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NRRaider2001

NLC 2017 - Girls Basketball

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Should be another fun year for NLC Girls Hoops.  Several story lines I'm interested in following as the season progresses.

2016/17 Standings:

  1. Northridge 7-0 | 28-2
  2. Memorial  5-2 | 13-10
  3. Warsaw  5-2 | 20-4
  4. Wawasee 4-3 | 10-13
  5. Northwood 4-3 | 16-10
  6. Plymouth 2-5 | 13-10
  7. Goshen 1-6 | 8-15
  8. Concord 0-7 | 4-19

Warsaw and Goshen both have new coaches this year, as Lenny Krebs left the Redhawks for Warsaw after coaching for years in Goshen.  Memorial has a new coach as well after Steve Scott left.

Concord and Wawasee both had new coaches last year, both are back this year hoping to improve in year 2.

Sectional alignments are a bit different this year, with Penn hosting Sectional 3 and Concord hosting Sectional 4 this year.

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I believe it will come down to Northridge, Warsaw, and Northwood battling for the NLC this year, but am interested in hearing some input from others, any thoughts on the Lady Tigers this year @NLCTigerFan07?

Northridge lost 4 senior starters from last years Semi State runner up team, but I could see another 20+ win season for the Raiders. 

We return our schools all time scoring leader Brooke McKinley (GVSU commit) as well as our #1 player from off the bench last year Morgan Litwiller.

In the 71 to 40 win on Saturday against South Bend Washington, Brooke scored 12 points and Morgan had 28 (+16 rebounds).  Much like last year, I don't think we will rely on 1 or 2 players to carry the weight of the team, and a lot of underclassmen got some really good game experience.

This Thursday we travel down to Ft. Wayne for a rematch of last years Semi State against Homestead.

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I also believe Fairfield is going to be a tough team to beat in our area (of course Penn and St. Joe too).  @Fairfield02 any thoughts on the girls down in Benton this season?

Edited by NRRaider2001

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We're not very big, but we have aggressive and athletic girls.  I don't think we'll be able to hang with Ridge, but i could definitely see us winning 16 or 17 games. 

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7 minutes ago, Fairfield02 said:

We're not very big, but we have aggressive and athletic girls.  I don't think we'll be able to hang with Ridge, but i could definitely see us winning 16 or 17 games. 

I would guess you're not too far off on your record prediction, we aren't overly tall either, a couple of 6'2" girls, one of which is a freshman.

Like Fairfield, we are very aggressive and athletic, and tend to spread the ball out quite a bit.  Last year we had a stretch of games where we had different top scorers each night for quite a while...I could see a similar situation this year.

I believe we will play you guys and Angola in the NECC/NLC Tournament....our schedule is pretty brutal this year, with 3 or more tournaments, playing several back to back games the same day.

Edited by NRRaider2001

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20 hours ago, NRRaider2001 said:

I believe it will come down to Northridge, Warsaw, and Northwood battling for the NLC this year, but am interested in hearing some input from others, any thoughts on the Lady Tigers this year @NLCTigerFan07?

I honestly have low expectations for the Lady Tigers this season.  New head coach and coaching staff.  With no disrespect to Coach Krebs who seems like a great guy and has brought some good energy to the program and community, he has a .426 winning percentage in 14 seasons.  All 5 starters will be replaced.  Last year, all 6 seniors who graduated accounted for 974 of the 1,192 points (82%) scored.  Granted, the JV team was very good last year, but that seems to be the norm for most of the Tiger athletics programs.  We'll see JV and Freshmen teams be extremely successful, and then when it comes to Varsity competition it fluctuates.

It's only 1 game, but the Lady Tigers lost on Saturday to FW Bishop Luers 42-30 and only managed to score 10 points in the 2nd half.  The Lady Tigers beat Luers (who went 7-16) last year 63-50.  The Manchester game should be a good one tonight, as they are 2-0 on the young season but haven't played and probably won't play a team like Warsaw all season.

Without knowing too much about the rest of the NLC and just basing it off last season and history of the programs, I'd have to say Warsaw finishes 3rd behind Northridge and NorthWood this season, and could even be 4th or worse depending on what is happening at Plymouth, Memorial and Wawasee.  

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Appreciate the reply, I always enjoy your insight when it comes to the Tigers/Lady Tigers.

I'd be interested in hearing everyone's thoughts/observations on low participation numbers in Girls Basketball, NLC or not. 

I saw a few days ago that our JV game against Oregon Davis on the 11th has been cancelled, and while we had a full bench of players during our JV game against Washington, they had exactly 5 players.  Unfortunately for Washington, it reflected on the scoreboard as we won by almost 60 points, allowing them to only score 10.

 

Ken Fox at the Elkhart Truth published an article earlier today regarding dwindling numbers for Girls Basketball in our area.

"Through the month of October and into the past week, the reports have trickled in about schools not having enough players to field a junior varsity team.Marian, Jimtown, Bremen and Oregon-Davis are the schools that I know for sure will be playing varsity-only seasons, while Elkhart Memorial will not have a freshman team.

The 2017-18 Jimtown roster for first-year coach Alicia Harkins includes just freshman and sophomores on the varsity – not one upperclassmen. This coming barely 10 years after coach Gene Johnson led the 2006-07 Jimmies to the Class 2A title game."

 

Meanwhile Northridge is seeing more participation in Girls Basketball than ever before.

"Northridge has won the Northern Lakes Conference title the last two years and during the 2016-17 season, coach Doug Springer's team won both the Class 4A sectional and regional, before losing to eventual state champion Homestead at the Crown Point Semistate.

Springer had 36 players at tryouts this fall and kept 28, giving Northridge a full freshman, JV and varsity team.

"I really think it's about commitment,'' Springer said. "Basketball is a physically and mentally demanding sport and to be good, you have to put time in during the off-season and that time is not just 20 minutes here and 20 minutes there. Our kids lived in the gym in the summer.''

Springer has also worked hard in his 11 years at the school to bring a strong basketball culture to his program.

During the Goshen Sectional last February, as the Northridge staring lineup was announced, each player went across the floor and slapped hands with future Raiders coming up through the elementary and junior high programs.

You know that made an impression.

"(All-Stater) Brooke McKinley was running skills camps for the little girls this summer and our underclassmen were there helping her,'' Springer said. "Those younger girls are seeing the time, effort and commitment to getting better at the game of basketball. I also think there is a culture that has to be built to get the kids to want to participate.''"

 

Last Saturday at the game, our players slapped hands with the youth girls as well, fwiw.

Also Brooke McKinley officially signed to play for Grand Valley State next year today!

1 hour ago, NLCTigerFan07 said:

I honestly have low expectations for the Lady Tigers this season.  New head coach and coaching staff.  With no disrespect to Coach Krebs who seems like a great guy and has brought some good energy to the program and community, he has a .426 winning percentage in 14 seasons.

I certainly understand your hesitation with the new hire, and you're right, he is a great guy, his parents are close personal friends of my family (his dad also married my ex wife and I, but I won't hold that against him lol)

I think he will have more success at Warsaw than he did at Goshen, but I'd imagine it will take until at least year 3 to really show up.

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20 hours ago, NRRaider2001 said:

I would guess you're not too far off on your record prediction, we aren't overly tall either, a couple of 6'2" girls, one of which is a freshman.

Like Fairfield, we are very aggressive and athletic, and tend to spread the ball out quite a bit.  Last year we had a stretch of games where we had different top scorers each night for quite a while...I could see a similar situation this year.

I believe we will play you guys and Angola in the NECC/NLC Tournament....our schedule is pretty brutal this year, with 3 or more tournaments, playing several back to back games the same day.

I rthink we have a girl that is 6'2" and one that is 5'11"....everyone else is 5'9" or smaller.

We have started 3-0 so far, so that's a positive.

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I'll be making the hour and a half drive down to defending state champ Homestead tonight to root on the Lady Raiders......Harrell has us as 25 point underdogs, I don't see it happening, but we'll see....they lost a bunch of seniors and are a completely different team. 

I believe 3 of their grad's from last year are playing D1 ball this year, including Miss Basketball Karissa McGlaughlin who is now a Lady Boilermaker.

Although I did read they have picked up a really good transfer student this year from another Ft. Wayne school.

Excited to watch some great basketball, not so excited to drive an hour and a half home after the game!

 

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On 11/9/2017 at 2:27 PM, NRRaider2001 said:

I'll be making the hour and a half drive down to defending state champ Homestead tonight to root on the Lady Raiders......Harrell has us as 25 point underdogs, I don't see it happening, but we'll see....they lost a bunch of seniors and are a completely different team. 

I believe 3 of their grad's from last year are playing D1 ball this year, including Miss Basketball Karissa McGlaughlin who is now a Lady Boilermaker.

Although I did read they have picked up a really good transfer student this year from another Ft. Wayne school.

Excited to watch some great basketball, not so excited to drive an hour and a half home after the game!

 

Northridge lost last Thursday at 4A #9 Homestead 67 to 37.  I was really off, thinking that we could keep it close after they lost some big stars.  Their transfer from Concordia this year looks to be the real deal, especially beyond the arc.

Northridge went to 1A #12 Oregon Davis on Saturday, and came home with a 48-37 win.

Mogran Litwiller led the Raiders in game 1 against SB Washington with 28 points and 16 rebounds, but Brooke McKinley has been the scoring leader the last two games for the Raiders.  Shes about 200 points away from becoming a 1000 point scorer on her High School career.

This Saturday Northridge continues it's back and forth schedule across the State of Indiana and will be playing back to back games on Saturday at the Crown Point Classic, the same gym they played Homestead at in Semi State last year.

Northridge and Crown Point face off at 1pm immediately followed by Northridge and Merrillville, a rematch from the Laporte Regional Championship last year where Northridge won 55 to 45, winning their 28th game of the season.

Coach Springer has really stressed these in season tournaments and making our schedule as tough as possible to better prepare for the post season.

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22 minutes ago, NRRaider2001 said:

Northridge and Crown Point face off at 1pm immediately followed by Northridge and Merrillville, a rematch from the Laporte Regional Championship last year where Northridge won 55 to 45, winning their 28th game of the season.

I had to check this because I didn't think there was any way they would legitimately play back to back games immediately!  But it might as well be that!  That's shocking.  Basically an hour or so break between the end of their game against Crown Point (probably around 3-ish) and tipoff versus Merrillville at 4pm.  Wow.

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10 minutes ago, NLCTigerFan07 said:

I had to check this because I didn't think there was any way they would legitimately play back to back games immediately!  But it might as well be that!  That's shocking.  Basically an hour or so break between the end of their game against Crown Point (probably around 3-ish) and tipoff versus Merrillville at 4pm.  Wow.

I know right!  we have a similar situation the following week in the NECC/NLC matchup as well!

edit:  scratch that, our first game on the 25th is at 11:45 our next doesn't start until 4:45

Edited by NRRaider2001

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