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With the tournament comes the tidbits

Posted Friday, February 3, 2012, at 11:48 PM

As you've probably guessed by now, the IHSAA is getting ready to begin the process of crowning a state champion in girls basketball.

Just as I've done in the past, I thought I would lay out some facts and figures for you to ponder as the days to the sectional slowly fade away.

This year marks the 37th time the ladies will take their shot at immortality.

The window for games to be played begins Monday, Feb. 6 and continues until Saturday, Feb. 11.

Regionals are slated for Feb. 18 and semistates for Feb. 25.

Don't forget this year's state finals will be played at the Hulman Center in Terre Haute on Saturday March 3.

Regional sites for our local sectionals include Southwestern (Shelbyville) for the winner at Clay City in Class A where they will meet the winner from Jac-Cen-Del in the second game after the winners from Bethesda Christian and Morristown meet.

The Class 2A winner at Bloomfield will take part in the first game of the day at Paoli where they will battle the survivor from Forest Park.

The second game that day will feature the winners from Eastern (Pekin) and South Ripley squaring off.

Just in case you're interested, the south half of the semistate will take place at either Southport or Bedford North Lawrence.

The regional champs will be notified of their destination on Sunday, Feb. 19.

According to the IHSAA there are a record 398 schools involved in this year's tourney. That includes a total of 5,359 student-athletes who will be involved in a total of 394 games in 27 days.

Those numbers break down further to 101 schools in Class 4A and 3A, 100 in 2A and 96 in A.

That total number of schools bumps the record by one school which was established last season. That new entry comes from the halls of the 21st Century Charter -- Gary.

They will join the Class A field and take part in the Washington Township Sectional, No. 49 for those of you out there keeping score.

Just for the record and to refresh your memory, the defending state champs are: In Class A Vincennes Rivet, Class 2A Ft. Wayne Bishop Luers, in Class 3A Evansville Memorial and in Class 4A Jeffersonville.

Of all of the 64 sectionals that make up the annual shindig for the trophy, only a handful of schools won their first sectional title last year.

Bowman Academy -- who moved up from Class A to 2A this year -- was joined by Edinburgh and Tindley (both in Class A then and now).

The longest current active sectional title streak belongs to Northeast Dubois who has won nine straight.

That's only half of the current state record of 18 held by Rushville between 1980 and 1987.

Next on the list of current active streaks come Elkhart Memorial and Ft. Wayne Canterbury who have won eight in a row.

Currently on a six-game sectional run is Lafayette Central Catholic followed by Ben Davis, Garrett, Southern Wells and Winchester who have won titles the last five years.

Checking in with four straight are Ft. Wayne Luers, Turkey Run and Rivet followed by Benton Central, Griffith, Jac-Cen-Del, Mooresville, Pendleton Heights, Roncalli and Wabash with three straight.

On the opposite end of the spectrum there are 46 teams, including the Lady Lakers of Shakamak, who have never lifted the sectional trophy above their heads.

Rushville is not only the record holder for the most consecutive sectional titles, but they also claim the mark for the most girls basketball sectionals won overall.

They have won 27 which is just four ahead of Ben Davis who sits second with 23 titles.

NorthWood is third with 21 followed by Bedford North Lawrence, Kokomo and Valparaiso with 20.

Next on the list with 18 total titles are Ft. Wayne Bishop Luers, Huntington North and local Class 2A participant Sullivan.

Then with 17 come Center Grove, Columbia City, Crown Point, Jasper and New Castle.

Ticket prices, which are established by the IHSAA, are $6 per session or $10 for all sessions and can be purchased at the sectional site.

Good luck to all area teams and may the best teams win.

Rick is a sports writer for the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached by telephone at (812) 847-4487. He can also be reached by email at rcurl@gcdailyworld.com.

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