March 6, 2010
Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran Wins First State Championship
The No. 8 Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran Cadets opened Saturday’s Class 3A state championship game with a scorching 10-0 run, fueled by six early points from senior center Erynn Meiklejohn, and that proved to be the difference. The Cadets held off multiple comeback attempts by No. 1 Rushville to win, 59-48, and earn the school’s first girls basketball state title.
Meiklejohn, who finished as the Cadets’ leading scorer with 16 points, was a dominant presence inside early, while senior guard Angela Doerffler was nearly her equal on the perimeter, and Concordia led 14-13 after one period.
Rushville, however, was unwilling to yield their No. 1 ranking without a fight. Senior forward Shelbie Justice scored 10 of her game-high 18 points in the first half, and her 6-of-6 free throw shooting pushed the Lady Lions to a one-point advantage at the break.
The second half was dominated by the Cadets, under the leadership of guard Andrea Newbauer, who filled the stat sheet with 11 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals. Newbauer’s steal, coast-to-coast drive for a layup, and free throw after a foul on the shot extended Concordia’s game-changing run to 9-0 and a 46-37 lead after three. Junior Anna Goeglein also contributed 10 of her 12 points in the second half.
Melissa Marlow’s Rushville Lady Lions, who drop to 25-3 on the season, also received contributions from senior Alexa Bess, whose two fourth-quarter three-pointers kept hope alive for the Lady Lions, and guard Morgan Herbert, who dropped in 10 points. The Cadets, under the direction of head coach Dave Miller, finish the year with a record of 24-3.
Concordia's Angela Doerffler Named Mental Attitude Award Winner
Following the game, members of the IHSAA Executive Committee named Angela Doerffler of Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran High School as the winner of the Patricia L. Roy Mental Attitude Award.
The award is presented annually to a senior participant in each classification who was nominated by her principal and coach and has demonstrated excellence in mental attitude, scholarship, leadership and athletic ability.
Doerffler served as captain of this year’s squad and was recently named to the All-Summit Athletic Conference First Team. The talented athlete will earn 12 varsity letter awards from Concordia; four each in soccer, basketball and softball.
She has been a youth camp instructor for basketball, soccer, and softball at Concordia and is an active member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. She is a Sertoma Award winner, an award bestowed upon a student at Concordia who exhibits exemplary acts of service. A member of the National Honor Society, Doerffler owns a 3.9 GPA and is ranked in the top 5% in her class.
Angela is the daughter of Dean and Barb of Fort Wayne. She plans to attend Valparaiso University beginning next fall.
Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, the IHSAA’s corporate partner, will present a $1,000 scholarship to Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran in the name of Angela Doerffler.
The award is named in honor of the former IHSAA assistant commissioner Patricia L. Roy, who oversaw the girls basketball state tournament from its inception in 1976 until her retirement in 1999.
Concordia Lutheran Head Coach Dave Miller
“Near the end of the second quarter I thought we kind of lost our composure. We came out in the third, made some defensive stops and took a couple of charges.”
“We talked at half about how good we were defending during the season and that we needed to step that up. We were getting ourselves in foul trouble and letting them get to the rim, making lay ups and shooting free throws.”
“One of the other things we struggled with was rebounding. Rushville is so physical, they really crashed the boards and hurt us.”
“Coming out in the second half I thought we had good composure. We made a couple shots and had a couple stops then it just kind of grew. Everyone picked up on that and we were okay. We had a lot of contribution from a lot of people today, four in double figures. It’s been that way all year. People step up at different times.”
On the lack of close games in the tournament: “It really surprised me. At some point you’re not going to have some sort of last second situation. All week we kept thinking today was going to be that day. At the end of the games, it’s been sort of a comfort zone.”
On team chemistry: “What makes them as good as they are is their work ethic and attitude. They get along and enjoy being with each other. That chemistry is all important.
Rushville Head Coach Melissa Marlow
“We like to play a fast-paced game and get up and down the floor. Today we weren’t putting the ball in the hoop and it made it hard to play our game.”
“Our press helped us get a lead at halftime. Obviously they talked about that at halftime and did a wonderful job in converting our pressure into points. Concordia did a good job in the second half of breaking our press and converting it into points. They didn’t do that as well in the first half.”
“They are a very solid team and play defense extremely well. They take care of the ball very well and are very balanced on offense. We wanted to play at a fast pace. They made runs and converted them into points. We made runs and couldn’t convert enough points.”
“The first quarter we were extremely tight and nervous. We knew we could drive the ball on them and have them follow us. We didn’t make our points from the free throw line and didn’t make our lay ups like we should have.”
“These five seniors made a pact in the fourth grade to make it to the state finals. They had a dream come true. They’re disappointed right now, but I’m extremely proud of them.”
“We got back to the tradition of Lady Lion basketball that Cinda Rice Brown started. Rushville basketball is back on the map.”