Last week saw quite a few teams from around the state participate in a number of holiday tournaments and one-day showcases, while other teams took the week to practice and celebrate the season. Even with fewer opportunities last week, there were several notable performers in Hoosierland.

Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian Junior Caleb Furst, New Palestine Senior Maximus Gizzi, South Decatur Senior Dominic Walters, Homestead Senior Sydney Graber, Garrett Freshman Bailey Kelham, Northwestern Senior Madison Layden, Hamilton Southeastern Senior Sydney Parrish, and Trinity Lutheran Freshman Bailey Tabeling were selected as recipients for the week of Dec. 23-Dec. 28 in the recognition program coordinated by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association.

Furst is the boys’ winner in District-1, while Graber and Kelham share District-1 girls’ honors. Gizzi is the boy’s recipient in District-2, while Layden and Parrish are co-recipients for the girls in District-2. Walters earns the boys’ award and Tabeling earns the girls’ award for District-3.

Blackhawk Christian’s Caleb Furst had a consistent week, helping his Braves to three wins in two days to take home the Noblesville Holiday Tournament championship. In their opening round, 67-56 win over previously unbeaten Chesterton, Furst scored 22 points, grabbed seven rebounds, handed out five assists, plus he blocked a pair of shots.

In Saturday’s twin bill, the 6-9 front-liner was much more dominant on the boards. In an 84-75 morning win against Northridge, Furst scored 17 points while collecting 15 caroms. He added three assists in the effort. In the championship game, a 62-59 victory against Columbus North, Furst scored 22 points, grabbed 19 rebounds, dished out six assists, and blocked four shots to help the Braves win the title.

Homestead’s Sydney Graber has been on fire all season long, and last week she helped the Spartans to three wins in two days, claiming their fourth Summit Athletic Conference tournament championship in the five years they have been a member of the league. Friday, in a lopsided win against Fort Wayne Snider, Graber scored an easy 23 points in limited minutes.

Saturday saw stiffer competition, as Homestead had to grind out a 44-38 victory over a feisty Fort Wayne Luers group. In that contest, the 6-1 forward scored 21 of their 44 points and added 11 rebounds. In the title contest, the Central Michigan University signee nearly posted another double-double, contributing 17 points and nine rebounds in the 52-43 win against the Fort Wayne South Side Archers. Graber has helped the Spartans to a 12-1 start, with their only loss being by two points to one of Ohio’s best teams.

Sharing District-1 girls’ honors, Garrett Freshman Bailey Kelham has had an outstanding start to her career. Last Monday, in their only game of the week, the 5-8 wing poured in 45 points, as they doubled up New Haven 82-41. Kelham was spectacular, knocking down 17 of her 28 field goal attempts, while going 4-7 from 3-point range and 7-7 from the free throw line. She also managed to add three rebounds, five steals, and a blocked shot, plus she set the program’s single-game record for points.

New Palestine Senior Maximus Gizzi likely got a good night’s rest Saturday night, following the Dragons four games in two days. Friday, they took on a strong Fishers squad, falling 74-55. In that game, Maximus was a solid 9-14 from the field, scoring 22 points, grabbing three rebounds, and handing out three assists. Later that day, they returned to defeat Scottsburg 71-59. The 6-1 guard had a strong outing with 28 points, six rebounds, four assists, and four steals.

On Saturday, New Palestine fell 61-47 at the hands of Bloomington North. But in his lowest output of the week, Gizzi still managed 20 points, while adding a pair of rebounds and three assists. The Marian University signee responded in his final game of the weekend, scoring 29 points on 10-18 shooting, including 6-12 from downtown. He grabbed four more rebounds and handed out four more assists in the evening tilt, a 70-55 loss at Bedford North Lawrence.

District-2 saw some records fall, courtesy of each co-winner. Northwestern Senior Madison Layden helped the Tigers to the Columbus North Invitational crown with three wins in two days. In Friday’s action, Northwestern knocked off Westfield 67-40. Layden posted a double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds, plus she added five assists and four steals in the win.

Saturday saw Northwestern defeat Mooresville and Elkhart Central with relative ease to earn the title. In the first game against Mooresville, the 6-1 wing went for an impressive 40 points, while also contributing five rebounds, seven assists, and five steals in the contest. With those 40 points, she became Howard County’s all-time scoring leader. Goose Ligon set the previous boys’ record of 1,900 points back in the 1960s, while Tiffany Longworth (1,936 points) set the previous girls’ record in 1993. Layden, a Purdue University signee, then scored another 24 points in the championship game, to give her 1,986 for her career. She recorded another double-double, handing out 10 assists Saturday evening.

Hamilton Southeastern’s Sydney Parrish had a record-setting weekend as well. Friday, the Royals took on Henderson County High School from Kentucky, winning a tightly contested game 53-44. In the win, the University of Oregon signee scored 25 points and grabbed nine rebounds.
Saturday, Parrish helped lead the Royals to a 62-51 win over Springboro High School, Ohio’s No. 7 ranked team. In that victory, the 6-2 wing scored 35 points, passing Zach Gunn’s school record of 1,657 career points. Parrish is now Hamilton Southeastern’s all-time scoring leader, regardless of gender, with 1,679 points. She also added eight rebounds and three steals in the big win. On the weekend, Parrish was 19-37 from the field and 16-17 from the free throw line.

South Decatur Senior Dominic Walters stuffed the stat sheet last week, posting a pair of double-doubles and helping the Cougars to three wins, the Edinburgh Tournament championship, and a 10-0 start to the season. In the first of two games Friday, Walters began his weekend with a 35-point outburst, highlighted by his 6-11 shooting from 3-point range and his 13-24 shooting overall. He also contributed five rebounds, seven assists, and a steal in the 93-86 win against North White.

In South Decatur’s second game Friday, the 6-0 guard knocked down five more 3-pointers on his way to another 26 points. He dished out 11 assists, grabbed seven rebounds, and picked up five steals in a thrilling 115-105 win against Hagerstown. On Saturday, in the finale, Walters was only able to manage 12 points this time, but he assisted on 14 of the team’s other made baskets, as the Cougars defeated Jac-Cen-Del in easy fashion, 94-66. Walters added five rebounds in the championship game.

Trinity Lutheran Freshman Bailey Tabeling is making her second appearance as a weekly winner, following an impressive four games over the weekend at the Toby Yoho Classic tournament at Eastern Greene High School. She was just getting warmed up in their opening round game, an easy win against Clay City. She knocked down 8-11 field goal attempts and 3-5 from 3-point range, as she scored 19 points in limited minutes. She added five rebounds, three assists, and five steals in the contest. Later that day, the Cougars returned to defeat a solid Owen Valley squad 53-35. In that win, Tabeling scored 22 points, grabbed three rebounds, handed out five assists, and collected six steals.

On Saturday, Trinity Lutheran knocked off Edgewood 60-55 in a close semifinal matchup. There, the 5-9 wing was most impressive, going 10-14 from the field, 5-7 from 3-point range, and 7-9 from the free throw line. She finished with 32 points, six rebounds, and three assists, as the Cougars advanced to the championship game. Brownstown Central proved to be a bit too much for Trinity Lutheran, beating the Cougars in a close one, 49-44. Tabeling was again solid, scoring 21 points and grabbing four rebounds. She currently leads all Freshmen in scoring this season, with a 23.0 point per game average.

This is the 12th season for the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association Player of the Week program, and the eighth season it is presented by Subway Restaurants of Indiana, a banner sponsor of the IBCA. Subway, in its eighth season as an IBCA sponsor, encourages athletes to “train hard and eat fresh”.

Other Top Nominees for Week-8 (2019-20)

District-1 Boys: Robert Allen, South Bend Clay; Jake Friel, Hebron; Will Geiger, Norwell; Zach Hubartt, Huntington North; Jalen Jackson, Fort Wayne Carroll; Hayden Jones, East Noble; Christopher Mantis, Lowell; Carson Rich, Southwood; Keon Thompson, Merrillville; Demarcus Vaughn, South Bend Washington.

District-1 Girls: Nyla Asad, LaPorte; Trinity Barnes, Gary Lighthouse CPA; Courtney Blakely, Hammond Bishop Noll; Jaci Jones, Fort Wayne South Side; Remi Jordan, Knox; Bailey Keim, North Miami; Maddy Payne, NorthWood; Makaya Porter, Elkhart Central; Mila Reynolds, South Bend Washington; TiAuna White, Fort Wayne Northrop.

District-2 Boys: Jajuan Allison, Beech Grove; Luke Brown, Blackford; Dre Davis, Lawrence Central; Noah Hedrick, Covenant Christian (Indianapolis); William Keno, Indianapolis Metropolitan; Bernie McGuiness, Guerin Catholic; Edreece Redmond, Bishop Chatard; Cale Robertson, North White; Kyle Thomas, Cloverdale; Victor Young, Muncie Central.

District-2 Girls: Kate Clarke, Carmel; Ella Collier, Danville Community; Maddi Fulks, Bethesda Christian; Sydney Jacobsen, West Lafayette Harrison; Kenna Kirby, Tri-West; Johwen McKim, Eastbrook; Katey Richason, Zionsville Community; Ashlynn Shade, Noblesville; Lindsey Syrek, University; Alana Vinson, Roncalli.

District-3 Boys: Brayton Bailey, Bedford North Lawrence; Drew Byerly, Franklin Community; Tre Coleman, Jeffersonville; Logan Hinton, Hagerstown; Trey Kaufman, Silver Creek; Hagen Knepp, Barr-Reeve; Lane Lauderbaugh, South Decatur; Josiah Ricketts, North Posey; Blake Sisley, Heritage Hills; Andrew Welage, Greensburg.

District-3 Girls: Natalie Boesing, Our Lady of Providence; Darrian Carmean, Vincennes Lincoln; Maya Chandler, Triton Central; Jocelyn Cox, North Central (Farmersburg); Brooke Jackson, Mount Vernon (Posey); Kaliah Neighbors, Evansville North; Graycie Poe, North Knox; Isabella Reed, Greenwood Christian; Gracie Shorter, Sullivan; Taylor Singer, Gibson Southern.