Post-Tribune Latest news from Post-Tribune Online en-us (Editor) Post-Tribune 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Girls Basketball: South Central’s Riley Popplewell a ‘sleeper’ who’ll open some eyes ]]> Lead story image

INDIANAPOLIS — South Central rising junior Riley Popplewell is not a well-known player to most college basketball coaches, despite averaging a double-double last season. A three-sport standout, Popplewell doesn’t play on the AAU basketball circuit. Instead, she spends her summer going through offseason volleyball, basketball and softball workouts with her high school programs. That plan benefits the South Central teams, but causes Popplewell to live with a certain level of anonymity when it comes to basketball recruiting. So participating Wednesday in the IBCA Top 100 Showcase at Ben Davis High School had added significance for Popplewell. About 60 college coaches … ]]> Fri, 01 Aug 2014 02:05:51 -0500 <![CDATA[ West Side quarterback Ramone Atkins jumps to Merrillville ]]> Lead story image

When Ramone Atkins’ name showed up on the Merrillville roster at, the West Side players were buzzing. The website is place for high school coaches to list video and stats for colleges. They had heard he was possibly looking to leave but no one, not even the coaches were sure of his intentions. Turns out, the hunch was correct. Merrillville coach Zac Wells confirmed Tuesday that Atkins had enrolled in school. He won’t know for sure if he is on the team until Monday, the first day of practice. But Wells obviously expects him to play or his name … ]]> Wed, 30 Jul 2014 02:05:50 -0500 <![CDATA[ Football: East Chicago Central ready for new challenges ]]> Lead story image

Coming off the strongest season in program history, East Chicago Central’s JaDoun Williams knows what lies ahead for the Cardinals. The Cardinals went 11-3 in 2013, recording the program’s first sectional and regional titles. The Cardinals will look to first-year coach Jay Novak to take the helm with a team that lost 29 seniors. Williams, for one, is ready for the challenge. “We did lose guys to graduation, but we’ve got some up-and-coming players,” Williams said. “We’ve got to work together, get together as a team. So far, we’re looking good. We’ve got to keep pushing, keep working and getting … ]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 02:05:30 -0500 <![CDATA[ Softball: Kate Stake ready to get rolling as Valparaiso coach ]]>

In the short time since finding out she’s taking over as Valparaiso softball coach, Kate Stake already has developed a plan for continuing the program’s tradition of success. Stake, who has spent the past eight seasons as an assistant coach at the Division-I level, is well aware that sustaining a competitive mid-major program year in and year out all starts on the recruiting trail. “I think the key is to find the right fit,” Stake said. “I’m not big on selling a school because if you’re unhappy, I don’t think you’re going to play well once you get here. I … ]]> Thu, 31 Jul 2014 02:05:16 -0500 <![CDATA[ Football: Merrillville digging its depth ]]> Lead story image

Merrillville coach Zac Wells looks around at his team and doesn’t see one huge story line to watch or worry about. He sees depth across the board. He sees position battles developing on offense and defense as the 2014 season nears. Wells likes what he sees. “Right now, we’ve got a lot of competition at a lot of position,” Wells said. “That’s a really good thing. We’ve had a good offseason with some good returning players who put in the work. There is young guys who will be new faces to other people. It has created a good amount of … ]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 02:08:12 -0500 <![CDATA[ Football: Numbers – and enthusiasm — up at Portage ]]> Lead story image

Portage’s Nate Cherry is counting the days until Aug. 22. That’s when the Indians open the 2014 season at Mishawaka, and Cherry, a senior, is raring to go. Where will he be playing? A little here, a little there — and just about everywhere in between. “I play offense and defense, so wherever,” Cherry said. “Safety, running back, some quarterback and some slot receiver. Wherever the coaches need me, I’ll go.” That team-first mentality is one of many reasons Portage coach Wally McCormack is excited for the upcoming campaign. A year ago, the Indians went 6-4 overall and 5-2 mark … ]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 15:51:05 -0500 <![CDATA[ West Side’s Lonnie Johnson the P-T 2014 Boys Track Athlete of the Year ]]> Lead story image

One of the biggest races of Lonnie Johnson’s life is one he almost didn’t run. “Yeah, I didn’t want to run the 4-by-4,” the West Side graduate said. “But my cousin went down. One goes down, somebody has to step up.” With Jon Vea’ Johnson out of the 1,600-meter relay at last month’s state meet, West Side needed an alternate. It took some selling on the part of veteran West Side coach Gene Johnson to get Lonnie Johnson to join Deronte Buggs, Barry Wesby and Carlton Sims on that relay. “He knew he had not run sufficient quarters all season … ]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 02:05:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ West Side’s Gene Joshnon the P-T 2014 Boys Track and Field Coach of the Year ]]> Lead story image

Gene Johnson had been part of a state championship program before. As an assistant on Willie Williams’ staff, he had a ringside seat for five title runs for West Side’s boys track program from 1974 to ’80. But in a long career at West Side that began when the school opened in 1968 and included stints as head coach in football, wrestling and track, Johnson never had a title to call his own. Till last month. Down three points to Carmel headed into the final event, the 1,600-meter relay, at the state meet in Bloomington, the Cougars finished second in … ]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 02:05:12 -0500 <![CDATA[ Post-Tribune 2014 All-Area Boys Track and Field Team ]]>

First team 100 — Jon Vea’ Johnson, sr., West Side Raves: Took third at state in 10.94 seconds. Also was third at state as a junior. 200 — Jon Vea’ Johnson, sr., West Side Raves: Runner-up at state in 21.76. Fourth at state as a junior. 400 — Carlton Sims, jr., West Side Raves: Scored a key point at state, taking ninth in 49.51. 800 — Billy Biehl, jr., Chesterton Raves: Finished 19th at state at 1:59.11. 1,600 — Anthony Didion, sr., LaPorte Raves: Moved up from eighth as a junior to take second at state (4:14.63). 3,200 — Andrew … ]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 02:04:50 -0500 <![CDATA[ Girls Basketball: Merrillville’s Victoria Gaines likely out for season after tearing ACL ]]> Lead story image

Victoria Gaines couldn’t wait for her senior year to start. The Merrillville standout must now come to grips with the grim reality her prep basketball career could be finished. The Michigan State recruit tore her right anterior cruciate ligament at the NHSBCA Rising Senior Academy in Indianapolis earlier this week. It’s a cruel twist of fate for Gaines, who late in her freshman year suffered a torn left anterior cruciate ligament and meniscus, a dislocated knee, a compound fracture of her tibia, and strained her LCL and MCL, in a Class 4A Portage Sectional semifinal game loss to Michigan City. … ]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 00:02:57 -0500 <![CDATA[ Football: Former EC coach Stacy Adams named assistant for North team in IFCA All-Star game ]]> Lead story image

For Stacy Adams, it’s a nice way to cap 25 years of coaching. It all started as an assistant for Valparaiso University in 1989. It could all end Friday as an assistant for the North team in the Indiana Football Coaches Association North-South All-Star game. Adams was selected for the squad in January after East Chicago won its first regional and sectional. He left East Chicago in March to take the job as athletic director at South Bend Washington. “Yes, this is my last hurrah but you never say never,” Adams said. Adams didn’t have any misgivings about coaching even … ]]> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 02:08:06 -0500 <![CDATA[ P-T Golfer of the Year: Andrean’s Jack Musgrave ]]> Lead story image

Vanquishing the ghost in Jack Musgrave’s regional closet wasn’t easy, but it was worth it. The Andrean 59ers golfer was good enough during the season for three years to play with the very best from Northwest Indiana. He just wasn’t quite good enough to get downstate. Three times, Musgrave had tried to qualify for the state finals. Three times, he failed. He had decent rounds — twice at Beechwood and once at Battle Ground — but he wasn’t all that close. He missed by five strokes both times at Beechwood and by three last year at Battle Ground. Predictably, his … ]]> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 02:06:32 -0500 <![CDATA[ P-T Coach of the Year: Boone Grove’s Bob Lukas ]]> Lead story image

Boone Grove coach Bob Lukas had one thought about being named the Post-Tribune Coach of the Year. This season was cake for him. “The girls team has seven or eight freshmen on it,” he said. “We have one player with experience back. If I can manage that, I am the coach of the year.” Leave it Lucas to say something completely irreverent and humorous about something as special as the award. What he really means is that he was blessed with his dream team. That included Brad Bobrowski, Tim Shaffer, Grant Stockwell, Logan Lucas and Zach Wagner. For Lukas, the … ]]> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 02:06:51 -0500 <![CDATA[ Post-Tribune Boys Golf All-Area Team ]]>

first Team Jack Musgrave  Andrean, senior Raves: Made it downstate for first time in his career. By the numbers: Averaged 36.5 for nine holes and 74 for 18. The Post-Tribune Player of the Year. Matt Meneghetti Lake Central, Senior Raves: MVP of the Duneland Athletic Conference. Will play at Carthage College. By the numbers: Finished 19th in state. Shot sizzling 69 at Lafayette Regional. Averaged 76.2 for 18 holes. Mike Lee Crown Point, junior Raves: Best underclass golfer on the team. Finished 28th at the state finals. All-State selection. By the numbers: Averaged 74.3 for 18 holes and 38.1 for nine. Brad … ]]> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 02:06:42 -0500 <![CDATA[ Football: Michigan City ready for next step ]]> Lead story image

One loss cannot doom a season. It just can’t. It is a mindset Michigan City’s Matt Schoof has taken to heart heading into the fall season. “I think if we continue to keep up the hard work in practice, keep the energy up, we can win a lot of games,” Schoof said. “If we lose a game, we just have to get over it. Not like last year, against Chesterton. We’ve got to get over it.” The Chesterton game? Leading by 17 points in the fourth quarter, Michigan City blinked, allowing its Duneland Athletic Conference rivals to storm back and … ]]> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 02:05:57 -0500 <![CDATA[ Girls Basketball: Merrillville rising senior Victoria Gaines gets scare with knee sprain ]]> Lead story image

INDIANAPOLIS — Merrillville rising senior Victoria Gaines was relegated to sitting on the end of the bench with a blanket covering her legs, occasionally reaching down to massage her right knee. The scene wasn’t quite what the Michigan State recruit envisioned for her time participating in the NHSBCA Rising Senior Academy in Indianapolis, which brought 11 of the state’s top juniors to Ben Davis High School to compete against teams from Iowa, Ohio and Wisconsin. Gaines came off the bench during the first game of the three-day event, but her time on the court was quickly cut short. She jumped … ]]> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 02:09:07 -0500