Bedford North Lawrence Sports
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GIRLS BASKETBALL: BNL remains firm at No.1

Bedford North Lawrence, the two-time defending Class 4-A state champion, maintained its status as the top team in Class 4-A.

The Stars are ranked No.1 in the Indiana Coaches of Girls Sports Association state poll. They are followed by Lawrence North, Columbus North, Homestead, Penn, Center Grove, Pike (up from 10th), Mooresville (down from 7th), Noblesville, Hamilton SE and North Central. BNL will face two of those foes (Mooresville and North Central) this week.

BNL, which opened with a 76-32 win over Mitchell, is also ranked No.1 in the all-class Indiana Basketball Coaches Association poll, followed by Lawrence North, Columbus North, Penn, Heritage Christian, Homestead, Mooresville, Pike, Center Grove and Roncalli in some first-week shuffling.

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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Watch BNL at Mitchell

TheHHCSports.com. with the cooperation of the Bedford North Lawrence coaching staff, plans to post the complete game video of each BNL girls basketball regular-season contest this season.

Click on the player to watch BNL’s 76-32 win at Mitchell in the regular-season opener on Nov. 15.

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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Mooresville a true test for BNL

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Alexa Bailey and the top-ranked Stars expect a challenge from No.7 Mooresville on Tuesday.

Top-ranked Stars expecting

tough challenge from No.7

Pioneers in home opener

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

Bedford North Lawrence is popping in the mouth guards, expecting to get smacked there, for its home opener on Tuesday.

Many opponents cringe and crawl into a dark place to seek safety when the Stars, ranked No.1 as they defend back-to-back Class 4-A state championships, walk through that door. Fright is a factor. Mooresville is not one of those.

The No.7 Pioneers (1-0) have historically played BNL fearlessly. The Stars (1-0) expect no less.

“Whether they’re good or not, they always play hard and it’s always a tough game,” BNL senior Alexa Bailey said. “This year, it will be a test. I hope we’re ready for it. They come out swinging.”

The Pioneers are definitely good. They return their starting lineup from last season intact, and they were good enough to win a sectional title while going 19-4. Mooresville will not back down from challenging BNL.

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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Stars ‘steal’ opening victory

Jenna Allen

BNL’s Jenna Allen powers her way to the basket. Allen scored 19 points and had 11 rebounds during BNL’s 76-32 win at Mitchell.

No.1 BNL forces 31 turnovers,

Alexa Bailey with 23 points

as Stars blister Bluejackets 

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

Box score

MITCHELL – Everybody, even the two-time defending Class 4-A state champions, suffers through first-game jitters. Kids aren’t cold-blooded, even if they are expected to be when the lights glare and the horn blares.

Bedford North Lawrence, with experience and expectations waging a tug-of-war on the nervous system, was not immune. For a few minutes, only a few, some twitching and tumbling caused a frown or two. Mitchell (1-1) scored – gasp! – and dug in the claws for the first half of the first quarter.

Video: No.1 BNL bounces Mitchell

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Alexa Bailey was two assists away from a triple-double with 23 points and 10 steals.

That’s when the Stars came out. The clouds of angst were blown away, and so were the Bluejackets, by a defensive tornado that forced 31 turnovers and powered No.1 BNL to a season-opening 76-32 victory on Saturday night.

Alexa Bailey, who might receive a restraining order from the Bluejackets for the way she harassed them, scored 23 points and pocketed 10 steals. She also had 8 assists, just two passes from a triple-double, to ignite the Stars from sluggish to sensational.

Jenna Allen added 19 points and 11 rebounds, and Dominique McBryde totaled 14 points on her birthday.

The real story was on the defensive front. After the Bluejackets’ Taylin Moore hit a 3-pointer in the final minute of the first quarter, keeping the Bluejackets within respectable range at 22-12, Mitchell went 16 minutes before its next field goal.

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BASKETBALL: Burton ‘perfect’ in IU opener

Ryan Burton

Ryan Burton

BLOOMINGTON – Former Bedford North Lawrence standout Ryan Burton was ‘perfect’ in Indiana University’s season-opening win over Mississippi Valley State on Friday night.

Burton scored 6 points, hitting all 3 of his shots, in 13 minutes as the Hoosiers rolled to a 116-65 victory. Burton, a walk-on, added 5 rebounds and 2 assists.

The Hoosiers had five players in double figures, paced by James Blackmon Jr. with 25 points.

Indiana (1-0), with players still serving suspensions, will host Texas Southern on Monday.

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BOYS BASKETBALL: New Albany favored in HHC poll

New Albany coach Jim Shannon shouts instructions. The Bulldogs (10-6) will visit BNL on Friday night.

New Albany coach Jim Shannon and the Bulldogs are favored to win the HHC title.

New Albany, the defending league and Class 4-A sectional champion, tops the inaugural Hoosier Hills Conference coaches preseason poll, conducted and released by TheHHCSports.com.

The Bulldogs topped the voting with 68 points among the league’s head coaches (with seven of the eight participating in the poll) to win the conference title. New Albany has won 10 titles during the past 21 years.

The coaches expect the challengers to include Columbus East (second with 48 points) and Bedford North Lawrence (third with 39). The league has not had co-champions since Jeffersonville and BNL shared the crown in 2000.

New Albany’s Jim Shannon, the dean of the HHC as he starts his 17th year with the Bulldogs, is 19th on the active coaching list with 446 career wins. The league has two new coaches at Madison (Cliff Hawkins, 17th on the active list with 453 career wins) and Floyd Central (Todd Sturgeon).

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GIRLS SOCCER: Dufresne named All-HHC

Morgan Benstin

Morgan Benstin

Jaclyn Dufresne

Jaclyn Dufresne

Bedford North Lawrence junior goalkeeper Jaclyn Dufresne was named to the Hoosier Hills Conference First Team.

Dufrense cemented the defense for the Stars, who finished the season 10-8-1 overall and 3-4 in the league.

Others on the First Team included Floyd Central’s Christin Miller, Leah Ellis, Gracie Fitzgerald and Emma Pappas; New Albany’s Morgan Miller and Lindsey Streigel; Seymour’s Kayla Griffin, Kelley Sharp and Louisa Carter; Jennings County’s Sydney Kirchner and Lexi Brown; Jeffersonville’s Rebekah Harris; and Columbus East’s Kristen Bellinger, Elissa Watkins, Bryn Eudy, Kylie Stattenfield and Bailey Dowd.

BNL’s Morgan Benstin was named Honorable Mention.

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GIRLS BASKETBALL: BNL’s trademark is titles

Dominique McBryde and the Stars will start their quest for a "three-peat" in the season opener at Mitchell on Saturday night.

Dominique McBryde and the Stars will start their quest for a “three-peat” in the season opener at Mitchell on Saturday night.

Stars to start chase for

‘three-peat’ as they open

new campaign at Mitchell

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

Slick-haired Pat Riley, the former coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, obtained a trademark for the term “three-peat” in 1989, and he still owns and enforces it. Ironically, the Lakers were chasing a third straight NBA title that season, and failed.

Can Bedford North Lawrence succeed where others could not?

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Alexa Bailey

The Stars, the two-time defending Class 4-A state champions, will begin their quest for a historic “three-peat” on Saturday night in the regular-season opener at Mitchell. No girls program has ever won three straight 4-A championships, and no team of any classification has ever won three straight titles under three different coaches.

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Jenna Allen

Jeff Allen, an assistant during the previous title runs of Kurt Godlevske (2013) and Damon Bailey (2014) has moved into the eye of the attention storm that swirls around the top-ranked team in the state. If only politicians had the same term limit, and were as successful in their jobs as recent BNL coaches. Allen, hopefully, plans on being more than a “one and done.”

His goal is the same as his Butler-based predecessors: Win it all. Period. And the Stars have the star power to continue their reign.

With All-State weapons Jenna Allen and Dominique McBryde up front, with Division I guard Alexa Bailey sliding over to run the show, with speed in a new-look backcourt that will rely on pressure and transition to frustrate and conquer, the Stars are built for success.

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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Sign(ing)s point in separate ways

BNLs Dominique McBryde, Alexa Bailey and Jenna Allen sign thewir national letters of intent to play college basketball during a National Signing Day at BNL on Wednesday morning.

BNL’s Dominique McBryde, Alexa Bailey and Jenna Allen sign their national letters of intent to play college basketball during a National Signing Day ceremony at BNL on Wednesday morning.

BNL trio of McBryde, Allen

and Bailey sign NLIs for

their college destinations

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

As a trio, Bedford North Lawrence seniors Dominique McBryde, Alexa Bailey and Jenna Allen will be forever linked, the core of two consecutive Class 4-A state championships and – with the Stars holding the No.1 ranking as 2014-15 begins – a possible historic third.

On Wednesday morning, they signed to go their separate ways.

Video: BNL stars sign for college

The three Division I recruits and All-State stars signed to cement their futures on National Signing Day. They inked their names to national letters of intent, changing their status from “recruits” to “signees” with a swift series of signatures on the necessary paperwork required by the NCAA.

McBryde is now officially a Purdue Boilermaker, Bailey is a Butler Bulldog, and Allen is a Michigan State Spartan. That’s their future. They have one more journey to complete together.

With their parents, school officials and classmates in attendance, the three Stars continued their practice of doing everything together. It also marked the beginning of the end. When this season concludes, no matter what that destiny might be, they will part.

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BOYS SWIMMING: Let the ‘suffering’ begin

BNLs Drew Baker cuts through the water during Tuesdays practice session at BNL pool.

BNL’s Drew Baker cuts through the water during Tuesday’s practice session at BNL pool.

BNL’s tight ‘band of brothers’

diving into new season with

small but dedicated roster

By Justin Sokeland

TheHHCSports.com

By the end, when the yardage totals have taken a toll on an aching body, when early-morning practice sessions in the midst of a wicked winter have trumped sleep, when the mind has wandered, only the mentally tough can survive a swimming season.

 Terry Tlustek

Terry Tlustek

Perhaps that’s why Bedford North Lawrence has only 12 swimmers and four divers for the 2014-15 roster. They are the few, the proud, the submariners in the water. “It’s really a band of brothers thing,” BNL coach Terry Tlustek said. “We all suffer and suffer together.”

Video: BNL swimming preview

The Stars, those who endure, will find that suffering worth it, if they can contend for, and win, a sectional championship. Tlustek believes that is possible, even with an under-manned roster, barely enough to fill all the events. There will be no rest for the weary.

“We don’t have a whole lot of numbers, but they’re doing well and are progressed to compete at a high level right away,” Tlustek said. “I wouldn’t say it’s a foregone conclusion, but I see a lot of potential. I’ve got no reason to think we can’t win the sectional.”

BNL schedule

BNL roster

The optimism centers on BNL’s quality. The seniors, paced by Drew Baker and Garrett McLaughlin, are expected to win their events. The supporting cast, with five sophomores comprising almost half the roster and freshmen making the jump from club to varsity competition, will be expected to score points. Nobody can take a night, or even an event, off.

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