Week-16 of the IBCA/Franciscan Health Player of the Week Awards Sees Silver Creek Come Up Golden
Silver Creek Dragon fans have a lot to be excited about, with boys’ and girls’ teams highly ranked in the polls. This week, the District-3 representative selected in each sport is a Dragon, and the girls’ team has punched its ticket to Indianapolis and the State Finals. Four additional ballplayers from around the state join the two Silver Creek winners as Week-16 IBCA/Franciscan Health Players of the Week.
Pioneer Senior Olivia Brooke, Brownsburg Senior Ally Becki, Silver Creek Junior Kynidi Striverson, Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian Senior Caleb Furst, Westfield Junior Braden Smith, and Silver Creek Senior Trey Kaufman are the recipients for Feb. 15-Feb. 20 in the recognition program coordinated by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association. Brooke is the girls’ winner, and Furst is the boys’ winner in District-1. Becki and Smith are the girls’ and boys’ recipients, respectively, in District-2. Striverson is the girls’ honoree, and Kaufman is the boys’ honoree in District-3.
Pioneer Lady Panther Olivia Brooke saved the best for last, putting together a fine Senior season. But Saturday in the Semi-State might have been her finest performance yet. With the Lady Panthers trailing much of the game, including entering the fourth quarter down 47-44, the 5-9 forward scored 18 second half points, 13 in the fourth quarter alone, and Pioneer outscored Northfield in the final stanza, 26-7, to rally and defeat the Lady Norse 70-54. Additionally, Brooke grabbed 11 second half rebounds. On the game, she was 6-11 from the field, she made seven free throws, and she scored 19 points and snagged 16 caroms in total. She also added three assists and a steal in the comeback victory.
Blackhawk Christian Senior Caleb Furst has often looked like a man among boys throughout his career, but this past week he would face a pair of worthy opponents. In a Wednesday trip to Marion to face the Giants, Furst made his presence felt at both ends of the floor in an 89-71 win. The 6-9 front-liner scored 21 points, grabbed 15 rebounds, and blocked five shots, helping the Braves move their record to 18-3 at the time. Furst also found teammates on several occasions, racking up five assists.
Saturday, Furst and the Braves headed to Indianapolis to take on Crispus Attucks. They narrowly escaped with a 75-72 success, but the Senior forward was again stellar. Committed to Purdue University, Furst showed why, making 8-10 shots from the floor and scoring 22 points in the effort. But it was his 18 rebounds that made it tough for Attucks to overcome. The Senior also tallied three assists in the game.
Brownsburg Senior Ally Becki put on a show in Jeffersonville Saturday, as she led her Lady Bulldogs to an impressive 49-27 win over the Franklin Community Grizzly Cubs, to advance to the Class 4A State Finals this weekend. The 5-8 guard was scorching from the field, burying 12-14 shots, 2-3 from long range, and a perfect 5-5 from the line, outscoring Franklin by herself with 31 points. Becki, a Ball State University signee, also contributed nine rebounds, four assists, and two steals in the triumph.
Westfield’s Braden Smith probably doesn’t get quite the publicity that he should, but last week he certainly made his opponents take notice. In a 67-61 win at Franklin Central on Friday night, the Junior point guard nearly posted a triple-double, helping the Shamrocks to the slim victory. Smith was 8-13 from the field, 2-5 from deep, and he knocked down a solid 12-14 from the charity stripe, scoring 30 points. He also grabbed eight rebounds, dished out nine assists, and snagged four thefts in the effort.
The next day, Westfield hosted Decatur Central, comfortably defeating the Hawks, 72-45. Smith again shone brightly by showing off his versatility. The 6-0 Junior was 11-18 from the floor, he knocked down a pair of 3-pointers, and he was 5-6 from the line this game, scoring 29 points in limited time. Smith again collected eight rebounds, and he added five assists and five steals to the win.
The Silver Creek Lady Dragons have been on a mission this season, and their journey will now take them to Indianapolis, following a 59-43 victory over Tri-West, in which they led throughout. Junior point guard Kynidi Striverson was the main catalyst for Silver Creek, as she was poised and in control throughout the contest. The 5-8 Junior scored 18 points, grabbed eight rebounds, handed out three assists, and picked the ball off three times. The Dragons will play Saturday in the Class 3A State Finals.
Not to be completely outdone by the ladies last weekend, Silver Creek Senior Trey Kaufman put together a pair of nice outings for the Dragons as well. Friday evening, in a 92-54 Mid-Southern Conference win against Corydon Central, the 6-9 forward make quick work in limited action. Kaufman was 12-16 from the field and knocked down five free throws, as he scored an easy 29 points. He went on to add 15 rebounds and an impressive eight assists out of the pivot.
Saturday evening, Kaufman and the Dragons hosted a very good Plainfield team. The Quakers matched up reasonably well with Kaufman inside, but he was still able to manage 26 points and 10 rebounds on the night, his second double-double in as many days. The Purdue University signee was 10-18 from the floor and 6-8 from the free throw line. He also blocked four shots in the win.
This is the 13th season for the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association Player of the Week program, but the first season it is presented by Franciscan Health, a corporate sponsor of the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association.
Player of the Week winners are chosen each week from each of the IHSAA’s three districts. Girls winners will be chosen through next 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-16 (2020-21)
District-1 Boys: Brayden Bontrager, Lakeland; Cade Brenner, NorthWood; Brendan Carr, South Central (Union Mills); Connor Essegian, Central Noble; Jalen Jackson, Carroll (Fort Wayne); Christopher Mantis, Lowell; Jackson Paul, Churubusco; Luke Saylor, Heritage; Naylon Thompson, Fort Wayne Bishop Luers; Blake Wesley, South Bend Riley.
District-1 Girls: Addi Baker, Northfield; Jessica Carrothers, Crown Point; Hailey Cripe, Pioneer; Lilliann Frasure, North Judson-San Pierre; Francisca Galicia, South Bend Washington; Saniya Jackson, Carroll (Fort Wayne); Amiyah Reynolds, South Bend Washington; Maiah Shelton, Norwell; Lilly Stoddard, Crown Point.
District-2 Boys: Brooks Barnhizer, Lafayette Jefferson; Vincent Brady, Cathedral; Steele Brasfield, New Palestine; Mason Brooks, North Putnam; Champ Ellis, Union (Modoc); Gus Etchison, Hamilton Heights; Riley Goodnight, Frankfort; Isaiah Stafford, Crispus Attucks; Jackson Ullom, Monroe Central; Kobe Ward, Danville.
District-2 Girls: Kelsey DuBois, University; Novalee Glass, Brownsburg; Ashlee Schram, Tipton; Adrie Thompson, Tri-West; Ella Wolfe, Tipton.
District-3 Boys: Josiah Dunham, Evansville Christian; Rasheed Elemikan, Greenwood Community; Langdon Hatton, North Harrison; Curt Hopf, Barr-Reeve; Lane Lauderbaugh, South Decatur; Chandler Moore, Evansville North; Logan Rohrbacher, East Central; Cody Samples, South Ripley; Lane Sparks, Greensburg; Kaden Stanton, New Albany.
District-3 Girls: Kuryn Brunson, Franklin Community; Aubrey Burgess, Linton-Stockton; Kalea Fleming, Loogootee; Marissa Gasaway, Silver Creek; Brooklynn Jones, Loogootee; Brooklyn Stubblefield, Greenwood Christian; Gentry Warrick, Linton-Stockton.
2020-21 Weekly Winners
Nov. 2-Nov. 7: District-1 girls: Courtney Blakely, Hammond Bishop Noll. District-2 girls: Olivia Nickerson, Twin Lakes. District–3 girls: Hope Fox, East Central.
Nov. 9-Nov. 14: District-1 girls: Mariah Wyatt, Wabash. District-2 girls: Tyra Ford, Anderson, and McKenna Layden, Northwestern. District-3 girls: Rebekah Gordon, Heritage Hills.
Nov. 16-Nov. 21: District-1 girls: De’Mour Watson, Elkhart. District-2 girls: Erikka Hill, Shenandoah. District-3 girls: Gracie Adams, Lanesville.
Nov. 23-Nov. 28: District-1 boys: Cole Wireman, Kouts. District-1 girls: Jessica Carrothers, Crown Point. District-2 boys: Brooks Barnhizer, Lafayette Jefferson, and Gus Etchison, Hamilton Heights. District-2 girls: Jayla Smith, Lawrence North. District-3 boys: Kooper Jacobi, Silver Creek. District-3 girls: Sydney Jaynes, Trinity Lutheran.
Nov. 30-Dec. 5: District-1 boys: J.R. Konieczny, South Bend St. Joseph. District-1 girls: Olivia Smith, Fort Wayne South Side. District-2 boys: Ian Scott, Plainfield. District-2 girls: Skylie Lutz, Union City. District-3 boys: Julian Norris, Evansville Bosse. District-3 girls: Kylee Edwards, Shelbyville.
Dec. 7-Dec. 12: District-1 boys: Caleb Furst, Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian. District-1 girls: Ellia Foster, Bremen. District-2 boys: Brody Whitaker, Greencastle. District-2 girls: Ariana Wiggins, Heritage Christian. District-3 boys: Logan Rohrbacher, East Central. District-3 girls: Abby Fleetwood, Brown County.
Dec. 14-Dec. 19: District-1 boys: Christopher Mantis, Lowell. District-1 girls: Courtney Blakely, Hammond Bishop Noll. District-2 boys: Luke Brown, Blackford. District-2 girls: Alli Harness, Carroll (Flora). District-3 boys: Lane Sparks, Greensburg. District-3 girls: Isabella Reed, Greenwood Christian.
Dec. 21-Dec. 26: District-1 boys: Luke Goode, Homestead. District-1 girls: Jessica Carrothers, Crown Point. District-2 boys: Brooks Barnhizer, Lafayette Jefferson. District-2 girls: Katie Burton, Fishers. District-3 boys: Curt Hopf, Barr-Reeve. District-3 girls: Juliann Woodard, Jennings County.
Dec. 28-Jan. 2: District-1 boys: Fletcher Loyer, Homestead. District-1 girls: Courtney Blakely, Hammond Bishop Noll. District-2 boys: Trey Flatt, Covenant Christian (Indianapolis). District-2 girls: Ashlynn Shade, Noblesville. District-3 boys: Stephen Atkinson, Owen Valley. District-3 girls: Ali Saunders, North Harrison.
Jan. 4-Jan. 9: District-1 boys: Jackson Paul, Churubusco. District-1 girls: Lilliann Frasure, North Judson-San Pierre. District-2 boys: Gus Etchison, Hamilton Heights. District-2 girls: McKenna Layden, Northwestern. District-3 boys: Trey Kaufman, Silver Creek. District-3 girls: Vanessa Shafford, Linton-Stockton.
Jan. 11-Jan. 16: District-1 boys: Connor Essegian, Central Noble. District-1 girls: Jessica Carrothers, Crown Point. District-2 boys: Kobe Ward, Danville. District-2 girls: Zakia Rasheed, Bishop Chatard. District-3 boys: Owen Dease, Evansville Reitz. District-3 girls: Koryn Greiwe, Columbus East.
Jan. 18-Jan. 23: District-1 boys: Cole Wireman, Kouts. District-1 girls: Lilliann Frasure, North Judson-San Pierre. District-2 boys: Brody Whitaker, Greencastle. District-2 girls: Ashlynn Shade, Noblesville. District-3 boys: Lincoln Hale, Linton-Stockton. District-3 girls: Diana Burgher, North Harrison.
Jan. 25-Jan. 30: District-1 boys: Jalen Jackson, Carroll (Fort Wayne). District-1 girls: Ayanna Patterson, Homestead. District-2 boys: Luke Brown, Blackford. District-2 girls: Madelyn Bischoff, Roncalli. District-3 boys: Lane Lauderbaugh, South Decatur. District-3 girls: Gracie Adams, Lanesville.
Feb. 1-Feb. 6: District-1 boys: Joshua Fleming, Rensselaer Central. District-1 girls: Bailey Hartsough, Lakeland. District-2 boys: Leyton McGovern, McCutcheon. District-2 girls: Ashlynn Shade, Noblesville. District-3 boys: Lane Lauderbaugh, South Decatur. District-3 girls: Katherine Benter, Brownstown Central.
Feb. 8-Feb. 13: District-1 boys: J.R. Konieczny, South Bend St. Joseph. District-1 girls: Lilliann Frasure, North Judson-San Pierre. District-2 boys: Jesse Hall, Crawfordsville. District-2 girls: Kenna Kirby, Tri-West. District-3 boys: Chandler Moore, Evansville North. District-3 girls: Isabella Reed, Greenwood Christian.
Feb. 15-Feb. 20: District-1 boys: Caleb Furst, Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian. District-1 girls: Olivia Brooke, Pioneer. District-2 boys: Braden Smith, Westfield. District-2 girls: Ally Becki, Brownsburg. District-3 boys: Trey Kaufman, Silver Creek. District-3 girls: Kynidi Striverson, Silver Creek.