Tag Archives: Class 3A

IHSBCA coaches give opinions on IHSAA class baseball, tournament format

By STEVE KRAH
http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Has it really been a generation since Indiana widely adopted high school class sports?
Of course there were classes in football going back to the 1970s, but check the records and you will find that 1996-97 (when Jasper outlasted Carmel 10-8 for the IHSAA baseball championship) was the last year that other sports were in the all-comers category at state tournament time.
With the COVID-19 pandemic taking away the 2020 spring season, that makes 2023 the 25th year of class baseball in the Hoosier State.
In the multi-class era, 56 different schools have won state baseball championships.
Of that number, only Jasper, LaPorte and Penn earned titles prior to 1997-98.
There are 22 schools with multiple state runner-up finishes. That accounts for 60 red ribbons — all but 12 coming from 1997-98 forward.
Noting that some schools came about in recent years because of consolidation, unification or other reasons, those that won their first sectional championship during the multi-class era include 4A’s Elkhart (2021), Evansville Harrison (1999), Fishers (2017), Fort Wayne South Side (2012) and Michigan City (2002), 3A’s Angola (1999), Charlestown (1999) and Hamilton Heights (2006), 2A’s Austin (2002), Central Noble (2009), Clinton Central (2005), Covenant Christian of Indianapolis (2008), Delphi (2008), Fairfield (1998), Hanover Central (2011), Heritage Christian (2005), Illiana Christian (2022), Lewis Cass (2000), North Decatur (2011), Parke Heritage (2021), Sheridan (2004), South Knox (2004), Southwestern of Hanover (1999), Southwood (1999), Taylor (1998), Triton Central (2003), Whitko (2017) and Woodlan (2005) and 1A’s Argos (1998), Bethesda Christian (2008), Caston (2012), Christian Academy of Indiana (2004), Cowan (2004), Daleville (1999), Edinburgh (2009), Elkhart Christian (2013), Eminence (2005), Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian (2001), Fort Wayne Canterbury (2009), Greenwood Christian (2014), Hauser (2004), Henryville (1999), Indianapolis Lutheran (2017), Kouts (1998), Marquette Catholic (2002), Milan (1999), Monroe Central (2001), Morgan Township (2004), Morristown (1998), New Washington (1998), Northeast Dubois (1998), North Miami (2019), Oldenburg Academy (2003), Park Tudor (1998), Pioneer (2016), Randolph Southern (2010), Rising Sun (2002), Seton Catholic (2011), South Central of Elizabeth (2005), Southwestern of Shelbyville (1999), Tecumseh (2000), Traders Point Christian (2021), Trinity Lutheran (2009), Triton (2000), Washington Township (1999), Union City (2012), University (2012), Waldron (2001), West Washington (2021), White River Valley (2017) and Whiting (2008).
A quarter century in, there are still plenty of opinions in the Indiana high school baseball community about the system.
These questions were posed to several coaches around Indiana:

  • Is class baseball a positive or a negative?
  • Who benefits the most from class baseball?
  • If you could change anything about class baseball what would that be?
  • Anything else you’d like to say on the subject?

Some of the responses:

BRIAN ABBOTT (Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association Executive Director and IHSBCA Hall of Famer)

“(Class baseball) is a positive. It has allowed schools of all sizes to be recognized and have some success at the state level while increasing fan interest in our sport. The players and the communities truly benefit the most from class baseball, in my opinion.
“The IHSAA does a great job of administering the state tournament and ending each year at Victory Field allows our sport to be showcased on a big stage! However, the tournament format itself needs to be addressed, especially at the sectional level, and we can’t continue in a ‘one size fits all’ cookie-cutter format. Our sport is different than others and our tournament format needs to reflect that. Seeding, success factor, and travel also need to be looked at in light of the fact(s) that class sports are here to stay and there are geographical constraints/factors based on the location of the school(s).
“Baseball in general is changing for the better in Indiana … the IHSBCA and the IHSAA need to continue to work together on formats/philosophies/participation guidelines that foster growth in our sport and develop a mutual relationship where everyone’s input is valued. We, the IHSBCA, have several ideas to share about the state tournament format/setup and how we can better grow our sport, in general. We are all stronger when we are working together and my goal as the Executive Director is to help facilitate positive changes that will grow our sport and unify our coaches at the same time.”

DAN AMBROSE (Heritage Christian head coach)

“(Class baseball) is a positive.
“I assume that smaller schools are more likely to benefit so they play teams that are more competitive. 
“I would support adding a fifth ‘super class’ of the largest schools and then balance the rest of the four classes.”

PATRICK ANTONE (Former Boone Grove and Columbus North and current Roncalli head coach)

“Class baseball is definitely a positive thing. It levels the playing field for teams when it comes to player depth and facilities. 
“For example, a school with an enrollment of 2,200 has a lot more players to work with and pull from than a school with an enrollment of 300. Both teams can be good and have good players, but the bigger school is very likely going to have more depth. The smaller school is likely to have one really good pitcher where the bigger school is likely to have two, or even three really good pitchers. As a result, the bigger school would have a big advantage in the sectional and regional.
“The other way it levels the playing field is when it comes to facilities. Bigger schools tend to have nicer facilities to train and practice in during the off-season where some schools, usually the smaller ones, don’t have anything close to the facilities of larger schools. Many schools either can’t get access to the facilities they have during the off-season because other in-season teams are using them for practice or games, or they just don’t have the facilities or space period.
“It can put teams at a big competitive disadvantage when they can’t train or practice the way they want to and need to during the off-season, and I think class baseball helps in this regard because schools that have similar enrollments tend to have similar facilities. 
“Everyone benefits from class baseball. The smaller schools obviously because of what I mentioned in my previous answer to the first question, but also the larger schools. When you’re competing for anything, let alone a state championship, you want it to really mean something and be a challenge. It’s what competing is all about. It’s not going to mean as much when a school with an enrollment of 2,200 plus kids goes up against a school with an enrollment of 300 plus kids and beats them in a sectional or regional. They should be able to do that again referring back to what I mentioned in my previous answer to the first question.
“Not only would they win but they wouldn’t have to throw their No. 1 pitcher to do so and would have them available for the next game, where the smaller school would likely need to throw their best pitcher in that situation. And if they did win, do they have a pitcher that could compete and win against another team with a large enrollment…not likely.
“There are two things I would change about class baseball, and one of them is being talked about right now. First, I would seed the postseason. It’s frustrating when you have teams that have done really well during the regular season and they meet in the first or second round of the sectional, and there are teams that didn’t fair as well in the regular season getting a bye in the first round and/or playing another team that didn’t do as well in the early rounds.
“It’s something I feel wouldn’t be too difficult to do or set up and it would make the postseason better and provide even more meaning to the regular season. I like that everyone makes the postseason because you can have something happen with injuries and get a player back, or a team hasn’t quite figured things out yet but later in the year they do and are still in it.
“But, there needs to be something in place for teams that do better in the regular season. I think seeding the sectional would be really good for Indiana high school baseball.
“The other thing I would change is going from four classes to five classes. Again, for all the reasons I’ve mentioned previously. Many times there’s such a large gap between the teams in 4A. I think going to five classes would help this and it’s something the IHSBCA and IHSAA are talking about and looking into.
“The success factor has worked well and is set up well. How they have it set up is good and I think it’s accomplishing what they wanted it to.”

RYAN BERRYMAN (Former Northwestern and current Western head coach)

“There’s no doubt that class sports have provided more opportunities for athletes, coaches, schools, and communities by creating a level of fairness with classified state tournaments. I understand the traditional approach of one class and experienced it as a player as we advanced to the semistate finals as a small school (at Western) in ’93 and ’94. But as a coach, the class system allows for accomplished small school teams to aspire to be state champions instead of hoping to win a sectional in a one class system.
“All stakeholders of a school’s baseball program (benefit most from class baseball). Having ranked teams and winning championships builds a greater sense of tradition within communities and raises interest amongst school children, faculty, and administration. Players and coaches benefit from the sense of accomplishment by developing a highly competitive team within a post-season setting.
“I would make the tradition factor a four-year stay in an elevated class — not just two years. Those who are state champion caliber teams seem to continue to dominate the current landscape. Also, if a team moves up in class and wins a sectional, regional, etc., a system needs to be created to keep them in that class because they are showing the ability to compete.
“We need to restructure our tournament. Six-team sectionals and format need to be uniformed. Only the sectional final should be played on Memorial Day. We’d have two-team regionals, four-team semistates and seed the tournament.
“We are the only sport that, based on pitching restrictions (pitch counts and days rest) and may not have our best lineup on the field in a championship setting. Too many sectional championships are decided by Team 1’s ace dominating vs Team 2’s bullpen because of weather, graduation or the draw. Basketball will always have their point guard.”

DAVE BISCHOFF (IHSBCA Hall of Famer and New Haven head coach)

“There have been a lot of positives (with class baseball). There have been some very good smaller schools that have gotten the chance to experience state tourney runs that might not have happened in areas where there were perennial large school programs had too much depth for the smaller schools. I think that has been a good thing for Indiana high school baseball. 
“Small schools with open enrollments and the ability to reach out from beyond what would be considered a normal attendance area have done extremely well (in class baseball). This, however, is not entirely the fault of class sports. Open enrollment and increased club and travel athletic teams have opened up a whole different experience for high school athletes today.
“High school athletes are far more likely to travel further, meet and become friends with new teammates outside of their own school in the off-season and subsequently more likely to travel further away to attend a school of their choice. In a way I can’t blame them. Unfortunately, that choice often comes with a greater financial obligation and not all athletes and their families can afford to do so. Smaller schools have benefited in some areas directly. That’s not necessarily a criticism of the class sports, it’s the trend and we aren’t going to a one-class tourney.”

RYAN BUNNELL (Westfield head coach)

“Overall (class baseball) is a positive. At times, schools being up a class or down a class will dictate how successful they can be.
“The smaller schools probably benefit most (from class baseball). Winning a sectional would be a huge feat for a small school (during the one-class era). I know it was for us (at Northwestern) when we played in the sectional with Kokomo).
“There’s talk of the IHSAA going to a five-class system. I’d probably be in favor of that. If you’re going to do class might as well break it up a little more.
“How are sectionals are being distributed and seeding of the tournament would take much more priority over how many classes there are.
“Let’s set up a season where the regular season is more meaningful and the better teams are meeting at the end (with semistate- and state-caliber games at those stages rather than at the sectional level).
“I like the way Ohio (has seeded). The way I understand it, teams have been ranked off their MaxPreps ranking. Head coaches have a meeting. If you’re ranked No. 1 you pick your sectional. If you’re No. 2 you pick your sectional and you’re probably not going to put themselves in the same sectional as the No. 1 team.”

JAKE BURTON (IHSBCA Hall of Famer, former McCutcheon, North Newton and current Twin Lakes head coach)

“(On the positive side,) class baseball provides more kids, coaches, and communities an opportunity to be a state champion. (On the negative side,) prior to class baseball we were used to minimal travel. We’ve also lost the local rivalries because of class baseball. 
“Good smaller programs who were fundamentally sound yet they usually didn’t have the pitching to advance deep into the tournament (benefit most from class baseball).
“I would place all private schools into Class 4A or 2A. The success factor has helped every two years, but you still have those schools who dominate every two years they move down.
“I’ve coached at the 4A and 3A level and even though I am at a 3A school, I would still rather compete against local rivalry teams rather than class baseball. However, we will never return to a one class system and I understand why!”

MATTHEW CHERRY (Fishers head coach)

“Class baseball is a positive and helps balance the playing field. Since I’ve been coaching, I believe all but just a few schools that have made the State Finals in 4A are in the top 32 in enrollment in the state. 
“Baseball is a game where you are not always putting your best 9 or best team on the field depending on pitching rotation and availability of arms. 
“The larger enrollment typically means there are more available players trying out, which creates a greater opportunity to development quality depth in your pitching staff. That is one advantage that bigger schools have. So, the idea of class baseball helps to control some of the variables on both sides of the field. It is not perfect, but it is a way to try and help control some of the unique variables that are different in baseball than other sports.
“I believe the top half of each class benefits the most from class baseball, especially at the 3A and 4A levels because the range of enrollment is so much bigger from the smallest school to biggest school in those classes.  The range in enrollment in 1A and 2A is much closer from top to bottom. 
“I don’t really want to go down this path, but the private schools also benefit from class baseball, especially in 1A, 2A, and often 3A. Private schools are not limited to school district lines and are able to draw from a wider range of students compared to the smaller enrollment schools in 1A and 2A.
“Not really answering the question, but if I could change anything about the IHSAA tournament, I would make the regular season matter and seed the tournament (or at least seed the teams that feed into the regionals). 
“You might not be in the same sectional each year if you are seeded from the regional level. I would also create double-elimination rounds at the different levels (sectional, regional, etc.). Similar to the thought above that you are not always putting your best team on the field depending on pitcher availability, a double-elimination tournament would help to insure the best team advances and not just the team with the best pitcher and the best blind draw.
“Classes need to be set by a specific enrollment range and not try to keep every class the same size. I would add a fifth or even a sixth class and set the range for the enrollment so that each school in the class is close to the same enrollment size. If that means that one class only has 32 teams, another class has 48, another class has 64, and another class has 96, then that is what should be done and would help make the tournament as fair as possible.”

JOE DECKER (Silver Creek head coach)

“Overall (class baseball) is a positive. It has given a lot of smaller schools a chance to be successful and show some of these coaches at smaller schools can really coach.
“Smaller schools definitely benefit the most (from class baseball). Some of the teams that have won state championships would never make it out of their sectionals if we were one class.
Nothing against them but when schools have 2,000 students to pick from they are going to have a lot more athletes and in the sports that require more players like baseball and football that makes a big difference.
“(I favor putting) private schools in their own class. I think they have such a huge advantage. Not because they recruit or anything like that, but they tend to get the players that are more apt and able to do the extra things such as lessons, travel ball, etc.
“Overall (class) been good for sports in Indiana. I know Silver Creek has won three state championships in boys and girls basketball in the past four years and made we have made some long runs in baseball. Not sure we would have been able to do that in one class. If you ask any of those kids that were on the state championship team and I am sure they could care less whether it was one class or four.”

GREG DIKOS (IHSBCA Hall of Famer at Penn head coach)

“I have no issues with class baseball. I like competing against other schools my size because they have the same issues (positive and negative) that I have.
“(Class baseball) definitely helps the smaller schools being able to compete against other schools their own size.  
“Baseball is a sport where a dominant pitcher can have a great bearing on the game. I remember playing Bremen in the semistate in ’94. (John Glenn head coach) John Naldony has had some very good teams that can compete against larger schools.
“As far as changes, a double-elimination sectional would be interesting.  I am not sure if a five-class baseball system could accommodate that.”

BRIAN DUDLEY (IHSBCA Hall of Famer and Wapahani head coach)

“Wapahani is in favor of class sports. I believe it makes sports a more even playing field. We won the state in 2014 in 2A, that would not have happened if there was one class.
“Our girls volleyball just won state, which is a big deal for small communities, they lost to Yorktown twice and HSE (Class 4A finalists) all were sweeps and not really close.
“Even though our team in 2014 and our girls last week were very good, competing against the bigger schools in the tournament would be very difficult. That being said, our State Championships are still a very big deal for our community, school, and students.
“Therefore, class sports are a positive. As little league participation in small communities keep losing kids to travel ball and other activities small school numbers are seeing less kids playing baseball and softball unless they have a successful program which is a minority. 
“Small schools at least feel like they have a chance to win in the tournament and maybe even a state championship when they are playing schools close to their same size. Very few 1A or 2A teams can compete in the tournament with the bigger schools, once they realize that kids quit playing or go to another sport where they might have a chance to win. 
“The current format is fine for the tournament. Adding additional classes or a class would benefit big schools only in my opinion.
Four classes has been a success. Can you tweak things? Maybe. But why change if it is not broken?”

DAVE GINDER (Fort Wayne Carroll head coach)

“I like the one-class system but also know that class sports are not going anywhere so we can take the positives from it and live with it.
“It is probably the small class schools and communities that benefit the most as they typically have a greater opportunity to advance when playing similar size schools.
“Class sports are here to stay so one change I’d like to see for baseball would be the tournament run in some way that has a series feel to it as baseball is not a sport that is suited for a ‘one and done’ tournament.”

TERRY GOBERT (IHSBCA Hall of Famer and Jasper head coach)

“I’m fine with class sports but concerned about the impact of some private and parochial schools that seem to put great emphasis on athletic success which can make it difficult for public schools to compete on an annual basis.
“Class sports are here to stay but this situation and the number of transfers at public schools are the next challenges for the IHSAA.”

DAVE GOODMILLER (Norwell head coach)

“(Class baseball) is a positive. It has created more excitement for more schools and their fans. 
“Probably the smaller schools feel as if they have a better chance to experience sectional and regional championships than when it was one class. 
“The only drawback (in class baseb all) I could see is you may have farther travel but in your sectional pairings than when it was one class. When I played in the single class, your sectional would be more local. It would have teams of various sizes, but we seemed have greater rivalries because many times you played against those teams in the regular season or against those players in your summer leagues. 
“As a coach today, I want to play the best schools we can (no matter the size). I want to prepare ourselves for our conference and sectional. When I was a player, we wanted to be able to compete with Logansport, Kokomo, Marion and LaPorte. Today, we want to compete with Andrean, Jasper, Brebeuf and Southridge.”

KEVIN HANNON (Knox head coach)

“(Class baseball) is a positive. I witnessed first-hand what the state tournament does in small communities. The student-athletes have a more balanced playing field.
“The benefits go to the teams that advance the furthest in the tourney.  Without class baseball a 1A could defeat a 3A or 4A school in the tournament on a given day. However, in most cases those smaller schools don’t have the depth, especially with pitchers.
“We are at the point that we need to look at the number of classes. I would be in favor of adding a fifth class. The current disparity in school sizes is extremely large in the upper class. With the growth and addition of smaller, private schools, other mid-size schools are being bumped up.  
“The biggest problem facing our tournament currently is the number of schools in the sectionals. Host schools have roughly a week to host a sectional tournament. 
“Depending on your sectional, you could have anywhere from 5-8 teams in that sectional. Huge difference between five and eight. In a five-team sectional the winning team would have to win two or at most three games, and could possibly do that with two pitchers. In an eight-team sectional, the winning team would have to win three games and would possibly need three if not four pitchers in that 5-7 day window for the games.”

ERIK HISNER (Former Whitko and current Eastern of Greentown head coach and athletic director)

“(Class baseball) is a positive. It levels the playing field for all schools, especially the ones that are not in that top quarter or so.
“The smaller schools and even the medium-sized schools benefit the most.
“The thing that football did with the Top 32 (being in the largest or super class), I’d like to see that in the other sports. There are different things you could do with the other four (in a five-class system). You could divide it up evenly. There’s been discussion of capping 1A at 128. There’s a big discrepancy right now between the bottom of 4A and the top of 4A.
“(The Indiana Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association) has talked about running data and see how people would fall. There would not be (an) equal (amount of) schools in every class. We’re still in the process of gathering information. The IHSAA was at our last two athletic directors conferences and present for those discussions.”

JOHN HUEMMER (Mishawaka head coach)

“Class baseball will have a positive effect on high school baseball. I think that it levels the playing field for the state tournament. Also, having class baseball will allow more schools the opportunity to earn a state title just like with football’s six classes.   
“I believe that the smaller schools will benefit.”
“It would be fun to see all state title teams play in a small tournament to see who is the best of all of the classes.”
“Even with the change to class baseball, there are very good teams at each class level. It will still not be an easy road to get the opportunity to play at Victory Field.”

DENNIS KAS (IHSBCA Hall of Famer, former Clinton Prairie and Noblesville head coach and current Lafayette Jeff assistant coach)

“Had class sports been in place (when I was at Clinton Prairie) I may have never left. One of the things class sports does is that you can achieve everything positive you want to achieve from a goals standpoint.
“Class sports kind of levels the playing field during the state tournament.
I had some terrific teams back at Prairie. In five years, we won two sectionals.
“A disadvantage for class sports is that when you get to a bigger school like Noblesville there’s no ceiling on the enrollment.
“Believe it or not once we went to class sports Noblesville had the smallest enrollment in our sectional at 1,250 (Clinton Prairie was around 300).
“If I were at Clinton Prairie I’d welcome it as a smaller school. I might have one really good pitcher that could help me compete against anybody, but in most years would have a drop-off in pitching depth.
“At Noblesville — a larger school — I have the chance to have more depth.
In baseball it always comes down to pitching. You can be good in a lot of areas of the game. If you have a question on the mound you’re going to struggle.”

DARIN KAUFFMAN (Fairfield head coach)

There’s positives and negatives for everything, but it’s good for baseball to have class.
“If we expand to another class it’s going to be even better. It makes everyone feel like they have a chance. If you’ve got the right group of guys you can win.
“At the State Finals you see a difference between the 1A game and 4A game. The lineups are deeper at the bigger level. The 4A game is little more of a college game than a high school game.
“The smaller schools probably benefit more (in class baseball) than the bigger schools).
“In baseball, it’s how the pitching lines up.
“I like how Iowa does it. They don’t start baseball until the end of April and their tournament’s in July. I don’t know if that will ever happen here.”

JUSTIN KEEVER (Noblesville head coach)

“Class baseball is a positive (but classification should be addressed) … The number of schools in each class doesn’t need to be the same.
“Breakdown of each class needs to be more than an arbitrary enrollment number. There needs to be thought into why the lines of demarcation are made (spread, standard deviations, range). Athletic department size (percentage of the student body participating in each sport should be used for classes) could be used to determine classes.
“Many large schools have very small baseball programs. Some small schools have very large baseball programs in terms of numbers. The class system should be used to place a school into its appropriate level of competition, not just for the number of students that attend a school. There are many other variables to consider.”

KEVIN KINNISON (Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian head coach)

“I don’t know if (class baseball) is a positive or a negative per say. I played when there wasn’t any classes and I think the class system has taken away for the local rivalries. Now depending on your class and the location of your sectional, you may have to travel up to an hour to play in sectionals, although more teams have the opportunity to win a state championship, a win over a neighborhood rival might mean more, bragging rights.
“There are eight teams every year who have the opportunity to play in a state championship game so that’s a benefit (to class baseball). More players, coaches, and schools who have a chance to experience a state championship game.
“I’m not sure that I agree with the success factor movement (for all schools), aside from private schools you may be punishing kids who aren’t even in high school because current classes are winning. In small towns you may have a group of kids who all hit at once and then the next year they have nothing, those young men, in the current format are being punished for the success of prior classes.
“For me it comes down to the local excitement, the rivalries, the competition between kids who know each other, who’ve grown up playing each other since little league. That’s what’s I believe is missing with the class system. Coming from a coach at a small school I know that if there wasn’t a class system the likelihood of us winning a sectional would go down dramatically, but just think if we would ever knock off one of the local big boys, it would be remembered forever.”

BRIAN KIRCHOFF (Former Northeast Dubois head coach and current Jasper assistant coach)

“Overall you can’t make a real argument that (class baseball) is a negative. You’re putting more kids and more schools in successful situations. I get that part.
“We were fortunate enough to win eight sectionals (at Northeast Dubois) which wouldn’t have happened in single-class.
“That being said, I’m not sure its been a positive for small-school athletes as far as recognition goes (for all-star consideration or scholarships).
“The smaller schools were the target when this all started 25 years ago.”
“There are private schools that have it better than other private schools (some have thrived and others have had a hard time fielding a team).”

KYLE KRAEMER (Terre Haute South Vigo head coach)

“Class baseball is a positive for the most part. The obvious plus is that there are more ‘winners.’ The big negative in my opinion is that schools lose local rivalries. Pre-class era, we had great rivalries with all the local schools because you were going to potentially play one of them at the sectional or regional level. Those teams and games are now just another game on the schedule unfortunately, especially in my neck of the woods. 
“Terre Haute South and Terre Haute North are on a ‘big school island.’  We have to travel at least 50 miles to play another 4A baseball team.  It was much easier to have a rivalry with say a West Vigo, South Vermillion, Sullivan, etc. before class baseball because we would most likely see them in the state tournament. It is difficult to have a rivalry with a school that is located in or around the Indianapolis area.  
“The IHSAA can expand to five classes for baseball — that’s fine. But, in my opinion, the private schools need to have their own class/classes.”

BRIAN KUESTER (IHSBCA Hall of Famer and South Spencer head coach)

“I think class baseball has been positive even though I was a little skeptical when it first started.
“Class baseball probably benefits the smaller schools the most because it gives them a realistic chance in the tournament.
“The biggest thing that I think that could help class baseball would be looking at creating a separate parochial school class.”

DEAN LEHRMAN (Heritage head coach)

“Having been a high school football coach for 40 years and a head high school baseball coach for 45 years, I have seen the ‘evolution’ of class sports here. My connection to friends and relatives in neighboring Ohio and Michigan has also allowed me to ‘watch’ the evolution of class sports there. In my early years (1981), I was part of Leland Etzler’s Woodlan football staff that went to the Class A state championship game vs. Hamilton Southeastern. There were three classes of football at that time compared with the six we have now. The game was played outdoors in a blizzard on November 20, 1981 (the night before my wife and I were married). It was an awesome experience for everyone connected to the small town communities of Woodburn and Harlan, Indiana. That puts my vote on the positive side of class sports in general and class baseball in particular.
“In 2007, I was fortunate enough to be part of the Class 2A baseball championship game at Victory Field with my Heritage Patriots. We came up short to a powerhouse from South Spencer, but once again it was a tremendous experience for the communities of Monroeville and Hoagland.  Players, parents and fans were the biggest beneficiaries in both cases.
“I have seen point systems both here and in Ohio. I have seen other limited entry systems where not everyone gets to participate. I have seen ‘seeded’ systems (currently in Ohio) where top seeds are given regional choice and early round home games. Later rounds are played at ‘neutral’ sites. There are good and bad characteristics to all of these hybrid systems — depending on where you fall in the ‘rankings.’ I feel that things continue to evolve and therefore should only get better in the future — as long as we keep all kids in mind.”

PAT LOWREY (Lafayette Harrison head coach)

“I believe it to be positive for the student-athletes throughout the state as class baseball has provided opportunities for schools of all sizes to compete with more of a level playing field. Being at a smaller school for five years (Delphi) and now at a bigger school for the last 11 (Harrison), I have been lucky enough to see several outstanding programs and coaches at all levels. 
“While at Delphi, we were fortunate enough to advance to the 2010 2A state championship game. While I would like to say we’d compete well in a one-class system, the truth of the matter is, we would have struggled to compete against bigger schools in a two- or three-game sectional (or regional) due to the differences in depth of our roster in comparison to bigger schools. 
“At Harrison, we have been lucky enough to have several arms that we could run out in an elimination game. At Delphi, that number is quite smaller, which would have really hurt us if we were to play vs. bigger schools in a two- or three-game sectional (or regional). That is a huge competitive advantage for the larger schools and something that is beyond the control of smaller schools. When class baseball started, it provided schools of all sizes the ability to compete on a level playing field in each of the four classes.

CHRIS MAY (Gibson Southern head coach)

“I really see (class baseball) as a positive for the lower classes. Class A and AA have the opportunity to get a State Championship and not have to butt heads with the larger schools. In Class AAA and AAAA, there’s not as big a difference in talent.”

ANDY MCCLAIN (Former Brebeuf Jesuit, Norwell and Lawrence Central and current Indianapolis North Central head coach)

“Class baseball is both positive and negative in my mind. You lose some of the regional rivalries although you could still play local/smaller and larger teams on your regular season schedule. We certainly have more sectional champions and more kids are able to enjoy success playing baseball so that is a huge plus. It leaves more kids with positive experiences while in high school and playing our great game.
“I would have to think that the smaller schools benefit the most from class baseball with all respect to them. Our state has tremendous coaches and programs at all levels. Again the opportunity for kids at those schools to be able to compete in the state tournament and enjoy success is a great benefit.
“I’m not sure there is much to change for the better — possibly a Champions Tournament but on the flip side it may be rough to win a title and then turn around and possibly get beat. Basketball got away from it, obviously. Some schools have to travel quite a bit for sectional play, but again not sure if there is a way around that.
“Baseball at the 3A level on a whole rivals the baseball being played at 4A. Jasper and Andrean’s success when they bumped up is a testament.”

MARCUS MCCORMICK (Speedway head coach)

“As in other sports, classification was created to level the playing field keeping schools with similar enrollment sizes within the same bracket and to also create more winners per sport. 
Classification has added hope to teams who may otherwise not have it if they are put into a sectional with bigger schools.  To be perfectly honest most of the time the bigger schools just have access to more choices, such as players, facilities and money.  
“The smaller schools benefit the most from classification. It has allowed talent to grow and flourish, as having an opportunity to win a sectional breeds hope, which makes it easier to get kids out to play. 
“I would create a separate class for private schools, the advantage that they have can not be matched by the public school. I will say open enrollment has helped, but the private schools have distanced themselves a lot especially in baseball.  
“I like where we are at with baseball in the state of Indiana. The training facilities and opportunities that our kids have after high school has grown since I have been in the game the last 20 years.”

JEFF MCKEON (Former Plainfield and South Putnam head coach)

“I am somewhat of a traditionalist, so a single class had a little soft spot in my heart. That said, there are some benefits to a class system. The class system allows for: 1. More state winners, 2. A chance for smaller schools to compete at a high level, 3. It helps promote the game of baseball in the state.
“I would say the smaller schools and the schools that fall just under the class limits (benefit the most from class baseball). What I mean by that is if the top 101 enrollments go to 4A, school number 102 has an advantage because they are playing in 3A. The private schools also benefit from the class system.
“If we are to stay in the class system (which we will), I would say that for baseball there needs to be five classes instead of four.
“Another change I would enact would be to not separate by an equal number. If there are 400 schools, it doesn’t need to be 100 in each class of four. 
“A final change would be the success factor rule. The requirements need to be adjusted, mainly the length at which they must stay up a class should be longer.
“One thing that class baseball hurt (along with class basketball) was the community sectionals. I graduated in ’93 when it was still one class and I remember that all the sectionals in every sport were heavily-attended. The attendance has gone down in terms of sectionals.”

BLAKE MOLLENKOPF (Caston head coach)

“Class baseball is a positive thing, especially for schools with lower enrollment. It helps create a somewhat even playing field for tournament play. Class sports have allowed for multiple smaller enrollment schools to have teams thrive and have success that may not happen if class sports didn’t exist.
“Class baseball has allowed our kids to compete against schools of like enrollment. It has allowed our school to enjoy tournament success.  It has allowed our school and community to host sectional and regional tournaments, whereas without class sports, we may have not had these opportunities.   
“I understand the log jam in class sports that occurs at the 4A level, especially in larger city schools. Oftentimes top teams match up early in a tournament, which I am sure is frustrating for those programs.  
“Overall, class baseball has been a positive thing, especially from the Caston baseball programs perspective. We feel as though it provides parity for our kids, and it gives them a chance to be successful in tournament play. Like in any system, there are pros and cons, but our feel is this has more pros than cons for our student athletes.”

KEITH NUNLEY (Former Monroe Central and current Guerin Catholic head coach)

“(Class baseball) is positive overall
“Smaller schools who make runs (benefit most from class baseball). 
“Sectional and maybe even regional could be seeded.”

PAT O’NEIL (IHSBCA Hall of Famer, former Brownsburg and current Danville Community head coach)

“Class baseball is a positive thing. Teams get a chance to play vs comparable sized teams, better chance for success in state tourney.
“The lower classes (benefit most from class baseball) as they all have a legitimate chance for tourney success.
“My thoughts about change, which I presented to LaPorte AD, Ed Gilliland, over five years ago is this: All classes play their sectionals. Winners would then meet up in a demographic regional competing with those winners meeting in a four-team semi and finally in a final four State Championship tournament. I actually broke it down statewide with who goes where potentially each stage. This give each class a chance for a sectional title and a tourney overall state champion. I also put this idea for basketball as well.
“IHSBCA has done a tremendous job in supporting high school baseball. Baseball and basketball are sports where small schools can compete vs. larger schools. My format would appease all schools with a chance for a sectional trophy, but let’s see one overall state champion.”

JASON RAHN (Westview head coach)

“(Class baseball) is a positive.
“Smaller public schools definitely benefit the most from class ball.
“I don’t feel there is anything wrong with our classification system. There will always be some argument that private schools should perhaps have their own division.”

JOEL REINEBOLD (Former Bremen, South Bend Adams and current South Bend Clay head coach)

“I am from the group that favors the one-class system when it comes to the tournament. I think in baseball you can still be competitive with bigger schools if you are a smaller school.
“If you have four or five classes then you really don’t have a ‘state champion.’ You have four or five ‘state champions.’
“If you want a true state champion then, let the class winners compete against each other a week later and really come up with a ‘state champion.’ Until then, you just have ‘class champions.’”
“If you are going to have class state champions, why are big schools and little schools playing during the regular season?”

A.J. RISEDORPH (NorthWood head coach and dean of athletics)

“Class baseball is a positive thing. I would say I grew up as a traditionalist and loved the single-class basketball era; however, I’ve grown to appreciate the advantages/disadvantages that come with the size of schools.
“Classifying baseball is something that benefits all programs, schools and communities. At the end of the season, eight communities get to compete for the state title at an amazing stadium. Maybe that will soon expand to 10!
“I am excited to see the potential of a fifth class built into the state tournament. This would help create more balance among the classes once it is all said and done. It would be interesting to see how things would shake up if multipliers were given to various things like private/public schools, free/reduced percentages, etc. I’ve heard arguments for the success factor to be implemented differently as well. I am not sure it’s entirely fair that the success of graduated juniors and seniors determines the fate of the rising freshman and sophomores who were not directly a part of that success.
“I would love to see consistent sectional/regional alignments across as many team sports as possible. I feel this would enhance the rivalry aspect of the state tournament from a sectional/regional standpoint.”

RANDY ROBERTS (Washington Township head coach)

“For us, class baseball has certainly been a positive. Realistically we don’t have the manpower to compete in a tournament with the larger schools. It gives us something to shoot for, and a legitimate chance to win tournament championships. 
“All small schools benefit from class baseball. Even at the state tournament there is a very noticeable difference in the talent level between the class A game, and the Class AA game. Larger schools have 4-5 times more kids try out for their team. Valpo has over a hundred, we typically get 20 boys out per season.”

GARY ROGERS (Former Fort Wayne Bishop Luers and current Leo head coach)

“(Class baseball) has been a real positive for high school baseball. Although every once in awhile you have a team you feel can compete in any class, the class system gives teams a level playing field on a more consistent basis.
“The kids and community benefit most (from class baseball). At the end of the day when you are a state champion, none of those kids or community identify as a class state champ, they identify as a state champion and the memories from that success.
“Baseball should be a double-elimination tournament in order to get a true team champion. A team can eliminate a really good team in a single-elimination tournament with a dominant pitcher.
“In 2008 we had Tyler Watts and Kevin Kiermaier get seen by the Parkland College coach because we had the opportunity to advance in the state tournament in Class 2A. They both went to Parkland and Kevin is having a pretty good major league career.”

SCOTT ROST (Former Elkhart Memorial and current Elkhart head coach)

“In our area, the vast majority of schools are 3A and 4A. I’m not sure it makes a ton of difference one way of the other. I’m sure for many small schools, (class baseball) provides some positive benefits.
“(Class baseball) is beneficial for some of the smaller schools that may not have a chance for success against bigger schools. 
“There should be other factors involved in the equation when classifying schools. You’re not always comparing apples to apples when you look at enrollment numbers. You can compare similar-sized schools and athletes in one district that do not necessarily have the same opportunities and resources that athletes in another district do.”

MARK SCHELLINGER (New Prairie head coach)

“(Class baseball is a) very positive thing. Enrollment is definitely not the only factor, but it does make a big difference. It’s not realistic to think that small schools can compete consistently with the higher enrollment schools. The depth that the larger schools have because of numbers and the in-team competition that brings gives them a major advantage. Larger schools often have more resources — including indoor facilities and more coaches that is also advantageous for them.
“The benefits from class baseball can be seen throughout all classes.  The idea is that schools are competing against similar schools is good for all.  
“I would actually like to see five classes. The descepancy between the biggest schools in 4A and the smaller schools in 4A is very large. We have schools with over 3,500 students competing against schools that have less than 1,500 students. That is a major difference that brings some big advantages for the larger schools.”

BRAD SCOTT (Rossville head coach)

“At Rossville, we benefit from class baseball. I cannot speak for any other coaches or programs but my guess is most would say that smaller schools and/or private schools benefit from the most. With that said, sectionals are generally aligned by geographical location so my guess is a 4A Sectional in the Indianapolis area might not see significant change if we had one class. I could be wrong though. 
“I would love to see baseball do something like basketball did for a short time with the Tournament of Champions. Baseball — unlike basketball or football — has what I consider to be an equalizer with pitching. It would be neat to see it played out. 
“I am a fan of the old school single-class system as well. I don’t know what it feels like winning a sectional in a single-class system and I do not want to undermine how special winning a sectional championship is. It is a great accomplishment and there is a great amount of pride felt from the program, school and community.
“With that said, I would think winning one in a single-class system would feel different for small schools because of the enrollment differences with the teams you would have to beat.”

CORY STONER (Jimtown head coach)

“Class baseball is a positive. It creates an opportunity for more competition across the board.
“Smaller schools with fewer arms benefit the most from class baseball. Larger schools with more pitchers only are at a great advantage over the smaller schools whose best position players are typically also their best arms and usually have far fewer pitcher-only type players.
“I would love to play three-game series in the postseason rather than the one-and-done model. I’m not sure it is even possible and have no idea how they could arrange it but I think it better fits baseball. You would get the better TEAMs winning sectionals as opposed to the team with the best arm or two winning them.”

STEVE STRAYER (IHSBCA Hall of Famer and Crown Point head coach)
 

“(Class baseball) is mostly positive. It gives hope for many of the smaller schools to earn a sectional, regional, semi-state ,and state championships. “The negative would be private schools seem to be earning most of these championships.
“Private schools (benefit most from class baseball). In the lower classes, private schools have been piling up the state championships. “I would like to have three classes of public schools and one or two classes of private schools.”

TIM TERRY (South Vermillion head coach and athletic director)

“I am old-fashioned, I began coaching when it was a one-class system. I liked the rivalries and going to the local areas to play the sectional games (playing at home or in Terre Haute or Brazil against Northview, Terre Haute North Vigo, Terre Haute South Vigo or West Vigo).
“The reason I bring it up, I felt that it was some Hoosier Hysteria in baseball. It was the local teams playing in a sectional and no one had to travel a great distance.


“It is a benefit for a smaller school to advance farther in the (class baseball) tournament. It takes away the big upsets, but more have a chance to reach the state.”

TED THOMPSON (Tecumseh head coach)

“Class sports has worked out to be a good thing for everyone involved.  The competitive nature of each class is relative and that gives everyone the opportunity to see different teams in different years be successful. 
“The smaller schools most definitely benefit the most due to the shear numbers that are limited they have to choose from. This allows them to compete against like size schools and provide a great experience for the athlete.

“I think the way the IHSAA has it set up is good and there’s not really much to change.”

CRAIG TROUT (Northview head coach)

“Overall class baseball is a positive. It allows for a more-even level of competition. If we look at the schools with larger enrollment it is more common (especially now with pitch count rules) for them to compete with schools their size who have a similar pitching staffs. 

“(Who benefits the most from class baseball is a two-pronged answer. On one hand you have smaller schools 1A, 2A, even 3A who have had more of a chance to compete and have success against schools their size. Again, looking at depth of pitching on those levels it creates a more even playing field. Second answer would be the private/parochial/preparatory schools. They have had more success than most public schools in the tournament, yes they fluctuate in classes because of success factor, but also they have the advantage of being able to set an enrollment where public schools do not.

“Maybe add one more class, I’d like to see just what that would look like. Northview is at the top of the 3A scale so that may move us to the bottom of 4A. I don’t know how that would effect everyone. Also maybe look at a multiplier for the private/parochial/preparatory schools in sports like other states have done. Other states have done it and I think it does create a more even system.

“Overall I think class baseball is great. I think however we could all look back to the days of the David vs. Goliath matchups which brought in huge crowds. I would also like to say that I’m not trying to bring anyone down in this because right now I would argue the state of Indiana has as much baseball talent as any state in the Midwest. The coaching in our state has been really great. I enjoy competing against these coaches from all the different classes and I think baseball in Indiana is as good as it has ever been and I think with the classes we’ve seen some great tournaments and will continue to do so in the future.”

TONY UGGEN (IHSBCA Hall of Famer, former Northfield and current Blackford head coach)

“I think (class baseball) is a positive. I was fortunate to have some teams make deep runs in the tournament during my career that likely would not have happened under a one-class system. In fact, one of my best teams at Northfield was during the one-class era and we were beaten by what is now a 4A school. Had that been a class season, we may have had a chance to win state, minimally, made a deeper run. It provides a few more teams the chance to finish as champions thanks to a more level playing field. 
“More communities (benefit from class baseball). When we came back into town after our first championship years ago, there were thousands of people in the Kmart parking lot waiting for us. Then we took the fire engine ride through town and spent the next week getting treated like royalty … That was a great experience for the community of Wabash and the players and their families. All have a memory that will last a lifetime. In the one-class era, very few small communities got to experience the state level.
“(Class baseball) is pretty good overall, but I would like to see a more consistent schedule set at the sectional level for all sites as much as possible. That is hard to do since some sectionals have lights, others don’t, and trying to work around graduations. But host schools have the slight advantage of setting a schedule that best suits their pitching staff. Of course, weather can play havoc to the best of schedules and no matter how the schedule is set, someone will still likely be unhappy. 
“There’s some talk about a slight revamp of the class system to help break down the large enrollment gap between the top and bottom 4A schools. Like most, those at the bottom of 4A just want to have a more balanced system. I appreciate the IHSBCA and IHSAA exploring possible options.”

New head coach Burcham looks for Batesville Bulldogs to push potential

By STEVE KRAH
http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Tyler Burcham has gotten to know a few things about Batesville, Ind., in his four years of teaching there and five seasons as a baseball coach.
“We have a town that really rallies around its baseball,” says Burcham, who was a Batesville High School assistant from 2018-22 and recently took over the program from alum Justin Tucker, who guided the BHS program 2016-22. “I learned a lot from (Coach Tucker) and — hopefully — I can continue to push this program in the right direction.”
The Bulldogs won 20 games and lost to Franklin County in the semifinals of the IHSAA Class 3A Rushville Consolidated Sectional in 2022.
Batesville (enrollment around 715) is a member of the Eastern Indiana Athletic Conference (with Connersville, East Central, Franklin County, Greensburg, Lawrenceburg, Rushville Consolidated and South Dearborn).
Besides Franklin County and Rushville Consolidated, the Bulldogs were part of a 3A sectional grouping in 2022 with Connersville, Greensburg, Lawrenceburg and South Dearborn. Batesville has won 13 sectional titles — the last two in 2018 and 2021.
Burcham, who teaches Health and Physical Education to eighth graders at Batesville Middle School, has already met with some returning players from the Class of 2023 (middle infielder Charlie Schebler is an Ohio State University commit) and morning weightlifting sessions have happened the past two weeks. The goal is to build team chemistry and commitment.
“We’re having a lot of guys coming through this program who want to play collegiately,” says Burcham. “Our next step is to push our potential and see how much harder can we hit the baseball and how much harder we can throw it.
“There’s culture build-up. We want to see how much further can we take this thing.”
Two alums — Zach Britton (Class of 2017) and Bryan Hoeing (Class of 2015) — are in professional baseball and come to work with the next wave during their off-seasons.
“They’ve elevated those expectations,” says Burcham.
Zach Wade (Class of 2022) has gone on to baseball at Adrian (Mich.) College. Other recent graduates who signed at the next level include Class of 2021’s Sam Voegele (Indiana University Southeast) and Riley Zink (Oakland City University) and Class of 2019’s Trey Heidlage (Marian University) and Lane Oesterling (Indiana University Southeast).
Doug Burcham, Tyler’s father, has joined the coaching staff. Other assistants are being sought.
The elder Burcham coached at Waldron in 2022 and recently accepted as job as math teacher at Greensburg.
Doug Burcham was teaching and coach in Versailles, Ind., when Tyler went to school at South Ripley until second grade and then moved to Greensburg.
Tyler did not play varsity as a freshman, when his father was Pirates head coach. Scott Holdsworth was at the head of the program during his three varsity years.
“I remember his ability to create relationships,” says Burcham of Holdsworth. “He motivated players as if they were adults and treated them as such. I always appreciated that about Scott.”
Burcham is a 2013 graduate of Greensburg High School, where he was part of successful programs in soccer, football, basketball and baseball. He was the first man off the bench for the 2013 3A state boys basketball champions.
Recruited by outgoing coach Matt Kennedy, left-handed pitcher Burcham played two baseball seasons at Parkland College in Champaign, Ill., for Cobras head coach David Garcia, then two more for Mark Brew at Lee University in Cleveland, Tenn.
Brew has been Flames head coach since the 2007 season and has enjoyed success at the NAIA and NCAA Division II levels.
Burcham recalls Brew’s attention to detail.
“We’d practice standing from the National Anthem and he’d grade us on it,” says Burcham. “Everything we did we tried to make sure we were really good at it.
“He always wanted us to be good men. He’s a big family guy and wants the best for everybody.”
After Lee, Tyler was a full-time substitute at Batesville and spent a few months helping his father at Waldron when the opportunity arose to join the Tucker’s Batesville baseball staff.
The Bulldogs plays home games off-campus at Liberty Park, which celebrated its 100th year of baseball in 2021. Batesville shares a skinned-infield diamond with the Oldenburg Academy baseball program and Batesville adult slow pitch softball.
Varsity games and practices are coordinated with Oldenburg. Junior varsity and C-team practices take place at an on-campus field which is adjacent to the football stadium and is considered too small for varsity play.

Batesville Bats — founded by Brandon Blessing and Paul Drake — are a travel organization that worked closely with Tucker and will continue to help Burcham. The 2023 season will be the eighth season for the Bats. There will be teams for 9U to 15U.
Tyler’s mother — Cindy Burcham — is a former nurse and current case manager for Indiana University Health. Both brothers are older. Kyle Burcham works for Amazon and lives in Santa Claus, Ind. Shawn Burcham works with a sports program app and resides in Indianapolis.
Tyler and Carissa Burcham were married in July 2021.
“She’s been a rock star during this whole thing,” says Tyler of his wife. “She wants to help in any way she can.
“I think she knows how much it means to me.”

Tyler Burcham (Batesville Middle School Photo)

Tyler Burcham (Lee University Photo)

Tyler Burcham

Tyler Burcham

Andrean beats Brebeuf Jesuit for eighth IHSAA 3A state crown

BY STEVE KRAH
http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Peyton Nisch has a torn left shoulder that doesn’t allow him to effectively swing a bat.
But Niskch (11-0) can pitch and held No. 4-ranked Brebeuf Jesuit in-check much of the time in helping No. 1 Andrean (31-4) to its eighth IHSAA state baseball championship in nine final appearances at the State Finals.
The 59ers beat the Braves 5-1 Friday, June 17 at Victory Field in Indianapolis.
“I changed up my tempo; I changed up my first pitch,” said Niksch, a 5-foot-11 senior right-hander who struck out eight, walked two and yielded three hits and one unearned run over seven innings and 112 pitches. “Sometimes it would be a fastball. Sometimes it would be a change-up.
“I kept them off-balance and they knew it was coming.”
Said Brebeuf coach Jeff Scott of Purdue Northwest-bound Niksch, “I thought we’d get a few more hits off him. He did a really good job. Our kids battled through it. We had a lot of adversity tonight.”
Andrean opened the 2022 season with Tennessee trip. On the way back to northwest Indiana, the team bus went past The Vic.
“We’re gonna be there,” said Niksch and several of his teammates, predicting a future that came true months later. All the coaches said that the way we played in Tennessee there’s no way. We proved them wrong. That’s all that matters.”
Dave Pishkur concluded his 42nd season as 59ers coach with his eighth 3A state title — all won since 2005. Andrean was state runner-up in 2004.
“We won the state championship because of the guy that we beat,” said Pishkur after the 59ers topped senior right-hander Andrew Dutkanych, who is committed to Vanderbilt University but could been selected high in the 2022 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. “We beat a stud today. That’s a feather in our cap.
“So seven years down the road when he’s pitching in the major leagues, (we can say) we beat that kid or I got a hit off him.”
L.V. Phillips Mental Attitude Award winner Dutkanych (8-1) went all six innings and gave up eight hits with eight strikeouts and one walk over 102 pitches. Four of the five runs scored against him were earned.
“I’m so proud of these kids,” said Pishkur. “They’re tough kids and they’re athletic.”
Andrean swiped seven bases — three for junior Caleb Smith and one each for senior Alonzo Paul, freshman Mason Barth, junior Drayk Bowen and senior Kyle Tyler — and diving catches were made by sophomore right fielder Moises Vazquez for the first out and senior center fielder Billy Jones for the 20th of 21.
The 59ers took a 5-1 edge with a run in the fifth.
Senior Jax Kalemba led off the frame with a single — one of his three on the day — and courtesy runner Smith later scored on a sacrifice fly by junior pinch-hitter Angel Ramirez — who came in with just three at-bats for 2022. Kalemba’s plate appearance was kept alive by a dropped foul pop-up.
Andrean pushed across a run in the fourth for a 4-1 lead.
Bowen drew a lead-off walk, stole second, went to third base on a wild pitch and scored on suicide squeeze bunt by Vazquez.
Brebeuf (26-5) pulled to within 3-1 with an unearned run in the third.
With two outs, senior Anthony Annee singled, moved to second base on an error, third base on junior Jayden Ohmer’s single and scored on an errant pick-off throw toward first base by Niksch.
The 59ers strung together five straight hits and scored three runs — all with two outs — in the second inning.
After two strikeouts, Jones doubled, Nisch bunted for a single (and was spelled by courtesy runner Tyler), Paul singled, Barth produced an infield single and Kalemba smacked a single.
Jones and Tyler scored on Paul’s hit. Paul crossed the plate on Kalemba’s safety.
Scott, who had announced that he’s stepping down after four years of leading the program, talked about Friday’s game.
“We tip our caps to Andrean,” said Scott. “They had a really good game plan coming into this.
“We knew they were going to (suicide squeeze). It’s just a difficult play to defend in baseball. It takes the perfect bunt and they got it down.
“We had one heck of a season and will have nothing to hang our heads about when all this wears off.”
In going 26-5, Brebeuf got to its second state finals (the Braves were 3A runners-up in 2012) by winning 15 straight and 19 of 20.
“We had an unbelievable senior bunch to lead the path for these young guys here coming up through the program,” said Scott. “I came in with these guys when they were freshmen and watched a bunch of kids work their tails off.
“It gives me a lot of joy that they set the tone of our program and our culture.”
Brebeuf’s next head coach will be Wes Neese, who has been a Braves assistant.

Carlisle meeting ‘city’ coaching challenges at Indianapolis Washington

By STEVE KRAH
http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Baseball players at George Washington High School in Indianapolis are analyzing data in an attempt to get better.
Coach Kyle Carlisle’s Continentals have been going through individualized player development this fall and are crunching the numbers and studying the video.
They are looking at on-base percentage, quality at-bats, batting average and more to improve the offensive side of the game. 
GameChanger clips are being used to change hitting mechanics, plate approach, defensive tendencies, etc.
Indianapolis Washington is even doing a little scouting for the 2022 season. This effort is player-led. Carlisle provides the means and lets the athletes take it from there.

Carlisle is heading into his third season (second on the field since the COVID-19 pandemic took away the 2020 campaign).

Indianapolis Washington (enrollment around 750) is a member of the Greater Indianapolis Athletic Conference (with Crispus AttucksEminenceIndianapolis MetropolitanIrvington Preparatory AcademyPurdue PolytechnicTindley and Victory College Preparatory). The GIAC had four baseball schools in 2021 — Washington, Eminence, Purdue Polytechnic and Tindley. In its first year back, the Continentals made it to the four-team conference tournament, losing to Eminence in the final.

The Continentals made great strides during the 2021 season, with four players earning First-Team All-GIAC honors. Senior Alfonso Gonzalez was an all-conference catcher and Indianapolis Washington’s 2021 Male Athlete of the Year.
Junior outfielder Isaac Kolela earned First-Team honors, boasting a .333 batting average, and .500 OBP.
Sophomore standout Frank Amador earned First-Team honors by posting a win vs. Purdue Poly on the mound in the conference tournament, pitching five innings, with 11 strikeouts and only three walks.
Sophomore third baseman Darnell Stewart earned First-Team with a .400 batting average, and .600 OBP. His biggest moment was the walk-off single to send the Continentals to the GIAC Tournament Championship game.
Carlisle teaches fourth grade at Phalen Leadership Academy 93. He also runs Carlisle Baseball Academy and gives lessons all over the city and consults for travel and youth teams.

“It almost doesn’t feel like work for me,” says Carlisle of coaching baseball. “I love doing it.”

Scott Hicks, George Washington’s athletic director and former Indianapolis Cathedral High School and University of Notre Dame basketball player and longtime Cathedral varsity basketball coach is in Carlisle’s words, “Is our biggest supporter.”
Carlisle went on to say, “Scott has done an amazing job in being a mentor to my development as a varsity coach.”

In 2021, Washington was part of an IHSAA Class 3A baseball sectional grouping with Beech GroveHerronIndianapolis Bishop Chatard and Indianapolis Shortridge. The Continentals have won two sectional titles — 1969 and 1978.

There are challenges in every program and Carlisle and assistant coach James Tradup have their own unique obstacles.
Indianapolis Washington went 11 years without baseball prior to Carlisle taking his first varsity head coaching job to reboot Continentals’ baseball.Washington’s “home” diamond is at Indy Sports Park, which is about 10 miles south of campus.
The teams’ practices on-campus on a converted softball field and roll in portable mounds.

Indianapolis Public Schools are a “school of choice” – which essentially means that students living in Indianapolis, that attend public schools, can choose where they go to High School. No specific middle schools feed Washington.

“Coaching in the city is the hardest thing in the world to do,” says Carlisle. “We have to build relationships with families whose students play middle school baseball and/or travel ball in the city to commit to George Washington.
“And based on proximity to where those families live, can be a hard sell. We hope to build a reputation that does recruiting for us soon.

”While there have been no commitments yet, Carlisle notes that he sees potential college players throughout his team.

A recent graduate received college baseball offers but opted to join the U.S. Army.
Coach Carlisle is a 2007 graduate of Flint (Mich.) Kearsley High School. Carlisle was a pitcher for two seasons each at Olivet Nazarene University (Bourbonnais, Ill.) and Grace College (Winona Lake, Ind.). His head coaches were Todd Reid at ONU and Josh Bailey at Grace. Carlisle earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Grace in 2012 and holds a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership (2015) and a Master’s Degree in Psychology/Life Coaching (2017) from Grand Canyon University (Phoenix).
Kyle married his wife, Valerie, in 2013. They reside in Speedway, Ind.


.

Alfonso Gonzalez and Kyle Carlisle.

Littlejohn emphasizes fun, aggressiveness for Tippecanoe Valley

By STEVE KRAH
http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Just six seasons after playing his last baseball season at Tippecanoe Valley High School new Akron and Mentone in Indiana, Jarred Littlejohn became the Vikings head coach for 2021 after two years as junior varsity coach on Greg Prater’s staff.
As he prepares for 2022, the former four-year outfielder tells what is important to him while leading the Valley program.
“Our biggest thing is to make sure the kids are loose and having fun,” says Littlejohn. “If they’re tight, they’re not going to perform.
“On offense, we want to be aggressive and get the pitch we’re looking for. On every pitch, we have an approach. We know we’re not going to be perfect.”
And then there’s the moundsmen.
“Pitching last year was the best part of our game,” says Littlejohn. “We knew what was working and stayed with it. Work ahead and don’t get behind in the count.
“We had a good defense behind us. (Pitchers) knew we could make the plays in the field.”
Littlejohn played for three coaches in high school — Ryan Moore his freshmen year, Brandon Cody as a sophomore and junior and Justin Brannock as a senior.
“There has not been much stability in the baseball program,” says Littlejohn. “We’re going to try to bring that back.”
Assisting Littlejohn, a machinist at Craig Welding & Manufacturing in Mentone, is Anthony Newcomer and Mike Bowers.
An IHSAA Limited Contact Period opened Aug. 30 and closes Oct. 16. Littlejohn has been conducting open fields and weightlifting program that has consistently had six to 12 participants.
Tippecanoe Valley (enrollment around 570) has many baseball players involved in fall sports.
In 2021, there were 26 players taking part in varsity and JV games. The varsity went 12-12.
The Vikings are a member of the Three Rivers Conference (with along with Maconaquah, Manchester, North Miami, Northfield, Peru, Rochester, Southwood, Wabash and Whitko).
Last season, Valley was part of an IHSAA Class 3A sectional grouping with Jimtown, Lakeland, NorthWood, Wawasee and West Noble.The Vikings have won five sectional titles — the last in 2012.
Tippecanoe Valley is fed by youth leagues in Akron and Mentone. Those organizations are a part of Town & Country Baseball of Indiana.
Tanner Andrews, who is now a pitcher in the Miami Marlins organization, is a 2014 graduate who was selected in the 2018 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft out of Purdue University.
Littlejohn says right-hander Owen Kirchenstien (Class of 2022) is expected to commit to junior college baseball.

Jarred Littlejohn.
Jarred Littlejohn.

Wichman raises interest, expectations for Scottsburg Warriors

By STEVE KRAH
http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Brian Wichman has helped Scottsburg (Ind.) High School to many baseball successes since taking over the Warriors program.
When he came on board prior to the 2018 season, Scottsburg had not had not posted a record above .500 since 2004 and high school players were not involved in travel ball in the summer.
“We had to get back to the basics and get people interested in ball,” says Wichman. “I’ve tried to really push kids toward travel ball.”
Wichman’s Warriors went 15-13 in 2018, regressed to 9-19 in 2019 with a young squad (there were only two seniors and one junior), missed the 2020 season because of the COVID-19 pandemic then sported 19-10 mark in 2021 bolstered by the senior and sophomore classes.
There were 22 players to take on varsity and junior varsity schedules.
Scottsburg (enrollment around 770) is a member of the Mid-Southern Conference (with Austin, Brownstown Central, Charlestown, Clarksville, Corydon Central, Eastern of Pekin, North Harrison, Salem and Silver Creek).
In 2021, the Warriors were part of an IHSAA Class 3A sectional grouping with Brownstown Central, Charlestown, Corydon Central, Madison Consolidated, North Harrison, Salem and Silver Creek (the 2021 host). Scottsburg has won six sectional crowns — the last in 1996.
Scottsburg plays on Warrior Field, an on-campus facility that was laser-graded four years ago and has Bermuda grass.
“It looks really good, especially when we get to May,” says Wichman.
Feeder systems include Scott County Youth League (T-ball through 12U) and a middle school team of seventh and eighth graders that play schools in the MSC and Hoosier Hills Conference.
Wichman, who teaches engineering and welding classes and is involved in Project Lead The Way at Scottsburg, has extensive coaching experiences at the high school and travel ball levels.
His first season was as a Columbus (Ind.) East High School assistant in 1995 while he was doing his student teaching. Wichman graduated from Ball State University with an Industrial Technology degree. He played baseball for one season (1991) at Indiana University Southeast before transferring to BSU.
Wichman served as an assistant at North Harrison High School in Ramsey, Ind., in 1996 and 1997 and helped at Columbus (Ind.) North High School in 2007.
From 2004-14, he ran the Indiana Blazers travel organization and coached for the Indiana Prospects in 2015 and 2016.
Brian and wife Cathy have four sons and all played for the Blazers and other travel teams, including the Indiana Prospects, Cincinnati Flames
Evansville Razorbacks and Indiana Bulls, as well as at Columbus East.
Left-handed pitcher Brian “B.T.” Wichman (Columbus East Class of 2013) was at Murray State University, Gulf Coast Community College and the University of Indianapolis. Peyton Gray, a 2014 Columbus East graduate now in the Kansas City Royals organization, was a high school and GCCC teammate.
Defensive back/catcher Christian Wichman (Columbus East Class of 2014) went to Thomas More University in Crestview Hills, Ky., for football and baseball then transferred to play baseball at the University of West Georgia (Carrollton, Ga.).
Defensive back Noah Wichman (Columbus East Class of 2016) played football at Taylor University in Upland, Ind.
Infielder Jonah Wichman (Columbus East Class of 2019) was on the baseball team at Butler University in Indianapolis in 2020 and 2021 and has transferred to St. Charles Community College (Cottleville, Mo.).
The past two summers, Brian Wichman has been an assistant in the College Summer League at Grand Park — in 2020 with head coach Joe Thatcher’s Park Rangers and in 2021 with head coach Kevin Christman’s Moon Shots.
A 1990 graduate of Seymour (Ind.) High School, Wichman played one varsity season for Owls coach Bob Bowman.

Brian Wichman (Eyes Of The Heart Photography)
The Wichman family (from left): Noah. B.T., Cathy, Brian, Christian and Jonah.
The Wichmans (from left): First row — Cathy and Brian; Second row — Noah, B.T., Jonah and Christian.
Cathy and Brian Wichman.
Brian and Cathy Wichman.
Cathy, B.T. and Brian Wichman.
Brian, Jonah and Cathy Wichman.

IHSCBA names all-staters for 2021 season

By STEVE KRAH
http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Members of the Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association voted for all-state teams and the organization has released that list.
All-staters are honored in all four classes. As a selection in the 2021 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, Southridge shortstop Colson Montgomery was automatically named all-state.

2021 IHSBCA ALL-STATE TEAM
Class 4A
Pitchers: Grant Stratton (Jasper), Nate Dohm (Zionsville).
C: Hunter Dobbins (Mount Vernon of Fortville).
1B: Kaleb Kolpien (Homestead).
2B: Joel Walton (Mount Vernon of Fortville).
3B: Connor Foley (Jasper).
SS: Tucker Biven (New Albany).
OF: Carter Mathison (Homestead), Max Clark (Franklin), Tommy O’Connor (Mooresville).
Honorable Mention: Evan Waggoner (Bedford North Lawrence); Austin Bode (Columbus North); Jaden Deel (Hobart); Andrew Wallace (Jasper); Jackson Micheels (Carmel); Breenen Weigert (Homestead); Jack Braun (Fishers); Tyler Walkup (Lawrence North); Quentin Markle (Westfield); Joe Huffman (Avon); Nick Mitchell (Carmel); Brad White (Andrean); Blake Herrmann (Castle); Camden Jordan (Cathedral); Sam Gladd (Columbia City); Eli Hopf (Jasper); Brody Chrisman (Zionsville); J.D. Rogers (Carmel); Keaton Mahan (Westfield); Gage Standifer (Westfield); Kyler McIntosh (Columbus North); Chris Gallagher (Cathedral); Carter Doorn (Lake Central); Grant Comstock (Valparaiso); Tate Warner (Fishers); Carter Gilbert (Northridge).

Class 3A
Pitchers: Garrett Harker (Lebanon), Luke Hayden (Edgewood).
C: Keifer Wilson (Greencastle).
1B: Brycen Hannah (John Glenn).
2B: Gavin Morris (Northview).
3B: Dalton Wasson (Heritage), Camden Gasser (Southridge).
SS: Dominic Decker (Silver Creek).
OF: Jared Comia (Hanover Central), Evan Pearce (Oak Hill), Kade Townsend (Peru), Sergio Lira Ayala (NorthWood).
Honorable Mention: Jacob Loftus (Peru); Xavier Nolan (Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger); Aidan Hardcastle (Oak Hill); Cameron Sater (Edgewood); Riley Western (Western); Brody Whitaker (Greencastle); Nick Sutherlin (Greencastle); Jack Moroknek (Brebeuf Jesuit); Landon Carr (Northview); Kameron Salazar (Wawasee); Damien Gudakunst (Leo); Connor Schmiedlin (Culver Academies); Jacob Pruitt (Yorktown); Zach Forner (Madison); Andrew Dutkanych (Brebeuf Jesuit); Mitchell Dean (Western); Holden Groher (Silver Creek); Bret Matthys (Hanover Central); Trey Reed (Washington); Coley Stevens (Leo); Peyton Olejnik (Hanover Central).

Class 2A
Pitchers: Owen Willard (Eastside), Brady Linkel (South Ripley).
C: Joel Kennedy (Monroe Central).
1B: Parker Allman (Lapel).
2B: Alex VanWinkle (Union County).
3B: Gavin Lash (Wapahani).
SS: Landen Southern (Clinton Prairie).
OF: C.J. Richmond (Park Tudor), Dane DuBois (Cascade), Andrew Wiggins (Heritage Christian).
Honorable Mention: Gavin Gleason (Delphi); Brayden Stowe (Perry Central); Aidan Roach (Cascade); Drew Murray (Boone Grove); Andrew Shepherd (Mitchell); Snyder Pennington (Eastern of Pekin); Eli Watson (Providence); Aidyn Coffey (Monroe Central); Darien Pugh (Cascade); Gavin Noble (Wapahani); Chase Long (Delphi); Caleb Henderson (Wapahani); Gabe Eslinger (Linton-Stockton); Adam Besser (South Adams); Dominic Anderson (Hagerstown); Josh Pyne (Linton-Stockton); Khal Stephen (Seeger); Bryce Deckman (Monroe Central); Wyatt Blinn (Cascade).

Class 1A
Pitchers: Garrett Stevens (Bethesda Christian), Luke Leverton (Seton Catholic).
C: Mo Lloyd (Southwood).
1B: Alex Farr (Southwood).
2B: Ethan Bock (Fremont).
3B: Ethan Wendling (Southwestern of Shelbyville).
SS: Brett Sherrard (Bloomfield).
OF: Nolan Harris (Clay City), Landon Cole (Rising Sun), Evan Price (Rossville).
Honorable Mention: Pierson Barnes (Riverton Parke); Nick Miller (Fremont); Nick Swartzentruber (Barr-Reeve); Riley Schebler (Oldenburg Academy); Kyle Swartzentruber (North Daviess); Jordan Jones (Southwestern of Shelbyville); Aaron Wagler (Barr-Reeve); Kameron Colclasure (Fremont); Joey Spin (Caston); Andrew Oesterling (Oldenburg Academy); Mason Yentes (Southwood); Jake Moynihan (Seton Catholic); Cayden Gothrup (Daleville); Samuel Gasper (Borden); Gavin Gentry (Borden).

IHSAA makes tourney draw; Who adds to trophy case?

By STEVE KRAH

http://www.IndianaRBI.com

The Indiana High School Athletic Association made an early draw for its 2021 baseball state tournament.

The draw was made Sunday, May 2 for an event that begins with sectional games on Wednesday, May 26. Regionals are Saturday, June 5, semistates Saturday, June 12 and the State Finals Monday and Tuesday, June 21-22.

The Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association North/South Series follows the State Finals with festivities in Evansville.

Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic wiped out the 2020 season so this is the first state tournament series since 2019.

IHSAA BASEBALL TOURNAMENT

(2021)

Sectionals

Wednesday-Monday, May 26-31

Class 4A

Merrillville 

Game 1: Munster vs. Highland.
Game 2: Merrillville vs. East Chicago Central. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Hammond Morton vs. Lake Central. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Lake Central 20 (2019), Merrillville 13 (2001), Highland 12 (2000), Munster 12 (2016), Hammond Morton 10 (2015), East Chicago Central (0).

Chesterton 

Game 1:  Valparaiso vs. Portage.
Game 2:  Hobart vs. Andrean.
Game 3:  Lowell vs. Crown Point.
Game 4:  Chesterton vs. Game 1 winner.
Game 5: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Championship: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Andrean 29 (2019), Crown Point 21 (2019), Valparaiso 20 (2012), Chesterton 19 (2018), Lowell 9 (1994), Portage 8 (2013), Hobart 6 (2014).

Plymouth 

Game 1: Plymouth vs. Mishawaka.
Game 2: LaPorte vs. South Bend Riley.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Michigan City vs. South Bend Adams. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): LaPorte 36 (2017), Plymouth 23 (2006), Mishawaka 8 (2019), South Bend Adams 6 (2009), South Bend Riley 2 (1991), Michigan City 1 (2002).

Northridge 

Game 1: Goshen vs. Penn.
Game 2: Elkhart vs. Concord.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Northridge vs. Warsaw Community. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Penn 22 (2018), Goshen 17 (2008), Warsaw 11 (2010), Northridge 7 (2019), Concord 4 (2014), Elkhart 0.

Carroll (Fort Wayne) 

Game 1: Carroll (Fort Wayne) vs. Fort Wayne Snider. 

Game 2: East Noble vs. Fort Wayne Northrop.
Game 3: DeKalb vs. Game 1 winner.
Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): DeKalb 19 (2002), East Noble 15 (1995), Northrop 15 (2016), Carroll 14 (2019), Snider 11 (2017).

Huntington North 

Game 1: Huntington North vs. Fort Wayne North Side. 

Game 2: Fort Wayne South Side vs. Homestead.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Fort Wayne Wayne vs. Columbia City. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Huntington North 20 (2017), Homestead 14 (2016), Columbia City 9 (2007), Wayne 7 (1992), South Side 3 (2019), North Side 0.

Lafayette Jeff

Game 1: McCutcheon vs. Lafayette Jeff.
Game 2: Harrison (West Lafayette) vs. Logansport. 

Game 3: Kokomo vs. Game 1 winner.
Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Logansport 29 (2019), Lafayette Jeff 17 (2013), Kokomo 13 (2010), Harrison 11 (2015), McCutcheon 11 (2014).

Westfield 

Game 1: Carmel vs. Zionsville.
Game 2: Hamilton Southeastern vs. Fishers. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Westfield vs. Noblesville. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Hamilton Southeastern 15 (2019), Noblesville 14 (2014), Zionsville 14 (2018), Carmel 13 (2016), Westfield 5 (2011), Fishers 2 (2018).

Pendleton Heights

Game 1: Pendleton Heights vs. Greenfield-Central. 

Game 2: Richmond vs. Anderson.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Mt. Vernon (Fortville) vs. Muncie Central. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Richmond 29 (2011), Pendleton Heights 17 (2018), Greenfield-Central 14 (2019), Muncie Central 14 (2000), Anderson 7 (2012), Mt. Vernon 7 (2011).

Ben Davis 

Game 1: Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Indianapolis Crispus Attucks. 

Game 2: Pike vs. Indianapolis Arsenal Tech.
Game 3: Lawrence Central vs. Ben Davis.
Game 4: North Central (Indianapolis) vs. Lawrence North. 

Game 5: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Championship: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Indianapolis Cathedral 23 (2019), Ben Davis 12 (2014), North Central 11 (2006), Pike 10 (2010), Lawrence Central 8 (2004), Lawrence North 8 (2016), Arsenal Tech 1 (1970), Crispus Attucks 0.

Franklin Central 

Game 1: Southport vs. Roncalli.
Game 2: Perry Meridian vs. Franklin Central. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: New Palestine vs. Warren Central. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): New Palestine 16 (2015), Roncalli 14 (2018), Southport 13 (2008), Warren Central 9 (1991), Franklin Central 8 (2018), Perry Meridian 8 (2007).

Plainfield 

Game 1: Terre Haute North Vigo vs. Decatur Central. 

Game 2: Plainfield vs. Terre Haute South Vigo.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Brownsburg vs. Avon. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): North Vigo 19 (2015), Decatur Central 16 (2019), Brownsburg 14 (2013), South Vigo 14 (2018), Plainfield 8 (1997), Avon 5 (2019).

Mooresville 

Game 1: Center Grove vs. Martinsville.
Game 2: Franklin Community vs. Mooresville.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Whiteland Community vs. Greenwood Community. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Center Grove 19 (2016), Martinsville 15 (2019), Mooresville 10 (2004), Whiteland 10 (2014), Greenwood 8 (1984), Franklin 5 (2013).

Bloomington North 

Game 1: East Central vs. Columbus North.
Game 2: Shelbyville vs. Columbus East.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Bloomington South vs. Bloomington North. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Columbus East 19 (2019), Bloomington South 18 (2016), Bloomington North 17 (2013), Shelbyville 10 (2005), Columbus North 13 (2017), East Central 6 (2006).

Floyd Central 

Game 1: New Albany vs. Jennings County.
Game 2: Seymour vs. Floyd Central.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Jeffersonville vs. Bedford North Lawrence. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Jeffersonville 26 (2019), New Albany 22 (2016), Bedford North Lawrence 14 (2017), Seymour 14 (1995), Floyd Central 13 (2015), Jennings County 11 (2006).

Evansville Reitz 

Game 1: Jasper vs. Castle.
Game 2: Evansville North vs. Evansville Harrison. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Evansville Reitz vs. Evansville Central. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Jasper 38 (2017), Castle 15 (2019), Central 9 (2017), Harrison 7 (2016), North 5 (2013), Reitz 5 (2015).

Class 3A

Griffith 

Game 1: Hammond Gavit vs. Hammond Clark. 

Game 2: Calumet vs. Griffith.
Game 3: Hammond vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Griffith 17 (2019), Clark 9 (2011), Hammond 7 (1999), Gavit 5 (1997), Calumet 3 (1990).

Kankakee Valley 

Game 1: Knox vs. Culver Academies.
Game 2: Hanover Central vs. Kankakee Valley. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: River Forest vs. Glenn. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Glenn 9 (2017), Culver Academies 4 (1997), Kankakee Valley 4 (1999), Hanover Central 1 (2011), Knox 1 (1996), River Forest 0.

South Bend Clay 

Game 1: South Bend Clay vs. South Bend St. Joseph. 

Game 2: Mishawaka Marian vs. New Prairie. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): St. Joseph 15 (2019), Clay 12 (2013), Mishawaka Marian 9 (2016), New Prairie 3 (2005).

Northwestern 

Game 1: Peru vs. Western.
Game 2: Twin Lakes vs. Benton Central.
Game 3: West Lafayette vs. Maconaquah. 

Game 4: Northwestern vs. Game 1 winner.
Game 5: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Championship: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Benton Central 25 (2009), Western 20 (2019), Twin Lakes 12 (1993), Northwestern 9 (2014), West Lafayette 9 (2011), Peru 5 (2018), Maconaquah 3 (1994).

Wawasee 

Game 1: Jimtown vs. Tippecanoe Valley.
Game 2: Lakeland vs. Wawasee.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: West Noble vs. NorthWood. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner.

Titles Won (Most Recent): NorthWood 12 (2018), Lakeland 11 (2008), Jimtown 9 (2007), West Noble 8 (2006), Wawasee 6 (1997), Tippecanoe Valley 5 (2012).

Garrett 

Game 1: Angola vs. Fort Wayne Bishop Luers.
Game 2: Garrett vs. Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran. 

Game 3: Leo vs. Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger.
Game 4: New Haven vs. Game 1 winner.
Game 5: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner.
Championship: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): New Haven 13 (2019), Dwenger 11 (2016), Concordia 8 (2018), Leo 8 (2012), Luers 7 (2012), Angola 5 (2019), Garrett 3 (1973).

Bellmont 

Game 1: Marion vs. Norwell.
Game 2: Mississinewa vs. Heritage.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Bellmont vs. Oak Hill. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Marion 20 (1998), Bellmont 19 (2016), Norwell 16 (2017), Heritage 9 (2015), Mississinewa 3 (2006), Oak Hill 3 (2006).

Yorktown 

Game 1: Hamilton Heights vs. Delta.
Game 2: Jay County vs. Guerin Catholic.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: New Castle vs. Yorktown. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Yorktown 17 (2019), Delta 13 (2016), New Castle 13 (2014), Jay County 9 (2019), Hamilton Heights 2 (2012), Guerin 0.

North Montgomery 

Game 1: Crawfordsville vs. Lebanon.
Game 2: North Montgomery vs. South Vermillion. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Northview vs. Frankfort.
Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Crawfordsville 17 (2013), Frankfort 13 (2019), North Montgomery 12 (2018), Lebanon 11 (2014), South Vermillion 10 (2019), Northview 9 (2017).

Brebeuf Jesuit 

Game 1: Greencastle vs. Danville Community.
Game 2: Indianapolis Cardinal Ritter vs. Tri-West Hendricks. 

Game 3: Brebeuf Jesuit vs. Game 1 winner.
Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Ritter 17 (2019), Brebeuf 14 (2017), Greencastle 12 (1994), Danville 8 (2015), Tri-West Hendricks 7 (2018).

Beech Grove 

Game 1: Indianapolis Bishop Chatard vs. Beech Grove. 

Game 2: Indianapolis Shortridge vs. Herron.
Game 3: Indianapolis George Washington vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Indianapolis Bishop Chatard 11 (2007), Beech Grove 6 (2014), Indianapolis Washington 2 (1978), Herron 0, Shortridge 0.

Owen Valley 

Game 1: West Vigo vs. Owen Valley.
Game 2: Edgewood vs. Indian Creek.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Sullivan vs. Brown County. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Sullivan 16 (2015), West Vigo 14 (2018), Edgewood 12 (2019), Indian Creek 6 (2019), Brown County 1 (1993), Owen Valley 1 (1975).

Lawrenceburg 

Game 1: South Dearborn vs. Batesville.
Game 2: Greensburg vs. Connersville.
Game 3: Rushville Consolidated vs. Lawrenceburg. 

Game 4: Franklin County vs. Game 1 winner.
Game 5: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner.
Championship: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Lawrenceburg 20 (2017), Connersville 18 (2010), Batesville 12 (2018), South Dearborn 12 (2019), Greensburg 9 (2016), Franklin County 7 (2013), Rushville 5 (1999).

Silver Creek 

Game 1: Silver Creek vs. Charlestown.
Game 2: Scottsburg vs. Corydon Central.
Game 3: Brownstown Central vs. Salem.
Game 4: Madison Consolidated vs. North Harrison. 

Game 5: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner.
Championship: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Madison 22 (2009), North Harrison 9 (2015), Silver Creek 9 (2019), Scottsburg 6 (1996). Salem 3 (1996), Brownstown Central 2 (2016). Charlestown 2 (2009), Corydon Central 2 (2010).

Southridge 

Game 1: Washington vs. Princeton Community. 

Game 2: Gibson Southern vs. Vincennes Lincoln. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Pike Central vs. Southridge. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Vincennes Lincoln 17 (2019), Gibson Southern 9 (2014), Washington 9 (2018), Princeton 6 (1991), Southridge 5 (2019), Pike Central 1 (1989).

Evansville Bosse 

Game 1: Evansville Bosse vs. Evansville Memorial. 

Game 2: Heritage Hills vs. Boonville.
Game 3: Mt. Vernon vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Memorial 29 (2019), Mount Vernon 17 (2015), Boonville 12 (2017), Heritage Hills 7 (2011), Bosse 3 (2010).

Class 2A

Whiting 

Game 1: Wheeler vs. Bowman Academy.
Game 2: Lake Station Edison vs. Whiting.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Illiana Christian vs. Hammond Bishop Noll. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Noll 27 (2018), Wheeler 5 (2008), Lake Station Edison 4 (2005), Whiting 4 (2019), Bowman Academy 0, Illiana Christian 0.

Hebron 

Game 1: North Newton vs. Hebron.
Game 2: North Judson-San Pierre vs. Rensselaer Central. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Boone Grove vs. Winamac Community. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Boone Grove 13 (2018), North Newton 12 (2019), North Judson 8 (2006), Rensselaer Central 7 (2003), Hebron 4 (2017), Winamac 3 (1999).

Westview 

Game 1: LaVille vs. Bremen.
Game 2: Central Noble vs. Prairie Heights. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Fairfield vs. Westview. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Bremen 11 (2016), Westview 9 (2014), Fairfield 6 (2010), LaVille 4 (2019), Central Noble 3 (2012), Prairie Heights 2 (1984).

Eastside 

Game 1: Churubusco vs. Bluffton.
Game 2: South Adams vs. Woodlan.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Adams Central vs. Eastside. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Churubusco 10 (2015), South Adams 9 (2018), Adams Central 8 (2016), Bluffton 5 (2019), Eastside 5 (2018), Woodlan 2 (2006).

Wabash 

Game 1: Wabash vs. Carroll (Flora).
Game 2: Rochester Community vs. Lewis Cass. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Whitko vs. Manchester. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Rochester 11 (2014), Wabash 10 (2019), Manchester 9 (2016), Carroll 6 (2015), Lewis Cass 6 (2018), Whitko 1 (2017).

Delphi Community 

Game 1: Seeger vs. Western Boone.
Game 2: Lafayette Central Catholic vs. Clinton Prairie. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Delphi Community vs. Fountain Central. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Lafayette Central Catholic 17 (2018), Fountain Central 10 (2009), Delphi 5 (2019), Seeger 5 (2015), Clinton Prairie 4 (1993), Western Boone 2 (1983).

Eastern (Greentown) 

Game 1: Tipton vs. Eastbrook.
Game 2: Blackford vs. Madison-Grant.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Eastern (Greentown) vs. Taylor. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Blackford 17 (2017), Taylor 7 (2015), Tipton 7 (2009), Madison-Grant 6 (2012), Eastbrook 4 (2004), Eastern (Greentown) 2 (1999).

Lapel 

Game 1: Muncie Burris vs. Lapel.
Game 2: Monroe Central vs. Frankton.
Game 3: Alexandria Monroe vs. Winchester Community. 

Game 4: Wapahani vs. Elwood Community.
Game 5: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner.
Championship: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Wapahani 16 (2019), Alexandria 9 (2019), Elwood 8 (2014), Frankton 7 (2018), Lapel 7 (2015), Monroe Central 1 (2014), Muncie Burris 1 (1982), Winchester 1 (1986).

Centerville 

Game 1: Union County vs. Centerville.
Game 2: Shenandoah vs. Northeastern.
Game 3: Hagerstown vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Shenandoah 12 (2006), Hagerstown 11 (2019), Union County 8 (2018), Centerville 7 (2011), Northeastern 4 (2004).

Heritage Christian 

Game 1: Triton Central vs. Indianapolis Scecina. 

Game 2: Eastern Hancock vs. Heritage Christian. 

Game 3: Knightstown vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Scecina 9 (2019), Heritage Christian 8 (2017), Knightstown 6 (2016), Triton Central 3 (2012), Eastern Hancock 1 (1976).

Cascade 

Game 1: Monrovia vs. Park Tudor.
Game 2: Speedway vs. Cascade.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: University vs. Covenant Christian (Indianapolis). 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Speedway 9 (2019), Park Tudor 7 (2013), Cascade 6 (2005), University 4 (2019), Covenant Christian 2 (2018), Monrovia 0.

Southmont 

Game 1: South Putnam vs. Parke Heritage. 

Game 2: Cloverdale vs. North Putnam.
Game 3: Southmont vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Southmont 6 (2017), Cloverdale 4 (1984), North Putnam 4 (2007), South Putnam 4 (2010), Parke Heritage 0.

South Ripley 

Game 1: Switzerland County vs. Milan.
Game 2: North Decatur vs. South Ripley.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: South Decatur vs. Southwestern (Hanover). 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): South Ripley 7 (2008), Switzerland County 4 (2018), Milan 3 (2015), South Decatur 2 (1976), North Decatur 1 (2011), Southwestern 1 (1999).

Eastern (Pekin) 

Game 1: Henryville vs. Providence.
Game 2: Clarksville vs. Eastern (Pekin).
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Austin vs. Crawford County. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Providence 18 (2017), Clarksville 14 (2018), Austin 8 (2019), Henryville 6 (2008), Eastern 4 (2012), Crawford County 1 (1977).

Mitchell 

Game 1: South Knox vs. Linton-Stockton.
Game 2: Paoli vs. Mitchell.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: North Knox vs. Eastern Greene. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Mitchell 10 (2006), Linton-Stockton 9 (2017), Paoli 8 (1995), North Knox 6 (1998), Eastern Greene 5 (2013), South Knox 3 (2007).

Tell City 

Game 1: Tell City vs. Forest Park.
Game 2: Perry Central vs. South Spencer.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: North Posey vs. Evansville Mater Dei. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): South Spencer 23 (2017), Tell City 16 (1997), Evansville Mater Dei 12 (2014), North Posey 9 (2019), Forest Park 4 (2002), Perry Central 0.

Class 1A

Washington Township 

Game 1: Westville vs. Covenant Christian (DeMotte). 

Game 2: Kouts vs. Washington Township.
Game 3: Marquette Catholic vs. Morgan Township. 

Game 4: Hammond Academy of Science & Technology vs. 21st Century Gary. 

Game 5: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Championship: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Washington Township 9 (2019), Kouts 5 (2011), Morgan Township 4 (2018), Marquette Catholic 3 (2007), Covenant Christian 0, HAST 0, 21st Century 0, Westville 0.

LaCrosse 

Game 1: South Central (Union Mills) vs. Culver Community. 

Game 2: LaCrosse vs. Argos.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Oregon-Davis vs. Triton. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): South Central (Union Mills) 16 (2019), Culver Community 8 (2013), Triton 4 (2015), LaCrosse 3 (2002), Argos 1 (1998), Oregon-Davis 1 (1976).

Fremont 

Game 1: Fort Wayne Canterbury vs. Bethany Christian.
Game 2: Elkhart Christian Academy vs. Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian. 

Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Fremont vs. Lakewood Park Christian.
Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian 14 (2017), Fremont 7 (2019), Canterbury 2 (2014), Bethany Christian 1 (1987), Elkhart Christian 1 (2013), Lakewood Park Christian 0.

Caston 

Game 1: Southwood vs. Northfield. 

Game 2: West Central vs. Pioneer.
Game 3: North White vs. North Miami. 

Game 4: Caston vs. Game 1 winner. 

Game 5: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Championship: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Northfield 10 (2018), North White 10 (2016), Southwood 4 (2014), Caston 1 (2012), North Miami 1 (2019), Pioneer 1 (2016), West Central 1 (1975).

Riverton Parke 

Game 1: Covington vs. Attica.
Game 2: Faith Christian vs. North Vermillion. 

Game 3: Riverton Parke vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Covington 12 (2018), Riverton Parke 9 (2019), Attica 8 (2017), North Vermillion 5 (1997), Faith Christian 0.

Frontier 

Game 1: Rossville vs. Frontier.
Game 2: Sheridan vs. South Newton.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Tri-County vs. Clinton Central. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): South Newton 8 (2017), Frontier 7 (2014), Rossville 6 (2019), Tri-County 6 (2011), Clinton Central 1 (2005), Sheridan 1 (2004).

Liberty Christian 

Game 1: Liberty Christian vs. Wes-Del.
Game 2: Daleville vs. Tri-Central.
Game 3: Southern Wells vs. Anderson Preparatory. 

Game 4: Cowan vs. Game 1 winner.
Game 5: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner.
Championship: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Daleville 11 (2019), Cowan 6 (2010), Wes-Del 5 (2011), Tri-Central 3 (2004), Anderson Prep 0, Liberty Christian 0, Southern Wells 0.

Seton Catholic 

Game 1: Union City vs. Tri.
Game 2: Seton Catholic vs. Randolph Southern.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Blue River Valley vs. Cambridge City Lincoln. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Tri 4 (2007), Blue River Valley 3 (2019), Seton Catholic 3 (2014), Cambridge City Lincoln 2 (1994), Union City 2 (2018), Randolph Southern 1 (2010).

White River Valley 

Game 1: Clay City vs. Eminence.
Game 2: Shakamak vs. White River Valley.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: North Central (Farmersburg) vs. Bloomfield. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Shakamak 25 (2019), North Central (Farmersburg) 8 (2011), Bloomfield 2 (1971), Clay City 2 (2016), Eminence 1 (2005), White River Valley 1 (2014).

Bethesda Christian 

Game 1: Bethesda Christian vs. Providence Cristo Rey. 

Game 2: Tindley vs. Traders Point Christian.
Game 3: Indiana Deaf vs. Game 1 winner.
Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Bethesda Christian 2 (2011), Indiana Deaf 0, Providence Cristo Rey 0, Tindley 0, Traders Point 0, 

Morristown 

Game 1: Southwestern (Shelbyville) vs. Indianapolis Lutheran. 

Game 2: Greenwood Christian Academy vs. Edinburgh.
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner.
Game 4: Waldron vs. Morristown. 

Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Indianapolis Lutheran 13 (2019), Edinburgh 4 (2017), Greenwood Christian 3 (2016), Morristown 2 (2008), Southwestern 1 (1999), Waldron 1 (2001).

Jac-Cen-Del

Game 1: Oldenburg Academy vs. Trinity Lutheran. 

Game 2: Jac-Cen-Del vs. Rising Sun.
Game 3: Hauser vs. Game 1 winner.
Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Jac-Cen-Del 8 (2016), Rising Sun 7 (2019), Trinity Lutheran 6 (2019), Hauser 5 (2018), Oldenburg Academy 4 (2010).

South Central (Elizabeth) 

Game 1: Lanesville vs. Christian Academy of Indiana. 

Game 2: Orleans vs. South Central (Elizabeth).
Game 3: Borden vs. Game 1 winner.
Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Orleans 9 (2018), South Central (Elizabeth) 7 (2019), Lanesville 5 (2019), Borden 4 (2018), Christian Academy 2 (2009).

West Washington 

Game 1: Crothersville vs. New Washington.
Game 2: Shawe Memorial vs. West Washington. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Shawe Memorial 3 (2001), New Washington 1 (1998), Crothersville 0, West Washington 0, 

North Daviess 

Game 1: Shoals vs. Loogootee.
Game 2: Vincennes Rivet vs. North Daviess. 

Game 3: Barr-Reeve vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Loogootee 21 (1994), Barr-Reeve 12 (2019), North Daviess 7 (2015), Vincennes Rivet 9 (2014), Shoals 0.

Northeast Dubois 

Game 1: Northeast Dubois vs. Tecumseh.
Game 2: Wood Memorial vs. Cannelton.
Game 3: Springs Valley vs. Game 1 winner. 

Championship: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner. 

Titles Won (Most Recent): Springs Valley 17 (2004), Tecumseh 15 (2019), Northeast Dubois 10 (2017), Cannelton 5 (1993), Wood Memorial 3 (2011).

Regionals

Saturday, June 5

Class 4A

LaPorte 

Game 1: Chesterton winner vs. Merrillville winner. 

Game 2: Northridge winner vs. Plymouth winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Kokomo 

Game 1: Carroll (Fort Wayne) winner vs. Lafayette Jefferson winner. 

Game 2: Huntington North winner vs. Westfield winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Plainfield 

Game 1: Pendleton Heights winner vs. Franklin Central winner. 

Game 2: Ben Davis winner vs. Plainfield winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Jasper 

Game 1: Mooresville winner vs. Bloomington North winner. 

Game 2: New Albany winner vs. Evansville Reitz winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Class 3A

Griffith 

Game 1: Griffith winner vs. Northwestern winner.
Game 2: Kankakee Valley winner vs. South Bend Clay winner. Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Bellmont 

Game 1: Garrett winner vs. Yorktown winner. 

Game 2: Bellmont winner vs. Wawasee winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Danville 

Game 1: North Montgomery winner vs. Owen Valley winner. 

Game 2: Beech Grove winner vs. Brebeuf Jesuit winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Southridge 

Game 1: Silver Creek winner vs. Southridge winner.
Game 2: Evansville Bosse winner vs. Lawrenceburg winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Class 2A

Whiting 

Game 1: Eastside winner vs. Whiting winner. 

Game 2: Hebron winner vs. Westview winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Lafayette Central Catholic 

Game 1: Lapel winner vs. Eastern (Greentown) winner. 

Game 2: Delphi Community winner vs. Wabash winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Cascade 

Game 1: Cascade winner vs. Centerville winner.
Game 2: Heritage Christian winner vs. Southmont winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Evansville Mater Dei (Bosse Field) 

Game 1: South Ripley winner vs. Eastern (Pekin) winner. 

Game 2: Mitchell winner vs. Tell City winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Class 1A

South Bend Washington (Four Winds Field) 

Game 1: LaCrosse winner vs. Washington Township winner. 

Game 2: Caston winner vs. Fremont winner.
Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Carroll (Flora) 

Game 1: Seton Catholic winner vs. Liberty Christian winner. 

Game 2: Riverton Parke winner vs. Frontier winner. 

Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Morristown 

Game 1: White River Valley winner vs. Morristown winner. 

Game 2: Jac-Cen-Del winner vs. Bethesda Christian winner. Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Lanesville 

Game 1: North Daviess winner vs. Northeast Dubois winner. Game 2: South Central (Elizabeth) winner vs. West  Washington winner.
Championship: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner. 

Semistates

(Teams TBD)

Saturday, June 12

North 

LaPorte
Kokomo (Municipal Stadium) 

South 

Mooresville
Jasper (Ruxer Field) 

State Finals

Monday, June 21
Class TBA — North Semi-State winner vs. South Semi-State winner, 5 p.m. ET /4 p.m. CT.

Class TBA — North Semi-State winner vs. South Semi-State winner, 8 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. CT.

Tuesday, June 22
Class TBA — North Semi-State winner vs. South Semi-State winner, 5 p.m. ET/4 p.m. CT.

Class TBA — North Semi-State winner vs. South Semi-State winner, 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT.

IHSAA releases baseball state tournament series sites

By STEVE KRAH

http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Where is your team going come sectional time?

What if they make the regional or semistate?

Who hosts the semistates?

When are the State Finals planned?

Those questions were answered as IHSAA Executive Committee minutes from Feb. 19 were released March 8.

According to the IHSAA website, Assistant Commissioner Robert Faulkens reported on the general format, sites and other preliminary plans for the 2020-21 Baseball Tournament Series. 

Faulkens was notified by the Indianapolis Indians that their schedule is now set by Major League Baseball rather than the International League and has the team set for home games on the dates of this year’s IHSAA State Finals. The plan now will be to play this year’s state championship games on the following Monday and Tuesday (June 21-22). 

Earlier, the Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association announced its plans to have its Futures Game and North/South All-Star Series that same week in Evansville.

The first IHSAA practice date is March 15. The first contest date is March 29.

IHSAA TOURNAMENT

Sectionals
Class 4A
1. Merrillville (6): East Chicago Central, Hammond Morton, Highland, Lake Central, Merrillville, Munster.
2. Chesterton (7): Andrean, Chesterton, Crown Point, Hobart, Lowell, Portage, Valparaiso.
3. Plymouth (6): LaPorte, Michigan City, Mishawaka, Plymouth, South Bend Adams, South Bend Riley.
4. Northridge (6): Concord, Elkhart, Goshen, Northridge, Penn, Warsaw Community.
5. Carroll (Fort Wayne) (5): Carroll (Fort Wayne), DeKalb, East Noble, Fort Wayne Northrop, Fort Wayne Snider

6. Huntington North (6): Columbia City, Fort Wayne North Side, Fort Wayne South Side, Fort Wayne Wayne, Homestead, Huntington North.
7. Lafayette Jefferson (5): Harrison (West Lafayette), Kokomo, Lafayette Jefferson, Logansport, McCutcheon.
8. Westfield (6): Carmel, Fishers, Hamilton Southeastern, Noblesville, Westfield, Zionsville.
9. Pendleton Heights (6): Anderson, Greenfield-Central, Mt. Vernon (Fortville), Muncie Central, Pendleton Heights, Richmond.

10. Ben Davis (7): Ben Davis, Indianapolis Arsenal Technical, Indianapolis Cathedral, Lawrence Central, Lawrence North, North Central (Indianapolis), Pike
11. Warren Central (6): Franklin Central, New Palestine, Perry Meridian, , Roncalli, Southport, Warren Central.
12. Plainfield (6): Avon, Brownsburg, Decatur Central, Plainfield, Terre Haute North Vigo, Terre Haute South Vigo.
13. Mooresville (6): Center Grove, Franklin Community, Greenwood Community, Martinsville, Mooresville, Whiteland Community.
14. Bloomington North (6): Bloomington North, Bloomington South, Columbus East, Columbus North, East Central, Shelbyville.
15. New Albany (6): Bedford North Lawrence, Floyd Central, Jeffersonville, Jennings County, New Albany, Seymour.
16. Evansville F.J. Reitz (6): Castle, Evansville Central, Evansville F.J. Reitz, Evansville Harrison, Evansville North, Jasper.

Class 3A
17. Griffith (6): Calumet, Gary West Side, Griffith, Hammond, Hammond Clark, Hammond Gavit.
18. Kankakee Valley (6): Culver Academies, Glenn, Hanover Central, Kankakee Valley, Knox, River Forest.
19. South Bend Clay (5): Mishawaka Marian, New Prairie, South Bend Clay, South Bend Saint Joseph, South Bend Washington.
20. Northwestern (7): Benton Central, Maconaquah, Northwestern, Peru, Twin Lakes, West Lafayette, Western.

21. Wawasee (6): Jimtown, Lakeland, NorthWood, Tippecanoe Valley, Wawasee, West Noble.
22. Garrett (7): Angola, Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger, Fort Wayne Bishop Luers, Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran, Garrett, Leo, New Haven.
23. Bellmont (6): Bellmont, Heritage, Marion, Mississinewa, Norwell, Oak Hill.
24. Yorktown (6): Delta, Guerin Catholic, Hamilton Heights, Jay County, New Castle, Yorktown.
25. North Montgomery (6): Crawfordsville, Frankfort, Lebanon, North Montgomery, Northview, South Vermillion.

26. Brebeuf Jesuit (5): Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory, Danville Community, Greencastle, Indianapolis Cardinal Ritter, Tri-West Hendricks.
27. Beech Grove (5): Beech Grove, Herron, Indianapolis Bishop Chatard, Indianapolis Emmerich Manual, Indianapolis Shortridge.
28. Owen Valley (6): Brown County, Edgewood, Indian Creek, Owen Valley, Sullivan, West Vigo.
29. Lawrenceburg (7): Batesville, Connersville, Franklin County, Greensburg, Lawrenceburg, Rushville Consolidated, South Dearborn.
30. Silver Creek (8): Brownstown Central, Charlestown, Corydon Central, Madison Consolidated, North Harrison, Salem, Scottsburg, Silver Creek.
31. Southridge (6): Gibson Southern, Pike Central, Princeton Community, Southridge, Vincennes Lincoln, Washington 

32. Evansville Bosse (5): Boonville, Evansville Bosse, Evansville Reitz Memorial, Heritage Hills, Mt. Vernon.

Class 2A
33. Whiting (6): Bowman Leadership Academy, Gary Roosevelt, Hammond Bishop Noll, Lake Station Edison, Wheeler, Whiting.

34. Hebron (6): Boone Grove, Hebron, North Judson-San Pierre, North Newton, Rensselaer Central, Winamac Community.
35. Westview (6): Bremen, Central Noble, Fairfield, LaVille, Prairie Heights, Westview.
36. Eastside (6): Adams Central, Bluffton, Churubusco, Eastside, South Adams, Woodlan.
37. Wabash (6): Carroll (Flora), Lewis Cass, Manchester, Rochester Community, Wabash, Whitko.
38. Delphi (6): Clinton Prairie, Delphi Community, Fountain Central, Lafayette Central Catholic, Seeger, Western Boone.
39. Eastern (Greentown) (6): Blackford, Eastbrook, Eastern (Greentown), Madison-Grant, Taylor, Tipton.
40. Lapel (8): Alexandria Monroe, Elwood Community, Frankton, Lapel, Monroe Central, Muncie Burris, Wapahani, Winchester Community.
41. Centerville (5): Centerville, Hagerstown, Northeastern, Shenandoah, Union County.
42. Heritage Christian (6): Eastern Hancock, Heritage Christian, Indianapolis Scecina Memorial, Knightstown, Triton Central.
43. Cascade (6): Cascade, Covenant Christian (Indpls), Monrovia, Park Tudor, Speedway, University.
44. Southmont (5): Cloverdale, North Putnam, Parke Heritage, South Putnam, Southmont.
45. South Ripley (6): Milan, North Decatur, South Decatur, South Ripley, Southwestern (Hanover), Switzerland County.
46. Eastern (Pekin) (6): Austin, Clarksville, Crawford County, Eastern (Pekin), Henryville, Providence.

47. Mitchell (6): Eastern Greene, Linton-Stockton, Mitchell, North Knox, Paoli, South Knox.
48. Tell City (6): Evansville Mater Dei, Forest Park, North Posey, Perry Central, South Spencer, Tell City.

Class 1A
49. Washington Township (8): 21st Century Charter-Gary, Covenant Christian (DeMotte), Hammond Academy of Science & Technology, Kouts, Marquette Catholic, Morgan Township, Washington Township, Westville.

50. LaCrosse (7): Argos, Culver Community, LaCrosse, Oregon-Davis, South Bend Career Academy, South Central (Union Mills), Triton.
51. Fremont (7): Bethany Christian, Elkhart Christian Academy, Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian, Fort Wayne Canterbury, Fremont, Hamilton, Lakewood Park Christian
52. Caston (7): Caston, North Miami, North White, Northfield, Pioneer, Southwood, West Central.
53. Riverton Parke (5): Attica, Covington, Faith Christian, North Vermillion, Riverton Parke.
54. Frontier (6): Clinton Central, Frontier, Rossville, Sheridan, South Newton, Tri-County.
55. Liberty Christian (7): Anderson Preparatory Academy, Cowan, Daleville, Liberty Christian, Southern Wells, Tri-Central, Wes-Del.
56. Seton Catholic (6): Blue River Valley, Cambridge City Lincoln, Randolph Southern, Seton Catholic, Tri, Union City.
57. White River Valley (6): Bloomfield, Clay City, Eminence, North Central (Farmersburg), Shakamak, White River Valley
58. Bethesda Christian (6): Bethesda Christian, Indiana School for the Deaf, Irvington Preparatory Academy, Providence Cristo Rey, Tindley, Traders Point Christian.
59. Morristown (6): Edinburgh, Greenwood Christian Academy, Indianapolis Lutheran, Morristown, Southwestern (Shelbyville), Waldron.
60. Jac-Cen-Del (6): Hauser, Jac-Cen-Del, Oldenburg Academy, Rising Sun, Trinity Lutheran.
61. South Central (Elizabeth) (5): Borden, Christian Academy of Indiana, Lanesville, Orleans, South Central (Elizabeth).
62. West Washington (4): Crothersville, New Washington, Shawe Memorial, West Washington.
63. North Daviess (5): Barr-Reeve, Loogootee, North Daviess, Shoals, Vincennes Rivet.
64. Northeast Dubois (5): Cannelton, Northeast Dubois, Springs Valley, Tecumseh, Wood Memorial.

Regionals 

Class 4A 

1. LaPorte
Feeder Sectionals: Chesterton, LaPorte, Merrillville, Northridge.
2. Kokomo
Feeder Sectionals: DeKalb, Huntington North, Lafayette Jefferson, Westfield.
3. Plainfield
Feeder Sectionals: Ben Davis Pendleton Heights, Terre Haute South Vigo, Warren Central.
4. Jasper
Feeder Sectionals: Bloomington North, Evansville F.J. Reitz, Jennings County, Mooresville.

Class 3A 

5. Griffith
Feeder Sectionals: Griffith, Kankakee Valley, South Bend Clay, Northwestern.
6. Bellmont
Feeder Sectionals: Wawasee, Garrett, Bellmont, Yorktown.
7. Danville
Feeder Sectionals: Beech Grove, Brebeuf Jesuit, North Montgomery, Owen Valley.
8. Southridge
Feeder Sectionals: Evansville Bosse, Lawrenceburg, Silver Creek, Southridge.

Class 2A
9. Whiting 

Feeder Sectionals: Whiting, Eastside, Hebron, Westview.

10. Lafayette Central Catholic
Feeder Sectionals: Delphi, Eastern (Greentown), Lapel, Wabash.
11. Park Tudor/Cascade
Feeder Sectionals: Cascade, Centerville, Heritage Christian, Southmont.
12. Evansville Mater Dei (Bosse Field)
Feeder Sectionals: Eastern (Pekin), Mitchell, South Ripley, Tell City.

Class 1A 

13. South Bend Washington
Feeder Sectionals: Caston, Fremont, LaCrosse, Washington Township.
14. Carroll (Flora)
Feeder Sectionals: Frontier, Liberty Christian, Riverton Parke, Seton Catholic.
15. Morristown
Feeder Sectionals: Bethesda Christian, Jac-Cen-Del, Morristown, White River Valley.
16. Lanesville
Feeder Sectionals: North Daviess, Northeast Dubois, South Central (Elizabeth), West Washington.

Semi-States 

1. LaPorte
2. Kokomo
3. Mooresville 

4. Jasper 

State Finals 

Victory Field (Indianapolis), 501 W. Maryland Street, Indianapolis
The eight (8) winning teams of the semi-state tourneys shall constitute the participants in the state tourney. 

Two generations of Stanskis lead Fort Wayne Bishop Luers baseball

RBILOGOSMALL copy

BY STEVE KRAH

http://www.IndianaRBI.com

Only four men have held the title of head baseball coach at Bishop Luers High School in Fort Wayne, Ind.

One family represents bookends.

Entering his third season in charge of the Knights in 2020, Jeff Stanski is part of a legacy that started with his father, Ron Stanski, and also includes  Gary Rogers and Larry Gerardot.

Ron Stanski played at Saint Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, Ind., and got the baseball program at Fort Wayne Central Catholic running smoothly and won a sectional title in 1970.

When CC closed and Luers opened, the elder Stanski was there to get the program started in 1973. He went on to serve as a baseball and football coach at Harding High School in Fort Wayne and was athletic director at Luers before retirement.

Rogers followed Ron Stanski, led the Knights for 32 years and is now head coach at Leo (Ind.) High School.

“They were into fundamentals, playing the right way and working hard,” says Jeff Stanski of his head coach predecessors.

Now in his mid-70s, Ron Stanski is part of son Jeff’s coaching staff.

“He is a great resource to fall back on,” says Jeff Stanski, who played baseball for Luers and graduated in 1992, got a degree from DePauw University in Greencastle, Ind. in 1996, and is now teachers U.S. History, Economics and Leadership at his high school alma mater.

Jeff Stanski is also offensive coordinator for a Luers football program which features Kyle Lindsay as head coach. Previous football coaching stops include assistant gigs at Luers, Tri-State University (now Trine University) and Fort Wane Snider High School.

Stanski has five baseball assistants.

“I have a great staff around me,” says Stanski.

Besides his father and “right-hand man” Tim Birkmeier, there’s former professional pitcher Pedro Hernandez, Luers graduate and former Michigan State player Larry Young as well as Ray Pickard and Miles Martinez.

Luers plays its home games on the turf at the World Baseball Academy.

“They treat us great out there,” says Stanski. “And I know how much time most coaches have to spend keeping the grounds up.

“I know coaches that every Sunday mow their baseball field. It’s a big time commitment.”

Luers (enrollment around 520) is a member of the Summit Athletic Conference (with Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran, Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger, Fort Wayne North Side, Fort Wayne Northrop, Fort Wayne Snider, Fort Wayne South Side and Fort Wayne Wayne as baseball-playing schools).

The Knights are part of an IHSAA Class 3A sectional grouping with Angola, Dwenger, Concordia, Garrett, Leo and New Haven. Luers has won seven sectional crowns — the last in 2012. Luers reigned as 2008 Class 2A state champions.

Kevin Kiemaier, who roams center fielder for the Tampa Bay Rays, is a Luers graduate. Some current players go to alum and former big league pitcher Mike Roesler.

Recent Luers graduates that moved on to college baseball include Evan Creager (Goshen College), Mikhail McCowin (University of Saint Francis) and Tyler Prince (University of Saint Francis). From the Class of 2019, Grant Lashure went to Ivy Tech Northeast in Fort Wayne, Karsten Ball became a redshirt freshman at Purdue Fort Wayne and valedictorian and Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association all-star Josh Dippold joined the club team at the University of Notre Dame.

While they have not made any college commitments, Stanski says seniors Nick Birkmeier and Carter Pickard and junior Lukas North have drawn interest.

Luers is fed by several Catholic grade schools. Stanski says that while the school is diverse, many did come from one of those feeder schools.

Jeff and Sara Stanski have three children. Freshman Charlie Stanski is a Luers freshman who plays football and baseball. Daughter Sophie Stanski is an eighth grader who plays volleyball and basketball. First grader Sam Stanski plays baseball.

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Jeff Stanski is the head baseball coach at Bishop Luers High School in Fort Wayne, Ind. (Bishop Luers Photo)