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Monday, December 10, 2018
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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 12
    Monday, December 10, 2018 4:00 AM
    The Purple Flyers piloted by Bob Tandy, had a great year in 1961-62 as they won New Market’s sixth Montgomery County Basketball title, dethroning the New Ross Bluejays 62-59 to bring home the trophy and the County Keg. The team of 1962 included Joe Chamness, Steve Powers, Marion Carr, Gary Hood, Phil Merrill, Ronnie Miles, Jerry Vaughn, Jim Long, Jim Booton, and Phil Carr. The Flyers were led in scoring that year by Steve Powers who was also an outstanding pitcher recording nine no-hitters for the baseball team. Powers scored 414 points that year for an average of 18.4 per game. He had a high game of 37 points against Dover that year.
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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 11
    Monday, December 3, 2018 4:00 AM
    In 1957, New Market entered the building that would serve the Purple Flyers until consolidation in 1971. They dedicated the building on November 5, 1957, before approximately 1400 spectators. They celebrated the occasion by beating Waveland 36-35. That team went on to win New Market’s fifth County Championship again defeating Waveland in the final game.
    John Lytle was the leading scorer on the County Champs that year as he netted 369 points in 22 games for an average of 16.8 ppg. Lytle would finish with 620 points in his 46 game career. The other players were Fred Deck, Ralph Jarvis, John Sayler, Ed Stephens, Bob Swank, Mike Hockersmith, Jack Howard, John Keller, Vaughn Poynter, J. T. Stickler, and Dennis Wray.
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  • Monday, November 26, 2018 4:00 AM
    Here is the HOF bio for Red Gardner.
    “High School—New Market High School 1941: College: Wabash/ DePauw University 1948. New Market Purple Flyers won the county championship three consecutive years with Red Gardner on the team. Named to the Coaches All-Sectional team in 1941. Attended Wabash College two years prior to enlistment in the U.S. Navy where he was selected for Officers Training Program. Admitted to DePauw University in 1946 where he earned Little All-American Honors two years. All-State selection two years, and was leading scorer for three years. Played with the Minneapolis Lakers pro championship team 1948-49. From the New Market Purple Flyers to the Minneapolis Lakers with a war to interrupt is a long road to travel, but Red handled it well. Coached 25 years of high school basketball in Ohio, retiring in 1983.”
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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 9
    Monday, November 19, 2018 4:00 AM
    The New Market Purple Flyers prominence began in the late 30’s when one of their own graduates, Harold E. (Jack) Hester returned home to coach basketball. Jack played for New Market in the early 30’s graduating in 1934. He then moved up the road to Wabash College as did many of the early Montgomery County graduates. Jack lettered in basketball for three years under the legendary Pete Vaughan, captaining the Little Giants in his senior year. After graduation, Jack returned to New Market and led the Purple Flyers to three straight County Championships in 1939, 1940 and 1941. He loaned the hardware to Bowers in 1942 as the Flyers reloaded then reclaimed the title in 1943, their fourth in five years. The Purple Flyers were led in the first three crowns by three players who played on all three championship teams. The three were Earl (Red) Gardner, Jr., Bud Marts, and Bill Etter. After graduation, Jr. Gardner and Bill Etter went to Wabash for two years before joining the service. After service, Bill Etter returned to Wabash graduating in 1948. He returned to New Market and joined his father and brother in the family automotive business which still exists today. Etter Ford has been a familiar name in Montgomery County for almost 100 years. Bill’s father Lloyd B. Etter and his uncle Ray Etter also played basketball at New Market and Wabash in the middle and late teens. Lloyd lettered in football at Wabash in 1918 and 1919 and basketball in 1920. Brother Roy lettered at Wabash in basketball in 1920. Nancy Gardner (Rogers) told me a story illustrating the love that the Etter Ford Company had for the New Market community in those early days
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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 8
    Monday, November 5, 2018 4:00 AM
    The picture that you see of the three Purple Flyers holding County Championship trophies will remind County basketball fans of a great era in Montgomery County basketball. Of the three, the subject of our little article went on to a great career in basketball and education. His sister Nancy Rogers (Bob) and brother Jack Gardner still live here in Crawfordsville. Jack remembers going to Oakwood to play against his brother’s team when Bill Melvin was coaching the Purple Flyers in the early 50’s. Jack said that he and teammates Norm Surface and Mac Cash were on the team that year. It was a close game with New Market leading by a point at the end. Oakwood took a last second shot and missed. It came down between the three of them and was taken away by an Oakwood player who put it back in for the Oakwood win. That player was Barry McKay who turned out to be an outstanding tennis player for the University of Michigan and played on five Davis Cup teams. He is now highly-respected tennis announcer. 
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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 7
    Monday, October 29, 2018 4:00 AM
    The war had already begun and both young men left college to serve their country after a year and a half at Wabash. Jr. went into the Navy and while serving on a mine-sweeper continued to play a lot of basketball in China. His duties with the Shore Patrol still left him time to play ball. After his enlistment was up, the Navy sent him home to enroll at DePauw University and join the V12 program to become a naval officer. While at DePauw, Jr. Gardner played on the great DePauw teams of 1946-47, and 1947-48 when the Tigers were 16-3 and 14-6 respectively. Members of those DePauw teams were Stan Landon, Bill Walton, Wally Etchison, and Deac Freeland. Led by his efforts, the Tigers qualified for the NAIB (National Association of Intercollegiate Basketball) tournament after the 1946-47 season. He was the leading scorer for all three of his years at DePauw scoring 683 points, a record that placed him in the top ten Tiger scorers well into the 70’s. They also beat the Little Giants six straight times during the Gardner era at DePauw. He was named All-State and Little All-American in his junior and senior years and was recommended by Chuck Taylor of Converse shoes to the NBA, then drafted by the Minneapolis Lakers. He played in 50 games in 1948-49 and scored 89 points. After the championship season of 1948-49, Red was traded to the St. Louis Hawks for Slater Martin. He reported to the Hawks, but began to experience some physical problems that would bother him for the rest of his life and decided to leave the NBA ranks and continue his passion for basketball as a coach.
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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 6
    Sunday, October 21, 2018 9:48 PM
    The story of Red Gardner is the story that every boy who ever played basketball in Indiana dreams of starring in. He played on the team that won the first County Championship for his school. He recalled in later years that, “The celebration bonfires in the middle of town after each of the three consecutive County champion-ships was a pleasant indoctrination into the values of winning athletics. I’m sure that the ’39, ’40, and ’41 championships contributed to a unity and feeling of pride in the whole town.” Red continued, “Harold “Jack” Hester was our coach and I’m sure we would have tried to move mountains if he had asked.” Red was named to the All-County and All-Sectional teams in both his junior and senior years and was the president and Valedictorian of his class when he graduated in 1941. 
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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 4
    Monday, October 1, 2018 4:00 AM
    The photograph album had several pictures of New Market basketball teams and individuals. One of the pictures showed three young men holding trophies. It turns out that the three young men were the only members of the Purple Flyers who played on the teams that won three straight Montgomery County Championships, an unprecedented feat which didn’t happen again until the Darlington Indians accomplished it in 1968, 1969 and 1970. The three young men who played on the County championship teams of 1939, 1940 and 1941 were Bill Etter, Bud Marts and Jr. Gardner. Being a student of Montgomery County Basketball history, I had heard of all three and their equally legendary coach, Jack Hester, who was my basketball coach at Ladoga High School in the early 50s. Jack has the distinction of being the coach with the most County Championships in his coaching career. He was the coach of five winners at New Market and one at Ladoga. He is the only County coach to win three straight County championships. When Darlington won three straight near the end of the days before consolidation, they had two different coaches, Galen Smith, who won it in 1968 and Dave Nicholson who was the Indian coach in 1969 and 1970.
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  • The History of New Market Basketball Part 3
    Monday, September 24, 2018 4:00 AM
    We started at the National City Bank building which also previously housed The Paper of Montgomery County. The bank building is built on the site of the old YMCA Armory, which I am convinced as are many others was the site of the first basketball game played outside the state of Massachusetts. We next visited the Basketball Heritage Project display at the old Steck’s store on Main Street. We looked through the window at the pictures, trophies, pennants, and other memorabilia placed there by Carolyn Teague and her committee. Next, we visited Bob and Marcheta Dixon’s antique store and Montgomery County Sports Museum on West Main. While Emerson was looking at old uniforms, letter sweaters, senior cords, cheerleader outfits and other items, Marcheta (a former cheerleader for the Alamo Warriors of the Charlie Bowerman era) mentioned to me that she had a photograph album that I might be interested in. That is how I ended up in the living room of a New Market Purple Flyer legend, Bill Etter on a sunny Wednesday afternoon.

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  • History of New Market Basketball Part 1
    Monday, September 10, 2018 4:00 AM
    How did an ex-Ladoga Canner end up sitting in the living room of a New Market Purple Flyer legend and his legendary coach? It all started with the purchase of the best book on Indiana basketball that I have ever read. The book is entitled Hoosiers All by Emerson Houck. I picked it up at Barnes and Noble and began to leaf through it. I stopped when I saw my name in the book. What was my name doing in a book? It turns out that the author had found an article about my old friend, Charlie Bowerman, on a Wabash college blog that I had been working with. I fired off an e-mail to Emerson Houck and told him that it was the best book I had ever read because it had my name in it. He fired back an e-mail and said that he wanted to come down and visit the “Cradle.” Of course, he meant Crawfordsville, the “Cradle of Indiana Basketball.” Well, to make to long story even longer, he came to Crawfordsville and we toured the historic places that relate to the beginning of basketball outside its birthplace in Springfield, Massachusetts. 
    New Market started playing basketball in 1904; the first players were Roy Demoret, Newton Busenbark, Clay Rice, Harry Galey, Fern Busenbark, L.D. McMullen, and Ed Groves
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  • History of Basketball at Crawfordsville HS to 1995 Part 13
    Monday, August 20, 2018 4:00 AM
    Mike Sorrell and Gary Lester followed Paul Curtis as CHS roundball mentors. Sorrell stayed three years and won one sectional (1985) and Lester stayed six years and won his only sectional in 1989. It was under Coach Gary Lester that the leading scorer in Athenian history came upon the scene. Matt Petty, a real "gym-rat" and son of Wabash College coach Mac Petty, was a four year starter for Coach Lester. Petty played in 87 games in his CHS career and ended up with a berth on the Indiana All-Star Team and the career scoring record of 1608 points. Matt Petty also set the single season standard by scoring 625 points in 23 games for a 27.1 average his senior year, both C'ville records. It was also Lester's star pupil who took a soft pass from Scott Motz in the final game of the 1989 sectional against McCutcheon and fired a three-pointer with no time on the clock to defeat the Mavericks and propel the Athenians into the Lebanon Regional. The sectional victory in 1989 marked the 40th time that CHS had won the sectional and advanced to the regional round. The Athenians have won 11 regionals, one semi-state and one state crown, advancing to the Final Four seven times and winning runner-up honors twice.
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  • History of Basketball at Crawfordsville HS to 1995 Part 12
    Monday, August 13, 2018 4:00 AM
    Paul Curtis signed on in 1970 and stayed long enough to become the winningest coach in history. Curtis-led teams would win 169 games and lose only 111 in his 12 year tenure for a winning percentage of .603. Under Curtis, CHS won six sectionals and a regional. The Athenians won 20 games in 1972-73 and reached the 1,000 win mark in the school history during that year. However, Paul Curtis's most successful team was the 1978-79 team which posted a record of 17-9 and won the sectional and regional before losing to Anderson in the championship of the Semi-State at Mackey Arena in West Lafayette. Anderson would continue on to the state and lose to Muncie Central in the final game. In his twelve year coaching career, Paul Curtis coached three of the most prolific scorers in Crawfordsville history. Gary Rice played on the varsity only two years, but scored 896 points to rank seventh among the all-time leading scorers. His 19.5 scoring average placed him first in that category. Bob Reese also scored 500 points his senior year to place him 6th on the all-time list. Clint Dennison was another Curtis protégé. Dennison crashed the boards for CHS from 1970 to 1973 and scored 969 points to place 4th on the career scoring list. Dennison also ranked in the top ten in single season scoring as he racked up 463 points in his senior year to place him 8th on the list.
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  • History of Basketball at Crawfordsville HS to 1995 Part 10
    Monday, July 30, 2018 4:00 AM
    Carl DeBard followed with two sub-par years, paving the way for the next giant of CHS basketball, H.T. "Mac" McCollough. "Mac" arrived on the scene in 1935 and led the Athenians to four sectional championships and 3 regional titles in six years. Along the way, he won 92 games, fourth among Athenian coaches. From 1915 (the first year of the sectional format), to 1948, the Athenians won twenty-two sectionals and six regionals. They appeared in the Final Four on four occasions. Wingate and Crawfordsville dominated state as well as county basketball in the early years as Crawfordsville won the state in 1911 and Wingate in 1913 and 1914. In the county, C'ville and Wingate dominated sectional play for 19 years with CHS winning 12 titles and Wingate winning 7.
    Charlie Cummings took over 12 games into 1941 when "Mac" joined WW II. Cummings led the Athenians to Sectional and Regional crowns that year and took them to the Final Four in 1943.
    "Red" Lafollette followed Cummings and won the sectional in 1943. He was followed by Harold Anson who had two undistinguished years before A.L. Buckner settled in for two years and won the sectional and regional in 1945-46 with a 19-10 record and another sectional in 1946-47. Bill Chase took over in 1947- 48 and won 18 games including the sectional and regional. The Athenians hit a dry spell after that and were shut out of the sectional victory column from 1949 to 1955. The jump shot came into play in the fifties and scoring records jumped along with it. Jerry DeWitt piloted the Athenians for three years winning the first sectional and regional since 1948 as he accomplished the feat in 1955. Under the tutelage of Coach DeWitt, Phil Warren became the first big scorer in modern day CHS history. Warren scored 848 points in his three year career with a 12.8 average. DeWitt bowed out after a disappointing 7-14 record in 1955-56 and a brilliant new star from Indiana University, a protégé of the "Old Sheriff", Branch McCracken, flashed into the CHS basketball world.
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  • History of Basketball at Crawfordsville HS to 1995 Part 9
    Monday, July 23, 2018 4:00 AM
    Nolan Craver led the Athenians into the thirties as he won 67 games and 3 sectionals. He was followed by Charles "Chuck" Henry who won two sectionals and 26 games in two years. One of the stars of the early 30s who played for both Craver and Henry was Paul "Pat" Malaska. Malaska was an outstanding performer in both football and basketball, winning All-State honors in both sports. After a brilliant career at CHS, he would further his education and play basketball in college at Purdue University for the legendary, Ward "Piggy" Lambert. After graduation, Malaska played professionally for the Indianapolis Kautskys and is now enshrined in the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame.
    Paul “Pat” Malaska
    Pat Malaska was one of the truly legendary figures in Athenian basketball. After starring in baseball, basketball, track and football at CHS, Malaska took his skills north to Purdue University to play basketball for the equally legendary Crawfordsville graduate, Ward “Piggy” Lambert. Malaska's experiences at Purdue are still talked about by the old-timers and visitors to the Purdue archives. He was an immediate star for the fast-breaking Boilermakers of Lambert. Called “Poosh 'Em Up Pat,” because of his ability to get the ball up the court so fast, Malaska made All-Conference as a sophomore in 1936 and again as a senior in 1938. In between, he almost died because of football and is still remembered for eating an Eskimo Pie during a basketball game. He pestered Lambert to let him play football until Lambert said, “Go ahead and kill yourself.” 
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  • History of Basketball at CHS to 1995 Part 7
    Monday, July 9, 2018 4:00 AM
    The next two seasons were sub-par for CHS. They were 7-18 under Coach Freeman in 1916-17 and 9-12 under Coach Parmer Sims in 1917-18. They rebounded in 1918-19 under coach J.D. (John) Blacker who had played with the State Champion Wingate teams of 1913 and 1914. Blacker led the Athenians to the Final Four in 1918-19 with a record of 30-4. The Athenians were poised to claim yet another state crown when disaster struck. An intra-county squabble between Crawfordsville and Wingate reached the ears of the IHSAA. The previous summer, the Athenians had played the Newtown baseball team which had a young man from Mellott named Fletcher Kerr played for them. Kerr ended up on the Wingate basketball team when the season started and the Athenians cried "Foul". However, Coach Blacker had angered the Wingate folks by recruiting one of their players, Marion "Jack" Blacker, (no relation) to play basketball for CHS. Wingate and Crawfordsville both took their cases the IHSAA, who promptly suspended both schools for the whole year. The irony of the situation is that both Crawfordsville and Wingate pursued an ambitious, independent schedule which led to the Athenians playing the best independent competition possible and ending up with a 28-2 record. Their only losses that year were Em-Roe, the Indianapolis Independent Champs and county neighbor, Wingate in the Mid-West tourney at Chicago. CHS had defeated Wingate previously to win the Tri-State at Cincinnati. An interesting note about the Mid-West Tourney was reported by neighbors of Fletcher Kerr (The Wingate player imported from Mellott). Kerr told his neighbors that a young man at the University of Chicago took a liking to the Wingate team and scouted for them and helped them prepare for the hated Crawfordsville Athenians. Wingate defeated Crawfordsville in the Chicago Tourney 22-16 and was proclaimed National Champs for the year 1920. That young man's name, by the way, was Paul D. "Tony" Hinkle, later a legendary coach of Butler University’s Bulldogs.
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
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P.O. Box 272
Crawfordsville, Indiana 47933


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