketball.

    There’s nothing like the feeling you get when the ball zips through the net.

    There’s nothing like that ecstatic feeling and expressing overwhelming joy and excitement . . . or the feeling you have when a loss can feel like a dagger to the heart.

    There’s nothing like your reaction whether you are a player on the court or a fan in the stands, on the winning or losing side of the floor. 

    You’re either going to walk away happy or sad. Wiping tears from your eyes or pumping your fist in the air while celebrating.

    That’s what this time of year is all about: It’s a one-and-done tournament. You’re either all in or all out . . . No second chances.

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  • 1/28/2020 

    The 2020 IHSAA girls basketball tournament is upon us . . .  just days away!

    The 45th Annual event starts with sectionals next week (Feb. 4-8).

    A few questions come to mind right off the bat:

    Are the Hamilton Southeastern Lady Royals, the 2019 Class 4A state champions, destined to repeat?

    First things first, what are the odds they can get out of a tough sectional that’s always extremely competitive?

    The Lady Royals have the most decorated and explosive player in the Sectional 8 field in 2019 Indiana Gatorade Female Player of the Year Sydney Parrish, whose 26.1 scoring average ranks second in the state. I would say that’s a pretty good sign for starters. 

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  • Just give this kid the ball

    Some thoughts, opinions and other notables:

    I watched Friday night’s tape-delayed Hamilton Heights-Lapel game on the TV 40 sports channel.

    I’ve been hearing a lot about Husky junior Gus Etchison, and it marked the first time I’ve seen him in action.

    I liked what I saw. He was terrific.

    The kid has GAME. He can really play. He had 34 points in a 21-point victory. Etchison did pretty much everything but sell popcorn. Very impressive player, indeed.

    And watching him reminded me a great deal of 1970 Carmel Indiana Mr. Basketball David Shepherd, who scored 66 points in a game his senior year.

    Gus has already delivered a 56-point performance this season. 

    Etchison is a 6-foot guard like Shepherd. He’s built like the Greyhound great and he also has black hair, and he plays with much the same flare. He’s quick, pushes the ball relentlessly, can shoot from far-away places, looks for the open man, and made a couple of “oh-wow-did-he-really-do that passes!’’ and he has tremendous upper body strength.

    Etchison also had two break-away dunks. Not sure I ever saw Shepherd dunk.

    The Husky spit-fire is averaging 25.9 points per game, seventh best in the state. He averages 5.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 2.0 steals and 0.2 blocks. He shoots 59 percent on 2s and 37 percent on 3s, as well as 75 percent from the foul line.

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  • 1/16/2020 

    As we head into a new New Year, I wish we could go back when people looked forward to reading newspapers.

    Millennials don’t read newspapers. Plain and simple. They are either hanging out in front of laptops or tablets or clicking on their IPhone, and likely using all of those devices.

    Most readership, especially in a small community, comes from our older folks who basically grew up with newsprint. And you can still get daily news in such communities, like you do in Hamilton County. Still, online publications are beginning to take over.

    I’ve been reading newspapers, especially the sports page, since junior high school. I used to deliver The Sunday Indianapolis Star. We always had The Kokomo Tribune in the Morrow home.

    In fact, if the morning Indy Star wasn’t in our driveway by 6 a.m., my dad turned into an Archie Bunker, and started muttering things young kids shouldn’t have to hear.

    And, too, I cannot remember a time I have not walked out to get my daily morning or evening paper.

    It’s a part of my life, a very big part of my life. I started writing sports for The Tribune the summer before my junior year at KHS.

    I have newspapers in my blood. Always have, always will.

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  • 1/14/2020 

    The Record Watch is building a full head of steam in Hamilton County girls high school basketball this season.

    The county’s scoring title, set by Courtney Cox (Cole), is not only in danger of being eclipsed, it could and most likely will happen relatively soon.
    The late Noblesville High School student-athlete graduated with 1,869 points.

    That was 31 years ago.Think about that. A pretty monumental feat indeed!

    Hamilton Southeastern’s Sydney Parrish and University’s Lindsey Syrek are in hot pursuit of both surpassing such a milestone.

    If they’re not aware of it, the seniors should be by now.

    Going into games this weekend, Parrish has scored 1,786 points; Syrek has tallied 1,730 points for her career.

    Talk about close!

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  • 1/9/2020 

    If you’re looking for a potential Indiana Mr. Basketball favorite in 2021, keep an eye on Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian’s Caleb Furst.

    Yeah, I know, such an award usually goes to a big-school student-athlete. 

    And Furst plays for a Class 2A school.

    The last 2A player earning the coveted award was Fort Wayne’s 6-foot-7 DeShaun Thomas in 2010. He finished his high school career with 3,018 points. Damon Bailey of Bedford North Lawrence is the career leader with 3,134 points.

    That said, Furst is a 6-10 forward. And a darn good one at that.

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