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Tuesday, October 16, 2018
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  • then & now with bill boone
  • 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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  • History of Basketball at CHS to 1995 Part 6
    Monday, July 2, 2018 4:00 AM
    L.J.C. "Brandy" Freeman who had taken over the coaching duties in 1913-14 and in 1914-15, the first year of the IHSAA Sectional format, led the Athenians to a 17-5 record and a Sectional Championship, preparing CHS for the next great run at the State Championship. The 1915-16 team finished with a record of 26-4 and was conceded by most knowledgeable basketball men of the state to be the best team in Indiana. After winning 19 while losing only 3 in the regular season, the Athenians breezed through the sectional which was still being played in the Armory Gymnasium. CHS defeated New Market 39-16, Pine Village 62-27, New Richmond 61-18 and defending State Champion Wingate 53-9. The Athenians continued to coast through the tourney defeating Clinton 40-17, Kokomo 36-19, and Vincennes 33-17. They then entered the final game against Lafayette as heavy favorites. The Athens City Five however was defeated in overtime 27-26. The upset was so unexpected and the Athenians so clearly the best team in the state that Coach Steihm of Indiana University expressed the sentiment of all present when he said, "I present this trophy to Lafayette not because they are the best team in the state but because they scored the most points in the game just played." The 1915-16 Athenians suffered defeat, but according to the editor of the annual "came up smiling, even when they lost the cup, they grinned' and bore it like men." Thereafter, they were referred to as "The State Champions without a cup." The team captain, Paul Manson, was chosen for the All-State Team at center. Monte Grimes won the forward honor, and the title of "the most versatile player in Indiana." Lester Hunt was called "the best floor guard in the State." 
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  • History of Crawfordsville Basketball to 1995 Part 5
    Monday, June 25, 2018 4:00 AM
    In 1909-10, CHS again defeated every team and won the state championship as they defeated Lafayette 30-15. They were undefeated in the state and lost only to New Ulm, Wisconsin playing only a few hours after a long and tiring train trip. As representatives of the state of Indiana to the All-Western Basketball Tournament in Madison, Wisconsin, CHS bounced back from the early defeat to finish in second place in the tourney. The 1910 Athenian reported that, "Their floor work and scaling the wall was little short of spectacular." The Athenians finished 4 -1 in the tourney and 17 - 2 overall.
    That set the stage for the first IHSAA sponsored basketball tournament of 1911.
    After being proclaimed Indiana State Champions for several years, the Athenians, under legendary coach, David Glascock, got a chance to take on all comers, winning 12 games and losing only to Marion 34-32 and Lebanon 20-16. They then journeyed to Bloomington to compete for the state crown. They won the championship despite having to play five games in one week including four in twenty-six hours and three games in nine hours. The five iron men who played most of the time for Coach "Davey" were "Newt" Hill, "Chine" Taylor, "Stevie" Stevenson, "Buddie" Miller, and "Cassie" Chadwick. This was Crawfordsville's early version of the "Fab Five". The two subs were "Ick" Shaw and "Chicken" Myers.
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  • History of Crawfordsville Basketball to 1995 Part 4
    Monday, June 18, 2018 4:00 AM
    For the next two years, 1904-05 and 1905-06, CHS was reloading. Coach Ralph Jones was developing new talent and older players like "Pete" Vaughan, Ward "Piggy" Lambert, Justin Molony, Paul Stump, and Sherman Yount were polishing their skills. They laid claim to the State Championship again in 1904-05. In 1906-07, the Athenians were ready and loaded. Led by Molony, Poston, Stump, and Vaughan, CHS won every game and finished 12 - 0. They won the City league and with it the Wicks Cup, defeating the "Little Giants", All-Western champions of the year before in both games 23 - 21 and 24 - 21. They also defeated the YMCA twice and the Co. "B" team twice. CHS won the State Championship by defeating the two Indianapolis rivals, Manual and Shortridge. "Throughout the whole year, the team did not lose a single game: to college, YMCA or High School teams and as winners of the Wicks Cup and the State Championship, we should be proud of the team and grateful to Mr. Jones, whose hard work and faithfulness, much of our success was due." So wrote the editor of the 1907 Athenian. Three Athenians, Sherman Poston, Justin Molony, and Paul Stump made the All-State team.
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  • Monday, May 7, 2018 4:00 AM
    So we have to finish the history of New Richmond basketball by forever linking it to the movie Hoosiers. The makers of the movie did a masterful job of incorporating, not only New Richmond, but also seven other Hoosier towns to the movie that was nominated for two Academy Awards and has become a true sports classic rivaling Rudy, Field of Dreams, The Natural, and Sandlot. These movies will age, but they will never grow old. Gene Hackman and Dennis Hopper were both nominated for Academy Awards; Hopper was nominated for the best supporting actor and Hackman for the main character.

    As I have mentioned, the movie makers used seven different towns to film the movie because they could not find a single town with the main street businesses, the school and the gym that they wanted. How typical of a story about Indiana basketball that the director had to go to several different towns to get just the effect that he wanted.
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
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