Throughout the weekend and start of the week, your favorite amphibian is going to be checking in on the sectionals that will most interest our area teams and readers. The favorite team listed, well that is my pick to walk out of Saturday, February 8 with a trophy.
This Sectional has the typical Tuesday, Friday, Saturday schedule. Things will tip off at East Noble High School, where Carroll will look to defend their title for the fourth straight season.
Carroll has thrived with multiple scorers, going as deep as 13 sometimes but always being able to rely on around eight to chip in nightly. The return of Olivia Hoeppner after a long illness is huge for them. She can score, sure, but her physicality and energy on both ends of the floor makes the Chargers so much better.
This has been the team to beat in this Sectional for a few years and it is because of the depth and diversity on coach Mark Redding’s lineup. The structure of their guard play, their extra effort and energy from Hoeppner, Emily Parrett, Delane Sheets and Taylor Fordyce makes this team one that it is hard to get to the basket against. Don’t worry Carroll fans, there are stoppers down there too.
The Bruins may have not lived up to some expectations, but they have a core that could easily win this Sectional. TiAuna White is a walking double-double and arguably the best player in this field. But she is far from alone. Destiny Jackson can build up big stats in pretty much every statistical skill category and if a player like J’Asia Scott gets hot, then the Bruins have more high profile scorers than anybody else.
EAST NOBLE (9-15)
This is a team without a big senior contributor, which is great because they have had a solid season and plenty to build on for next year. Is an upset in winning this Sectional out of conversation? No, but it won’t be easy. They have a very good junior class led by Carly Turner, Avan Beiswanger and Karly Kirkpatrick are both capable of contributing on both ends and Kirkpatrick’s defense can be smothering.
The Panthers rematch with East Noble in the first round is an interesting one. They can play even with East Noble and if they stay out of foul trouble, they could bounce by the Knights. Payton Gorman is a great pure athlete and Marqueisha Weeks is too tough to rebound against when she is at her best.
A big win over Huntington North last week gives DeKalb a little momentum. Maddie Hickman is shooting 57 percent from the field and that is one of their few bright spots in a season at the bottom of the NE8.
NORTH SIDE (1-20)
There hasn’t been much solid footing for the Legends in their first year under Michael Wallace. Unless there is a miracle run, this will be their worst season since going 1-21 in 2015. Sumiyha and Jasmine Chambers are going not be leaned on very heavily.
Sectional 6 at East Noble Schedule
Tuesday, Feb. 4
Northrop vs. North Side, 6 p.m.
Snider vs. East Noble, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 7
DeKalb vs. Northrop/North Side winner, 6 p.m.
Carroll vs. Snider/East Noble winner, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 8: Finals, 7:30 p.m.
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