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With Bedford North Lawrence junior Dominique McBryde in the fold, and Indianapolis Pike junior Brittany Ward on the watch list, Purdue fans will want to check out the Hall of Fame Classic this December. The 2013 Girls’ City Securities Hall of Fame Classic will be held at the New Castle Fieldhouse on Friday, December 27, 2013. The four-team field consists of Rushville taking on Homestead in the 11:00 am game, followed immediately by the Bedford North Lawrence and Pike game. Losers advance to a 6:00 pm consolation game, to be followed by the winners in the championship game.
The Hall of Fame Classic has a history of being a premier event. This is the 30th year of selecting some of the state's top girls teams. Over those years, 20 Indiana Miss Basketball honorees have participated in the game, as well as 16 of the top 20 players on the Indiana all-time top scorers list. And in over half of the years, one of the four participating schools has gone on to win a state championship that same year.
Below is a look at the four teams in the field this year, courtesy of the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame.
The Lady Lions expect to return four starters from their 22-4 regional championship team that won 22 of their final 24 contests.
5’9 junior Mackenzie Campbell averaged 15.1 points per game, leading to selection as a member of this summer’s Indiana Junior All-Star squad. 5’9 sophomore Sarah Cook averaged 12.5 points, 5’11 junior Keragan Niehoff averaged 11.2 points and 11.2 rebounds and 5’11 junior forward Kelsi Ash averaged 6.7 points and 5.6 rebounds this season.
The Lady Lions program is one of the state’s most storied – their 28 all-time sectional championships is a state record and their 11 regional titles ties for 4th best in state history.
Head coach Melissa Marlow has concluded her 13th year leading the program, with a 184-119 record. She has led her teams to sectional championships in seven of the past 10 seasons.
Rushville makes a record 5th appearance in the girls Classic. Marlow’s team won the 2009 championship, while Lady Lion teams coached by Hall of Fame inductee Cinda Rice Brown were runners-up in 1984 and participants in 1989 and 1993.
A youthful Spartans team amassed a 21-4 record with eyes toward even more success in the future. A team that played no seniors, one junior, six sophomores and three freshmen this past season, each of their four losses came to teams who won a sectional championship.
5’8 junior guard Sydney Buck (Butler University) averaged 21.9 points, shooting 46% from the field, 44.6% on three-point attempts and making 119 three-pointers and has been tabbed as a member of the core team of the 2013 Indiana Junior All-Stars. 5’6 sophomore guard Josie Fisher (IPFW) averaged 13.0 points and 7.4 assists, 6’0 sophomore Grace German averaged 10.6 points and a team-high 7.1 rebounds and 6’0 freshman Lindley Kistler averaged 9.0 points and 6.0 rebounds. German is the great-granddaughter of Hall of Fame inductee and former Indiana University head coach Branch McCracken.
Head coach Rod Parker has a 167-102 record in 12 years at Homestead. He has led them to an 80-16 record in last four years and seven consecutive non-losing seasons.
Homestead makes their first ever appearance in the girls or boys Classic. They will be the 2nd member of the Northeast Hoosier Conference to participate in the girls Classic in three years – Norwell was runner-up in the 2011 event.
Bedford North Lawrence
Returning five starters from their 28-0 4A state championship squad, the Stars look loaded again.
6’2 sophomore forward Dominique McBride (Purdue University) averaged 14.8 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.2 steals, 6’3 sophomore center Jenna Allen (Indiana) averaged 14.1 points and a team-best 8.1 rebounds, 5’7 junior guard Brittani Rizzi (University of Evansville) averaged 11.4 points, sophomore guard Alexa Bailey (Butler) averaged 7.3 points and a team-best 3.5 assists, and junior point guard Sammy Dillman averaged 5.8 points and 3.1 assists.
BNL has a 51-3 record over the past two seasons and will begin the 2013-14 season with a 37 game regular season win streak. Bedford has won 22 all-time girls sectionals (4th best in state history), 10 regionals, and state championships in 1983, 1991 and the 2013 4A title. They are one of only eight programs to have won three or more girls state championships and one of only two from that group to have won titles previous to the class basketball era.
The Stars will be lead by head coach Damon Bailey. Bailey, a 1990 BNL graduate, Indiana Mr. Basketball and Indiana's all-time prep scoring leader, enters his first season as head coach of the BNL girls. He previously served as BNL's boys varsity coach during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons, with a career record of 23-19. Bailey was MVP of the 1989 Boys Hall of Fame Classic, played at Indiana University's Assembly Hall.
BNL makes their third appearance in the girls Classic. They were participants in 1986 and were champions of the 1990 event.
The Red Devils return a majority of their roster coming off an 18-5 campaign, marking their winningest season in the last 7 years.
6’1 sophomore Brittany Ward averaged team-bests of 15.1 points and 7.3 rebounds, 5’9 freshman Tyana Robinson averaged 12.3 points and 6’0 junior Lyndsey Edwards averaged 5.5 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game. The Red Devils will need to replace senior point guard Asia Coats, one of two seniors on their roster. Coats averaged 7.3 points and a team-high 3.5 assists.
Head coach Bob Anglea has completed his 3rd season at Pike, where he is 42-27. He has a career record of 88-43 in six years as a head coach.
Pike makes their first appearance in the girls Classic. The Pike boys have participated twice (1989, 2000).