Bedford North Lawrence Sports
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VOLLEYBALL: BNL eager to test the best

BNL's Lexie Scott and the Stars are gunning for the best in the HHC.

BNL’s Lexie Scott and the Stars are gunning for the best in the HHC.

Big Three of Scott, Spears

and Arthur to lead the way

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

The Big Three, before the Miami Heat made the term common in the sports arena, first referred to the automobile manufacturers, then later the television networks. Bedford North Lawrence volleyball has its own version.

Gabrielle Arthur

Gabrielle Arthur

Lexie Scott, Alyssa Spears and Gabrielle Arthur are the veterans, the talented triumvirate with the experience and expertise. They are the stars among the Stars – the hitter, the quarterback and the scrambler.

“They are definitely our go-to players,” BNL coach Scott Saunders said. “For us to succeed, they have to play at a high level. And they are right now.”

Alyssa Spears

Alyssa Spears

As powerful as the three can be, they comprise only half of a starting lineup. Help is demanded, and it is available. BNL believes, even if the preseason Class 4-A state poll does not share the optimism, it has assembled a squad to challenge for a Hoosier Hills Conference and sectional title.

That means the Stars are shooting for the heavens. If they can compete with the best in the league, they can compete with anyone in the state. Three HHC teams are ranked in the initial top 10, and that manipulation of the spotlight likely won’t change. The conference is loaded. So is BNL.

“I think this is the deepest team I’ve ever had,” Saunders said. “I feel pretty confident putting any of them in there at any time. We’ve got a good team.”

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GIRLS SOCCER: North strikes late to kick Stars

Morgan Benstin

Morgan Benstin

Kat Emery

Kat Emery

Emily Baer

Emily Baer

BLOOMINGTON – Bloomington North scored two late goals to clip Bedford North Lawrence 5-3 and spoil the season opener for the Stars on Monday afternoon.

The Cougars owned a 1-0 lead at intermission before the Stars got their offense on track in the second half. Freshman Emily Baer got the ball rolling in the net with a goal at the 44-minute mark.

Morgan Benstin punched one home with 33 minutes left to give the Stars a 2-1 lead. The Cougars came back with two goals, but BNL’s Kat Emery produced the equalizer with 3:20 remaining.

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GIRLS GOLF: The end justifies the mean pin

Kennedy Holtsclaw

Kennedy Holtsclaw tracks her tee shot on the fourth hole at Otis Park. Holtsclaw carded a 39 on the front nine on Monday afternoon.

Third hole bites BNL’s best,

but Stars post win on front 9

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

The pin on the third hole at Otis Park was cut into a brutal spot – unfair according to some, certainly a challenge for everyone.

It claimed Bedford North Lawrence’s best as victims on Monday afternoon. But the Stars solved the other eight holes on the front nine to post a 181-194 victory over New Albany.

Kennedy Holtsclaw was the medalist with a 2-over 39 that included two birdies, and Bailee Gilmore posted her career-best score on the front with a 41.

And both got bit on their final hole.

Holtsclaw and Gilmore, playing partners, opened the round on the fourth tee in a match that began with a shotgun start. They got off to bulletproof starts, with Gilmore carding three straight pars while Holtsclaw birdied the par-5 fifth.

Holtsclaw made the turn with a birdie on the first hole to remain in red numbers, and Gilmore shook over back-to-back bogeys on 7-8. They stepped on the No.3 tee, intent on finishing with a flair.

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BOYS TENNIS: BNL singles out Barr-Reeve

BNL's Zach Tran rips a forehand during his match at No.2 singles on Monday afternoon. Tran won in straight sets.

BNL’s Zach Tran rips a forehand during his match at No.2 singles on Monday afternoon. Tran won in straight sets.

Stars sweep singles matches

for 3-2 win in season opener

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

Call him Zach Tran the Top-Spin Man.

Tran played to his strength, a wicked first serve and a tough top-spin forehand, and posted a key point as Bedford North Lawrence won its season opener on the asphalt courts at BNL on Monday afternoon.

The Stars swept the singles, and Tran set the tone with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Trent Graber at No.2 singles. Johnny Underwood fought off John Cangelosi 6-4, 6-4 at No.1 and Logan Treanor clipped Stephen Lang 6-4, 6-4 at No.3.

“We were hoping the singles would carry us,” BNL coach Donnie Thomas said. “That’s what the plan was.”

Tran played a power game that featured a deadly first serve and quality ground strokes.

“He’s got such good top-spin,” Thomas said, “That thing will die like a dead bird sometimes. It looks like it’s going out and just drop. It’s got more drop than anybody’s shot I’ve seen.”

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GIRLS GOLF: Stars slip to a Fuzzy eighth

Abbi Duncan

Abbi Duncan

Kennedy Holtsclaw

Kennedy Holtsclaw

HENRYVILLE – Bedford North Lawrence’s game got a little fuzzy and the Stars slipped back a step during the Fuzzy Zoeller Invitational at Champions Pointe on Saturday afternoon.

The Stars posted a team total of 361 to settle into eighth place in the 16-team field. Top-ranked Evansville North crushed the competition with a sensational score of 296, followed by Evansville Memorial (315) and Columbus North (318).

Kennedy Holtsclaw paced BNL with an 80 on the challenging par-72 layout. Abbi Duncan posted her best score of the season with an 88, but the rest of the Stars struggled .

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BOYS TENNIS: Stars pass the eye test

BNL's Johnny Underwood is the lone returning senior starter, and he will slide up to No.1 singles.

BNL’s Johnny Underwood is the lone returning senior starter, and he will slide up to No.1 singles.

BNL counting on fitness

to offset lack of experience

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

Bedford North Lawrence can pass the eye test. The Stars look good on the court. Can they play? They will find out soon enough.

If points can be won on fitness, the Stars have an advantage. BNL coach Donnie Thomas called his team “the best in-shape team we’ve ever had.” Unfortunately, while that aspect of the game is important, so are the basic strokes, strategy and experience.

BNL roster

BNL schedule

BNL is lacking the latter. With Johnny Underwood as the lone returning senior starter as he makes the move from doubles to No.1 singles, the Stars must mature rapidly.

The strength will be in singles, with Underwood, junior Zach Tran and Logan Treaner setting that half of the lineup. “They’ll have to come through for us,” Thomas said. That means the doubles must do double-time to catch up.

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FOOTBALL: Stars stampede through scrimmage

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BNL’s Matt Shoufler charges through Mitchell’s defense to score a touchdown during Friday night’s scrimmage. The Stars scored six times in varsity action.

BNL ‘scores’ six times

to dominate Mitchell

in preseason workout

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

Bedford North Lawrence, offensively challenged in 2013, broke loose with the mass impulse to locate the promised land on Friday night.

As stampedes go, this had clear direction and purpose – find the end zone. The Stars did that six during their three varsity sessions with the football during the IHSAA-sanctioned scrimmage at BNL Field.

Video: BNL preseason scrimmage

There were glitches, issues, penalties. If, for every time a yellow flag fluttered, an angel lost its wings, BNL would be guilty of grounding an entire legion. Two flags erased touchdowns. But that’s what preseason workouts are all about. Mitchell coach Troy Pritchett called it on-the-job training. And he is correct.

When the dust settled, and the herd was calmed, the Stars had eliminated everything in their path. Matt Shoufler scored twice on the ground and totaled 89 rushing yards, and BNL’s two-headed quarterback duo of Brayden Tidd and Chandler Nicholson connected on 6 of 9 passes for 62 yards and three TDS, with Austin Hughes snagging two of the scoring strikes.

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CROSS COUNTRY: BNL girls in like Flinn

BNL's Carrie Flinn sprints down the front straightaway during her tour of the 5K course at Brown County on Saturday morning.

BNL’s Carrie Flinn was the lone Star to compete in last year’s semistate race.

Junior runner setting the pace

as young Stars prepare to chase

peers in conference and sectional

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

One is the loneliest number. Bedford North Lawrence’s Carrie Flinn ran alone in the midst of a thundering herd during last year’s semistate race at Brown County. She would like to return during her junior campaign, with some friends to keep her company.

BNL coach Bill Deckard believes he might have the necessary talent to accompany Flinn through the state tournament series.

Diana Kattau

Diana Kattau

The Stars, with only one senior (Diana Kattau) on the roster, will be young. In this sport, that’s not necessarily a drawback. Flinn, junior Katlyn Eagan, sophomore Madison Ryan and freshman Joslyn Wever will comprise a talented and interesting pack.

“We have so many tools,” Deckard said. “That’s my biggest challenge – not the physical stuff, but trying to infuse a bit of the mental game into it. They’re talented, physically everything you want in running.”

Flinn used her semistate experience, crossing in 110th place in 21:25.5, as a learning tool. Now she’s faster and targeting those in front of her on the program’s record board. Her teammates have also displayed improvement.

Madison Ryan

Madison Ryan

“What you expect is to see progression from last year, which puts her within spitting distance of the school record,” Deckard said. “Madison is getting stronger every day, and she has that race mentality. You can tell she knows. We’re looking at them for leadership.”

BNL did suffer some key losses with graduation and the end of sharing athletes with the soccer program. Four players attempted that grueling double-duty grind last year, but the mileage broke them down by the end.

“The problem we had last year was we had the talent, but we were always hurt,” Deckard said. “That didn’t work. I’m about kids and about having the opportunities they want to have. But in the long haul, it’s a disservice to the program and the kid.

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BASKETBALL: IU ends Canadian tour with victory

Men's Basketball player head shots and GA head shots, 06/18/14_Mike Dickbernd

Ryan Burton

MONTREAL – Indiana University closed its Canadian exhibition tour with a 109-77 victory over the University of Quebec-Montreal on Wednesday afternoon.

Former Bedford North Lawrence standout Ryan Burton scored two points and added three assists.  Burton, a walk-on with the Hoosiers, saw 9 minutes of action. Troy Williams paced Indiana with 21 points while James Blackmon Jr totaled 20 points. Devin Davis grabbed 10 rebounds.

IU will ended its tour with a 4-1 record.

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FOOTBALL: Stars seek scrimmage ‘perfection’

BNL coach Steve Weber will be watching for perfect execution when the Stars host Mitchell in the IHSAA-sanctioned scrimmage on Friday night.

BNL coach Steve Weber will be watching for perfect execution when the Stars host Mitchell in the IHSAA-sanctioned scrimmage on Friday night.

BNL searching for depth

as it battles county rival

Mitchell in preseason test

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

Bedford North Lawrence football coach Steve Weber set the bar at its maximum height when asked what he wanted to see during Friday night’s IHSAA-sanctioned scrimmage with Mitchell:

“Perfection.” And he smiled.

Now if the Stars, coming off a 1-9 campaign, achieve that, Weber’s new nickname should be “Lombardi.” BNL promises vast improvement in Weber’s second season, even with the adjustments to the running game and the defensive secondary. But doing everything without a glitch in the preseason is closer to fantasy football than reality.

Weber doesn’t expect that. However, in the limited amount of plays (37 in three sessions) the varsity will be allowed, he wants to approach that level of precise execution.

“I expect that we should run our three core plays to perfection, and we’ve done them enough,” Weber said. “I want to see us compete and be aggressive. If the mental part is there, and we lack a little on the execution, we can clear that up. If the mental part isn’t there, we’re in trouble.”

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