The Journal Gazette
Friday, March 27, 2020 1:00 am

Northwestern teammates lead girls AP all-state team

Homestead's Graber voted to 2nd team

Staff, news services

INDIANAPOLIS – Northwestern teammates Madison Layden and Kendall Bostic made a smooth transition to Class 4A basketball this season.

They kept scoring points, winning games and racking up honors. On Thursday, the dynamic duo received another reward when both were named to the The Associated Press' girls all-state first team for the second straight season.

Layden also received the most votes for the second consecutive time, barely beating out Sydney Parrish of Hamilton Southeastern. Bostic received the third-highest vote total from a panel of sportswriters, broadcasters and coaches around the state. Players are selected regardless of which class in which their schools compete.

Marion center RaShaya Kyle and Franklin Central forward Rachel Loobie rounded out the first team.

Homestead senior Sydney Graber, whose Spartans ran into Northwestern in the Marion Regional final, was named second-team all-state after averaging 15.1 points. She was the only player from northeast Indiana to be named to first, second or third team. Graber's sophomore teammate Ayanna Patterson was named high honorable mention. Brielle Harrison of Warsaw and Hanna Knoll of Angola were honorable mentions. 

“It's really exciting, because looking at the all state teams, it's all Indy girls,” said Graber, who has committed to Central Michigan. “So being able to be there on that list and represent Northern Indiana and my city, too, is an honor.”

In addition to Graber, the second team is composed of Nan Garcia of Jeffersonville, Ella Collier of Danville and Lawrence North's backcourt tandem of Jayla Smith and Katie Davidson. Smith, a junior, was the only underclassmen to make the first two teams.

Graber and the other players selected to the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association All-Star team, which will play the Junior All-Stars and the Kentucky All-Stars in June, are now trying to stay in shape without their teammates, trainers or access to the gym.

“I've been working out with Vernard Hollins, but with everything going on, that ended yesterday,” Graber said, referring to the Always 100 founder, who she can no longer meet with because of the stay-at-home order issued by the governor. “Along with that, I've been doing a lot of running, just to keep in shape. The thing with the All-Star coach, he called me and let all the girls know that this is one of our faster all star teams, so he wants us to stay in shape and be healthy on our, I guess, break. So that's motivating me to keep training hard.”

Note: Caleb Furst of Blackhawk Christian and Luke Goode of Homestead were named to the IBCA Supreme 15 Underclass boys team on Thursday. Snider's Dillon Duff and Norwell's Will Geiger were named to the Senior Large School All-State team. Tanner Cooley of Bluffton, Kade Fuelling of Bellmont, DeMarcus Hudson of Bishop Luers, Hayden Jones of East Noble, Treveon Jones of South Side, Donovynn Lewis of New Haven, Mitch Mendenhall of Woodlan, Hunter Perlich of Churubusco and Mitchell Wilson of Churubusco were senior honorable mentions. 

Snider's Michael Eley was named to the Junior Large School All-State team. Connor Essegian of Central Noble and Landen Jordan of Churubusco were named to the Small School All-State team. Zane Burke and Marcus Davidson of Blackhawk Christian, Caedmon Bontrager of Lakewood Park Christian, Blake Davison of Leo, Jalen Jackson of Carroll, Thomas Latham and Jakar Williams of New Haven, Brenden Lytle of Bishop Dwenger, Hayden Nern of Bluffton, Jackson Paul of Churubusco, Joe Reidy of Woodlan, Brett Sickafoose of Whitko, Naylon Thompson of Bishop Luers, Gabe Trevino of Eastside and Sawyer Yoder of Central Noble were all honorable mentions. 

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