By DYLAN MALONE
Bellmont and Adams Central are once again extending their school year in the spring time thanks to some talented individuals.
Trying to figure out which even to attend myself is one of my favorite problems to have as a sports editor.
The Squaws are onto something as they head into the weekend’s festivities with high hopes of making noise at the state level. Hankenson is seeded number one in the high jump and could (should) be a state champion in that event.
In talking to coach Risch this season, I get the feeling that Bellmont could make a lot of teams nervous on Saturday. They are ranked seventh in the final team poll by the coaches but I get the feeling that they are just a bit better than that. Northrop is ranked number two and they won regional by the skin of their teeth against a Bellmont squad who were hot on their heels in just about every event.
Alexis Harvey’s last chance to get the best of Wayne’s Briona Thomas who is gunning for her second straight championship in both the 100 and 200 Dash races. Should Thomas win both, she will join an elite group of three girls who have won in consecutive seasons in those events. The last girl to do so was Candyce McGrown of Warren Central when she won in 2007 and 2008.
In my humble opinion, Harvey has the hunger and determination to end Thomas’ streak. She has fought all season with Wayne’s best runner and the state level may push her over the edge and into the winner’s circle. The two girls will be the duo to watch in those two events as Harvey is seeded second in the 100 and third in the 200 by three one-hundredth of a second behind North Side’s Dyamond Morris.
With five girls vying for points for Bellmont in eight events, the chances of being in the top 10 are looking pretty good for coach Risch and his squad.
Adams Central has put their stamp on the spring with impressive wins in softball and baseball. Coach Blake’s Lady Jets are headed back to their second straight semi-state with a ridiculous win over Bremen 5-2. Before last season, no Lady Jets’ team had even brought home a sectional title.
Just when teams thought it was safe to play AC with Alyssa Keller moving on to the collegiate game, her freshman sister, Kara, has put her post-season pants on with a huge walk-off in the bottom of the seventh to thrust AC back into the elite eight once again.
The interesting part about AC’s success is simply how untimely it is. While I was amongst the loudest cheerers in the stands at sectional, I can’t help but wonder what the Lady Jets are getting themselves into if they win another semi-state title. Due to the new IHSAA success rule, AC will move up to 3A next season if they win twice on Saturday.
I won’t go into the details of the point system again today, but just thinking about it is a great conversation to have. How many seniors can say that they were so good when they played a sport that they forced their team to move up a class? Now there’s some bragging rights and a good story to tell the grandkids someday.
Meanwhile, the boys are making their mark in the success book winning their third sectional in four years. Top to bottom, AC has the scariest batting lineup left in 2A’s regional class. If the pitching remains solid, the Jets could do some serious damage to the remaining field. If it weren’t for the bats finally cooling off mid-way against Luers in the sectional championship final, the Jets may have 10-runed the Knights at Indiana Tech.
Throw in golf sectionals and it should be a pretty hectic Saturday of sports. I can’t wait!