Harris has asterisk beside blocked shots honor
The published numbers of the IHSAA state leaders in certain statistical categories have always had one problem -- not every school gets the numbers in on time, and some schools do not publish their numbers. Most of the time a school that has a player at the top of one of the statistical categories will get them published, so there is rarely an argument regarding who actually leads the state. But there is a high school player who is leading the state in blocked shots, and it is not the IHSAA published leader, Amber Harris.
Harris is credited with an average of 4.0 blocks per game through 14 games, according to the IHSAA official stats site, Stats & Go. But according to Restoration Christian's Bill Paro, the head coach of a Class A program that does not submit their stats to the IHSAA or Stats & Go, Restoration junior center Elana Eickholtz leads the state. By far. Eickholtz, in her first full season as a varsity player, is averaging 13.7 points and 10.8 rebounds per game. She also had an amazing 104 more blocks through 14 games than Harris, and currently averages 10 blocks per game. The 6'4 lefty uses a 79-inch wingspan to average the triple-double. Paro is working on teaching Eickholtz to catch her own block instead of just swatting it away.
Amber Harris and Ta'Shia Phillips are certainly not strangers to Mackey Arena, but one of Purdue's Ohio targets paid a visit on Sunday for the Northwestern game. In attendance was 6'1 junior wing Kristin Daugherty, sitting along side her mother, father, and sister. Bloomington North's Alex Guyton also paid another visit to Mackey. Another new face was 6'2 wing Becca Bruszewski of Wheeler (Ind.), who sat sandwiched between Guyton and Phillips during the game.
Bruszewski, who also holds school records in kills and blocks on the Bearcat volleyball team, has the versatility to play some interior as well as handle the ball on the perimeter. Bruszewski played AAU ball last summer with Indiana Elite with Notre Dame-bound Melissa Lechlitner and Tennessee-bound Sydney Smallbone. In one of the showcase games during last summer's Summer Slam in Fishers against a loaded Queen City Jaguars team (Myia McCurdy), Bruszewski led her team in scoring and I'm pretty sure picks too. Bruszewski struck me as the player that really made the Indiana Elite offense work by setting screens, picking defenders, and using muscle against Queen City's interior height. Bruszewski currently ranks seventh in the state in scoring with a 22.0 average, yet works very hard in getting other scorers open.
Malone season averages
Through 17 games, FahKara Malone is averaging 20.5 points per game. She is shooting 106-of-214 from the field (.495), 26-of-85 from the perimeter (.306), and 58-of-81 from the line (.716).
A few Chicago area 2007 players formerly on Purdue's watch list have reduced their lists.
Fenwick's Alison Jackson has a final eight that includes Illinois, Ohio State, Notre Dame, Iowa, Minnesota, Marquette, Northwestern and Michigan.
Fenwick teammate Devereaux Peters is more wide open, and has Illinois, Notre Dame, Wisconsin, Marquette, Stanford, UCLA, California, USC, Maryland, Northwestern, Iowa, Georgetown and others holding her interest.
Lastly, Von Steuben point guard Tatiana Ortiz has a final seven of St. Louis, Missouri, Central Florida, Kentucky, Wisconsin, UMarquette and Alabama Birmingham.
"Everything starts with FahKara Malone. She is such a good all-around player. She guards well, she rebounds and she has the all-around game. Memorial goes as she goes." -- Evansville Central coach Mike Powless on preparing for No. 5 Evansville Memorial and FahKara Malone.