There isn’t much debate that the best regular-season tournament in boys and girls basketball each year is the Hall of Fame tourney. The Columbus North girls will play in that event a week from today at New Castle.
But this weekend, the Bull Dogs girls will host what might be the next-best regular-season tournament in Indiana this year. The eight-team Subway/Columbus North Invitational begins Friday night and concludes Saturday.
The eight teams entered the week with a combined record of 54-11.
The Bull Dogs (8-0), ranked No. 1 in the state’s Indiana Basketball Coaches Association poll and No. 2 in the Indiana Coaches of Girls Sports Association Class 4A poll, open with Avon (3-5) at 6:30 p.m. Friday in Memorial Gym. At the same time, Class A No. 1 Fort Wayne Canterbury (8-1) will meet Class 4A No. 7 Roncalli (9-1) in the auxiliary gym.
Class 3A No. 2 Norwell (7-0) and Kentucky power Notre Dame Academy (5-2) will play at 8:15 p.m. Friday in Memorial Gym. At the same time, Class 4A No. 6 Fort Wayne South (7-1) will meet Mishawaka (7-1) in the auxiliary gym.
Friday’s losers will play at 10 a.m. Saturday in both gyms, and the winners will follow at 11:45 a.m. in both gyms. The seventh-place game will be at 3:30 p.m. in the auxiliary gym, and the fifth-place game will be at the same time in Memorial Gym. The third-place and championship games will be at 5:15 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Memorial Gym.
“Besides the Hall of Fame Tournament, it might be the most rigorous tournament in the state this year in the regular season,” North coach Pat McKee said. “We’re very thrilled that those teams are willing to come. I think those teams are all looking for good competition, and we are, too.”
Roncalli (Purdue recruit Bridget Perry) and Fort Wayne South (IPFW recruit Ariana Simmons) have players who were core members of the Indiana Junior All-Stars last season, and Notre Dame Academy (Olivia Voskuhl) had a Kentucky Junior All-Star. Fort Wayne Canterbury has two Division-I recruits, and Mishawaka (Taylor Parmley) has a junior who is being heavily recruited.
McKee said Norwell has “a couple of kids that can shoot the ball like crazy.” He also had big praise for Fort Wayne South.
“They’re phenomenally good,” he said. “They’ve very much like Pike, but deeper. They don’t have a lot of size, but they have depth.”
Dogs’ opponent changed
North will face a different opponent than originally scheduled next week in the first round of Richmond’s Bob Wettig Tournament.
The Bull Dogs will play Louisville Moore at 4 p.m. Dec. 27 at Richmond High School. Moore replaces Arlington, which dropped out of the tourney.
The 16-team tournament runs through Dec. 29. North is the defending champion.
North, Jennings swimmers ranked
Several North boys and girls and one Jennings County boy are listed among the Indiana Swimming Coaches Association rankings. The Bull Dog boys are tied for No. 5 overall, and the girls are No. 31.
North junior Cody Taylor is ranked No. 2 in both the boys 200-yard individual medley (1 minute, 52.38 seconds) and the 100 breaststroke (57.07). Senior Sam Parker is No. 8 in the 500 freestyle (4:39.43) and No. 18 in the 200 freestyle (1:45.33); and junior Sam Loescher is No. 10 in the 100 freestyle (46.91), No. 12 in the 50 freestyle (21.50) and No. 23 in the 200 freestyle (1:46.63). The Bull Dogs are No. 4 in the 400 freestyle relay (3:16.54), No. 7 in the 200 freestyle relay (1:30.35) and No. 22 in the 200 medley relay (1:42.97).
Jennings senior Taylor Eder is No. 13 in the 100 backstroke (53.91).
For the girls, North sophomore Marah Bieger is No. 13 in the 200 IM (2:08.29) and No. 18 in the 100 breaststroke (1:18.10). Sophomore Maddie Wyke is No. 18 in the 100 butterfly (58.58); senior Rachael Sollman is No. 22 in the 50 freestyle (24.74) and No. 23 in the 100 freestyle (53.65); and senior Emma Wyke is No. 25 in the 100 backstroke. The Bull Dogs are No. 14 in the 200 medley relay (1:54.10), No. 17 in the 200 freestyle relay (1:44.02) and No. 20 in the 400 freestyle relay (3:49.20).
Most of the times in individual events were from last season.
Hauser-Brown County time changed
The time has been changed for the Hauser at Brown County boys basketball game scheduled for Jan. 5.
The junior varsity game now will begin at 6:30 p.m. The varsity will follow around 8 p.m.