March 8, 2014

Bedford North Lawrence collects second straight Class 4A title
The Bedford North Lawrence Stars maintained their position atop the mountain in Class 4A girls basketball.

The Stars captured their second consecutive state championship and fourth overall with a hard-fought 51-41 victory over the Penn Kingsmen. The Stars finished 27-1 this season and have amassed an impressive 55-1 record over the past two seasons.

Bedford North Lawrence broke open a close game late in the third and early in the fourth quarter. Brittani Rizzi connected on a trio of 3-point shots and the Stars bolted to a 13-point lead, 42-29, with 6 ½ minutes left in the game. Penn got no closer than nine thereafter.

The Stars put three players in double-digit scoring: Rizzi with 17, Jenna Allen with 12 and Dominique McBryde with 11. Allen grabbed 14 rebounds and McBryde collected 12.

The Kingsmen were led by Jessi Alexander's 11 points. Caroline Buhr had 11 rebounds.

Coach Damon Bailey's Stars were ranked second in the girls coaches' poll. Bailey, in his first season as head coach of the Stars' girls team, is Indiana's career scoring leader with 3,134 points at Bedford North Lawrence from 1987 to '90.

Coach Kristi Kaniewski Ulrich's Kingsmen, rated fourth in the coaches' poll, finished their season at 25-2.

Whitney Wilson wins Patricia L. Roy Mental Attitude Award
Following the game, members of the IHSAA Executive Committee named Whitney Wilson of Bedford North Lawrence High School as the winner of the Patricia L. Roy Mental Attitude Award in Class 4A Girls Basketball.

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.

Academically, she ranks among the best students in her class. She is an active member of the Avoca Baptist Church, holds a part-time job and volunteers at a local middle school’s summer basketball camp. She is a member of the I-Care Council and has helped with Special Olympics in the Lawrence County area.

Besides basketball, Wilson has earned three varsity letters in track and field, qualifying for regionals in the 100 hurdles and 1600 meter relay, and one letter in softball.

She is the daughter of Jay and Tina Wilson of Springville and plans to study Physical Therapy and play basketball at Asbury University.

The Indiana Fever and Indiana Pacers, the presenting sponsor of the IHSAA Girls Basketball State Tournament, presented a $1,000 scholarship to Bedford North Lawrence High School in the name of Whitney Wilson. Since 1989, more than $800,000 in college scholarships have been presented to deserving high school athletes in Indiana.

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.