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January 18, 2013

No. 4 Logan girls host Richmond for key NCC game

Whitney Jennings eclipsed 1,500 point mark last week.

Logansport’s girls basketball team might have put together its best game of the season in last week’s win at Benton Central, which entered ranked No. 1 in Class 3A.

Also during that contest, Logan junior Whitney Jennings eclipsed the 1,500 point mark for her career. The 5-foot-5 point guard has now scored 1,552 points and is rapidly climbing up the state’s all-time leaderboard to go with her outstanding assist totals.

Jennings is averaging 24.2 points and 8.1 assists per game this season. She has a chance to catch Logan all-time leading scorer Jasmine Penny before the end of this season. Penny scored 1,784 points. At her current scoring rate this season, Jennings would catch Penny in 10 more games. Logan has five more regular season games left, so the Berries would have to reach the regional final or semistate round, depending on whether or not they draw a bye in sectional play. The tournament draw is on Jan. 27.

“Well, we’ve got a ball waiting for her whenever she passes Jasmine up,” Logan coach Jerry Hoover said.

There’s a good chance Jennings will also catch Richmond’s Lisa Shepherd, who is the all-time leading scorer in the NCC at 2,140 points. Shepherd is 15th overall in state history. Wawasee’s Shanna Zolman is the state’s all-time leading scorer at 3,085 points.

Logan’s overall all-time leading scorer is Caleb Springer on the boys side with 2,042 points. New Castle’s Steve Alford is the NCC’s boys all-time leading scorer at 2,116 points. Damon Bailey is the state’s overall all-time leading scorer at 3,134 points.

Jennings isn’t the only member of her family making waves for the Berries this season. Her sister, Rachel Jennings, leads the state in made 3-point baskets (51), and her 46.4 shooting percentage from 3-point land ranks third in the state among players with at least 50 attempts.

Rachel Jennings is averaging 15.1 ppg. Nakeya Penny, Jasmine’s younger sister, is averaging 13.9 ppg and 6.4 rebounds per contest. Kiley Victor is averaging 4.5 ppg and 7.4 rpg. Madyson Price adds 4.4 ppg.

Seanna Redman, who suffered a torn ACL injury on Dec. 15 during a game at Anderson, originally had surgery scheduled for this week but has since changed her mind. She is undergoing physical therapy, and that, along with modern brace technology, could help her return to the court this season with the use of a brace to help stabilize her injured knee. Redman, a 5-9 senior, started in the Berries’ first 10 games before her injury.

“Everything I hear from the trainer is she’s doing well and when I talk to her, she feels like it’s getting a lot stronger and everything,” Hoover said. “She’s in therapy now and she’s hoping to come back for the tournament and maybe a couple games before that. I’m hoping she’ll be able to come back [before the tournament], because just coming back and getting in the tournament, it won’t work very well. But if she would happen to get a game in or two before that, then she can get back into it.”

The Class 4A No. 4 Berries (16-0, 5-0 North Central Conference) host Richmond (9-9, 2-3) tonight for a key league game. The Berries can clinch at least a share of the NCC title with a win.

The Red Devils are led by sophomore guard Mackenzie Taylor, who is averaging 22.2 ppg. Brooklyn Taylor adds 9.5 ppg. In her last three games, Mackenzie Taylor has scored 35, 34 and 19 points.

“They’re bigger than we are. We’re going to have to press them some and we’re going to have to get after them,” Hoover said.

The Logan coach praised Richmond coach Casey Pohlenz.

“The guy is really a good coach. He coached in the Southwest in the junior college game, and he’s coached with a guy I’ve coached with for years in Earl Diddle. He’s really tuned into that junior college scene in the Southwest, and that is very good basketball,” Hoover said. “He has them very well prepared. Every time we’ve played them he has them very well prepared.”

Logan hosts South Bend St. Joseph’s (5-9) for a 2:30 p.m. varsity start on Saturday. The Indians are a defending regional finalist in Class 3A and were the Class 3A state champs in 2005.

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