Sports News

Tippecanoe Valley's Nolan Cumberland named IBCA/Franciscan Health Players of the Week

This week begins the IHSAA State Tournament for all of the girls’ teams around the state; however, last week belonged to one guy in particular who nearly scored 100 points in his first two games of the week combined. There was also a 22-rebound performance and a near triple-double, as the ladies wrapped up their regular season.


Six players from around the state have been selected as Week-13 IBCA/Franciscan Health Players of the Week, one boy and one girl from each of the three districts.


Tippecanoe Valley Senior Nolan Cumberland, Yorktown Senior A.J. Dunn, Brownstown Central Junior Jack Benter, Columbia City Sophomore Addison Baxter, West Lafayette Junior Adrianne Tolen, and Owen Valley Senior Reagan Martin have been selected as winners for Jan. 23-Jan. 28 in the recognition program coordinated by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association.


Cumberland is the boys’ recipient, while Baxter is the girls’ recipient in District 1. Dunn and Tolen are the boys’ and girls’ winners, respectively, in District 2. Benter takes home boys’ honors, and Martin takes home girls’ honors in District 3.


The Vikings of Tippecanoe Valley picked up a pair of victories last week, including a tight 50-46 win against South Bend Riley, and a big 59-57 Three Rivers Conference win on the road at Manchester. Senior Nolan Cumberland was instrumental in both outcomes. The 6-3 guard scored 26 points on 10-15 shooting against Riley, while also grabbing four rebounds in that win. In the triumph over Manchester, Cumberland went for 28 points on a 12-23 shooting performance, plus he snagged another six rebounds, helping the Vikings push their record to 13-3 overall and 5-1 in the conference.


Columbia City Sophomore Addison Baxter helped the Eagles finish their regular season with a pair of wins last week. In a huge non-conference matchup against a very good Fort Wayne Northrop team, the 5-9 guard nearly posted a triple-double with her 21 points, nine rebounds, and 10 assists, plus she added five steals in the 73-69 road win. Then over the weekend, Baxter helped Columbia City secure the Northeast 8 Conference title with a perfect 7-0 record in an easy win against New Haven. This time out, she scored 24 points, grabbed eight rebounds, handed out five assists, and collected a pair of steals. Columbia City is now 20-2 on the season.


The Yorktown Tigers went 2-1 last week, nearly making it a perfect 3-0, all against good competition. They first defeated a solid Winchester squad, 56-45. Then, in a Hoosier Heritage Conference matchup at New Palestine, they fell to the 15-1 Dragons by a slim 60-53 margin. Yorktown finished their week with a nice 67-60 win against Fort Wayne Carroll. Senior A.J. Dunn was a key contributor each time out for the Tigers. Against Winchester, the 6-2 guard scored 23 points, grabbed four rebounds, and dished out five assists. At New Palestine, he added 21 points six rebounds, and a pair of assists. But he saved his best for last when they hosted Carroll, scoring 33 points on 11-19 shooting, he posted a double-double with his 13 rebounds, and he distributed another three assists in the win.


Junior Adrianne Tolen has been strong all season for the West Lafayette Red Devils, and she finished her regular season with a pair of nice games against McCutcheon and West Lafayette Harrison. In a comfortable win at McCutcheon, the 5-10 wing scored 27 points, snagged seven caroms, and assisted on a pair of teammates’ baskets. She came back two days later against a good Harrison team, helping the Lady Red Devils to a 59-51 road success. Tolen scored 25 points, grabbed eight more rebounds, handed out four assists, and collected four thefts as well. West Lafayette enters Sectional play with an 18-5 record.


Brownstown Central Junior Jack Benter shot lights-out last week, setting a school record in one game, then setting it again in the very next game. Overall, the Braves won four games, all Mid-Southern Conference games, against Silver Creek (85-74), at Austin (81-45), against Charlestown (81-42), and against Corydon Central (84-53). In the Silver Creek game, the 6-5 guard scored a school record 48 points on 15-26 shooting, including 5-12 from deep, and 13-14 from the charity stripe. He chipped in four rebounds and four assists as well. In the very next game at Austin, the Purdue University commit topped that effort with 51 points on 17-32 from the field, 8-15 from outside, and 9-11 from the free throw line. He posted a double-double with 12 rebounds against Austin, plus he added two assists and four steals.


The Owen Valley Lady Patriots finished their regular season with a nice 51-36 win against White River Valley, giving them 11 wins on the year thus far. 6-0 forward Reagan Martin was outstanding, as the Senior scored 31 points and grabbed 22 rebounds, six of which were at the offensive end of the floor. She also knocked down four 3-pointers on the evening, she blocked four shots, and she handed out a pair of assists. The Lady Patriots begin their postseason play tomorrow night against Indian Creek.


This is the 15th season for the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association Player of the Week program, but just the third season it is being 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 the Monday following the IHSAA Girls State Finals. Boys winners will be chosen through the Monday following the IHSAA Boys State Finals.