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Purse increase announced at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino

Indiana Grand Racing & Casino has announced purse increases for both Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing, effective Tuesday, July 6. The increase will add 10 percent onto all Thoroughbred overnights and roughly $1,000 to each Quarter Horse overnight and trials, which reflects approximately a six percent increase for the sprinters.

 

“We have had a great season so far in 2021 and we are pleased to announce this purse increase across the board for our horsemen,” said Eric Halstrom, vice president and general manager of racing. “This boost is a direct result of elevated business levels that continue to be strong this year. We appreciate the support from our racing fans, and we are working hard to continue offering a solid, competitive program for both Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing.

 

The purse increase will go into effect two days before Indiana Grand’s biggest race of the season, the 27th running of the Grade III Indiana Derby set for Wednesday, July 7. A total of six stakes offering purses in excess of $840,000 will be provided during the late afternoon program beginning at 2:25PM. The Indiana Derby is joined by the Grade III Indiana Oaks on the card that has set new track all-source handle records the past three seasons. Stakes purses will remain at their current levels and will not be affected by the purse increase.

 

The 19th season of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing is now in progress and continues through Monday, Nov. 8. Live racing is conducted at 2:25 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, with first post on Thursday set at 3:25 p.m. A special Indiana Champions Day highlighting the state’s top Thoroughbred and Quarter Horses will be held Saturday, Oct. 30, beginning at noon. More information about the 2021 racing season is available at www.caesars.com/indiana-grand

Scott McClelland says Noblesville right fit, right time

Scott McClelland spent seven seasons at Morristown before departing for Indianapolis Brebeuf followed by a stop at Western Boone. 

 

The return to Morristown was highlighted by a 2018 1A state title.  But now a new destination, new challenge has prompted Coach Mac to accept the head coaching position at Noblesville.

 

McClelland was approved by the Noblesville School Board at its Tuesday meeting.  He says it’s the right fit at the right time.

 

 

McClelland is 246-169 in 18 seasons as a head coach with the 2018 state championship and two other sectional championships at Morristown in 2007 and 2019.  This latest six year stint at Morristown ends with a 117- 40 mark and three seasons of 20 or more wins.

 

He says he knew there was a good future when he returned in 2015.  He couldn’t have imagined winning it all.

 

 

Now a 4A challenge awaits at Hoosier Crossroads Conference member Noblesville.  The Millers play in a sectional that features Carmel and Hamilton Southeastern along with Fishers, Westfield and Zionsville.  The Millers have been competitive but still suffered first round eliminations for three consecutive seasons to Westfield (7 pts), Carmel (2 pts) and Hamilton SE (6 pts).  Before that, it was a five-point loss to Anderson in double-overtime four years ago.

 

 

As for the coach himself, McClelland says he’s learned a lot since he left Morristown the first time after the 2009-2010 season.

 

 

Morristown now must fill its head coaching position as well as its athletic director post.  Brian Graham accepted the athletic director / assistant principal post at Switzerland County.

Correas Stable named Indiana Grand Barn Crew of the Month

Trainer Ignacio Correas IV has raced at Indiana Grand frequently in the past on a ship-in basis, but 2021 marks the first year he has stabled on the grounds. His crew was recognized for their hard work in the shed row as June’s Barn Crew of the Month, presented by the Indiana Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA) and Texas Corral.

 

Under the direction of assistant trainer Hiram Rosario, the Correas Stable members oversee 25 horses in Barn 16 at Indiana Grand. Each horse receives top care and the workspace is kept in great order, two aspects noticed by the selection committee and important for consideration for the award.

 

“Everybody works hard, and this is a good group,” said Rosario, who has worked for Correas for the past five years. “They are good people and do a great job.”

 

Correas, who also has 20 horses at Keeneland, is a native of Argentina. He began training in 2003, but his stable really took off in 2011. He has 12 members on his crew at Indiana Grand. Those who are part of the team include Salomon Cuida, Herlindo Fabian, Elizabeth Cuida, Jose Santizo, Emmanuel Santizo, Zoritza Patino, Marifer Garcia, Jomar Benitez and Jesus Torres.

 

The team at the Correas Stable received a $200 gift certificate to Texas Corral, located on the north side of Shelbyville. The entire team will enjoy a night out for steaks, seafood, and drinks as the recipient of the Barn Crew of the Month.

 

In addition to the gift certificate, a banner will be hung on the outside of the Correas barn to signify the award winners for the month of June.

 

A total of six Barn Crew of the Month awards will be presented during the 2021 racing season, which extends into November.

Track Superintendent's Field Day set for Indiana Grand Racing & Casino

After missing last season due to COVID-19, the 19th annual Track Superintendent Field Day is set to begin Sunday, June 13 at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino. The event kicks off with a reception at the Holiday Inn Express in Shelbyville followed by two full days of conference activity at Indiana Grand Monday, June 14 and Tuesday, June 15.

 

Moderated by Nancy Holthus, on-air paddock analyst at Indiana Grand, numerous industry experts will be scattered throughout the two-day event regarding surface and soil sciences, the latest in equipment used to maintain track surfaces, agronomic practices, and other tactical safety measures to assist track superintendents with their day to day routines.

 

“This year, we have over 70 tracks represented at the event,” said Roy Smith. “Due to continued travel restrictions, we won’t have anyone internationally like we generally do, but we will still have a good representation from tracks across North America. It’s a great time for us all to get together and share ideas and learn about the latest technology and equipment out there.”

 

Smith, who has been Indiana Grand’s track superintendent since 2015 and now resides in Morristown, Ind., is the founder of the Track Superintendent’s Field Day conference. This is the second time the event, which travels to different racetracks each season, has been hosted by Indiana Grand. The event made a stop in Indiana in 2016.

 

Several equipment displays will be trackside during live racing Monday, June 14 and Tuesday, June 15. The displays are open to the public.

 

The 19th season of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing is now in progress and continues through Monday, Nov. 8. Live racing is conducted at 2:25 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, with first post on Thursday set at 3:25 p.m. A special Indiana Champions Day highlighting the state’s top Thoroughbred and Quarter Horses will be held Saturday, Oct. 30, beginning at noon. More information about the 2021 racing season is available at www.caesars.com/indiana-grand

Two Shelby County golfers miss state finals cut at The Players Club

The high school golf season ended Thursday for Triton Central’s Oliver Gearlds and Morristown’s Asher Caldwell.

 

Both golfers failed to advance out of the Muncie Central Regional.

 

Gearlds and Caldwell each shot 12-over-par 48 on the front nine at The Players Club in Muncie. Caldwell finished one shot better than Gearlds on the back nine to post 91. Gearlds shot 92.

 

The top three finishing teams and the top five low individuals not on an advancing team qualified for the State Finals next week at Prairie View Golf Club in Carmel.

 

Hamilton Southeastern was crowned regional champion after posting a team score of 296. Cathedral (301) and Fishers (313) also advanced.

 

Cathedral’s Ryan Ford was the regional champion with a round of 4-under par 68.

 

The individuals that qualified for the two-day state finals tournament that starts Tuesday were Bellmont’s Winston Brown (68), Mount Vernon’s Sam McWilliams (69), New Castle’s Dillon Bergum (70) and Derek Tabor (72), and Tipton’s Maverick Conaway (75).

Maters N Taters wins William Henry Harrison Stakes at Indiana Grand

Maters N Taters has long been a fan favorite because of his name. He got a little more popular with an upset victory in the 18th running of the $75,000 William Henry Harrison Stakes at Indiana Grand.

 

Maters N Taters has tactical speed. The question was whether he could clear the front out of the gate from an outside post in the six-furlong event. The four-year-old Indiana sired son of Santiva quickly put those questions to rest as jockey Eddie Perez had him on the lead just a few steps out of the gate.

 

Oscar PQ and Alex Achard went with the leader early from the inside, but by the turn, he backed off as Maters N Taters crossed over to the rail to lead the way.

 

Around the turn, the field began to bunch up as they prepared to show their best stride in the stretch. Race favorite Double Tuff and Jesus Castanon led the pack behind Maters N Taters, but could not gain any ground on the leader.

 

Late in the race, it was clear Maters N Taters would be victorious over the sloppy surface, scoring the win by two lengths in a time of 1:09.78. Double Tuff finished second over Stop Hammertime and Joe Ramos for third.

 

Maters N Taters paid $44.20 and gave trainer Anthony Cunningham and owner Salvador Villalobos their first career Thoroughbred stakes win. The pair are prevalent in Quarter Horse racing in Indiana with Villalobos serving as Cunningham’s assistant trainer in the powerhouse barn of Indiana Quarter Horses.

 

“We bought this horse and one other Thoroughbred and a Quarter Horse off of Ron Brown last year when he said he was retiring,” explained Cunningham. “Sal (Villalobos) deserves all the credit with this horse. He has done all the work with him.”

 

Villalobos has worked for Cunningham for the past 10 years. Each winter, he returns to Mexico to spend time with family before rejoining Cunningham at Indiana Grand for the racing season.

 

Cunningham, who hails from Michigan and has a farm there, travels back and forth between two destinations and relies heavily on Villalobos for his expertise in the shed row at Indiana Grand.

 

“This particular horse stays here,” added Cunningham. “He has a little attitude and can be tough to be around at times. Sal has done a great job with him.”

 

The game plan as a long shot in the race worked out as planned. With early speed, Perez and Cunningham decided early on that would be their strategy.

 

“The plan was to make the lead and they let me take the lead easy today,” said Perez. “He’s got tactical speed and we wanted to use that to his advantage.”

 

It also was tactical to utilize Perez aboard Maters N Taters. Perez, a multiple Graded Stakes winning jockey with more than 2,500 career wins, knows the horse well and knows how to ride him.

 

“Eddie (Perez) had ridden this horse for a long time for Ron (Brown),” explained Cunningham. “That’s why we put him up.”

 

Maters N Taters is nearing $200,000 in career earnings. It was his fourth career win and his second stakes victory, scoring a win in the $100,000 Crown Ambassador Stakes as a two-year-old for Brown. Perez has been aboard for all four of his career wins in 18 outings.

 

Cunningham is currently ranked second in the leading Quarter Horse trainer standings yet again in 2021. Although he does have a few Thoroughbreds in his barn and had dabbled in Thoroughbreds in recent years, his main focus is on Quarter Horses.

 

“It’s a big deal to me to win a Thoroughbred stakes races because it is hard to do,” said Cunningham. “Thoroughbreds are a whole different ball game. I’m just fortunate I have a good horse and a great team behind me. Everyone worked hard to get this horse here today.”

 

Shy Money scores in Shelby County Stakes at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino

Shy Money got nearly all the cash in the 19th running of the $75,000 Shelby County Stakes. The win marked the first stakes victory for owner Paul King, who is also the breeder on the grey Unbridled Express four-year-old filly.

 

With earlier rain saturating the track and more rain lurking in the vicinity, Shy Money joined eight other females on the track for the Shelby County Stakes, which began the inaugural season of Thoroughbred racing at Indiana Grand. Ridden by Emmanuel Esquivel, Shy Money began her journey from post four and was in the lead down the backstretch, followed closely by race favorite Hungarian Princess and Sammy Bermudez.

 

In the stretch, Hungarian Princess began to make a move for the front spot and a battle ensued. Shy Money stood her ground and was able to fend off Hungarian Princess, just a three-year-old, at the finish line for the win by a nose in 1:10.35 over the sloppy surface. Sentimentaljourney and Jermaine Bridgmohan finished third.

 

The second choice in the race, Shy Money paid $7.40 for the win. It was her third straight win and her fourth in five career starts. Aaron West trains the Indiana sired filly for King, who was trackside to accept his first stakes trophy. King is relatively new to the business, purchasing his first horse in 2017. King and West began with Shy Money late last fall as a three-year-old with two starts in Indiana. They gave her the winter off and brought her back to the racetrack in mid-April.

 

“She (Shy Money) has a big heart,” said West, who has trained several Indiana champions in recent years, including Marina’s Legacy. “We are going to give her a break, now. She is undefeated sprinting, so we will keep her at that distance.”

 

Shy Money increased her career bankroll to more than $110,000 with the win. It was her first attempt in stakes action, and she is now three for three at the five-furlong distance.

 

The 19th season of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing is now in progress and continues through Monday, Nov. 8. Live racing is conducted at 2:25 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, with first post on Thursday set at 3:25 p.m. A special Indiana Champions Day highlighting the state’s top Thoroughbred and Quarter Horses will be held Saturday, Oct. 30, beginning at noon. More information about the 2021 racing season is available at www.caesars.com/indiana-grand

Bjorkgren out as Pacers begin search for new head coach

The Indiana Pacers announced Wednesday that Nate Bjorkgren will not be retained as the team’s head coach.

“The 2020-21 season was not what any of us hoped or anticipated it would be, and our results on the court certainly did not meet the standards for what our organization and our fans have come to expect,” said Pacers President of Basketball Operations Kevin Pritchard. “We have determined this is the right time to move in a different direction, and on behalf of the Simon Family and the entire Pacers organization, I want to express my gratitude to Nate for his efforts leading our team. While we do not have a definite timetable for our search, we will move quickly to identify candidates who will make our team and our organization stronger.”
            
Bjorkgren was hired prior to the 2020-21 season and led the Pacers to a 34-38 record. He previously served as an assistant coach in Toronto and Phoenix.

Shelbyville pitcher, catcher honored with All-HHC award

Shelbyville senior pitcher Benny Thompson and junior catcher Charlie Rife were named to the All-Hoosier Heritage Conference Baseball Team.

 

Thompson (photo, left), signed to play baseball at Anderson University, led the Golden Bears with a 6-4 record and 2.46 earned run average. He had 79 strikeouts in 59.2 innings of work and threw two no-hitters this season.

 

Rife (photo, right) hit a team-leading .443 with eight doubles, three home runs and 28 runs batted in.

 

The 21-member All-HHC squad features nine seniors.

 

Also named All-Conference were Delta’s Mario Lopez (.422, 11 doubles, 21 RBIs); Greenfield-Central’s Grant Shepherd (.370, 5 doubles, 22 RBIs), Conner Sims (4-1, 2.67) and Gavin Atwood (.338, 5 HRs, 25 RBIs); Mt. Vernon’s Hunter Dobbins (.560, 10 HRs, 39 RBIs), AJ Swingle (9-0, 1.60), Joel Walton (.485, 13 doubles, 38 RBIs); Eli Clotfelter (8-1, 3.29) and Eli Bridenthal (.366, 21 runs); New Castle’s Aydan Decker-Petty (4-2, 1.42), Corbin Malott (.376, 32 runs) and Garrett Rusch (.299, 8 doubles, 23 RBIs); New Palestine’s Brendan Tabor (.365, 4 HRs, 24 RBIs) and Maddox Manes (.333, 5 doubles, 15 RBIs); Pendleton Heights’ Ricky Howell (4-3, 2.22) and Ryan Graham (.309, 21 runs); and Yorktown’s Jacob Pruitt (.506, 26 runs), Robby Hook (.314, 4 HRs, 23 RBIs) and Cole Temple (.397, 7 doubles, 21 RBIs).

 

Mt. Vernon head coach Brad King was named Coach of the Year.

 

Mt. Vernon won the conference title with a 12-2 record. The Marauders (26-6) won sectional and regional titles and will face Jasper (29-2) at 4 p.m. Saturday in the Jasper-hosted semistate.

 

Greenfield-Central (16-8, 11-3 HHC) was HHC runner-up ahead of Pendleton Heights (16-16, 8-6), New Palestine (15-16, 7-7), Yorktown (16-11, 7-7), Shelbyville (16-12, 6-8), New Castle (12-16, 5-9) and Delta (6-18, 0-14).

HHC honors three Golden Bears, head coach with postseason awards

A trio of Shelbyville softball players were recently honored by the Hoosier Heritage Conference with All-HHC distinction.

 

Seniors Katie Mathies and Addisenn Weaver and junior Karissa Hamilton were selected to the 20-player All-Conference squad from a Golden Bears team that finished HHC runner-up and a single-season record of 24 wins.

 

Mathies, who will play softball at DePauw University in 2022, hit .505 with 15 doubles, three triples, 10 home runs and 42 runs batted in as a corner infielder.

 

Weaver, a Valparaiso recruit, hit .462 with 11 doubles, 10 home runs and 36 RBIs as a catcher and third baseman.

 

Hamilton, signed to play at Kentucky, led the team with a .604 batting average, 11 doubles, 22 home runs and 55 RBIs as a catcher and outfielder.

 

In addition, Shelbyville head coach Mark Hensley (photo), who earned career win No. 100 late in the season, was named HHC Coach of the Year.

 

Also named All-HHC were New Palestine’s Sam Booe (16-1, 1.16 earned run average), Lexi Campbell (.379, 11 HRs, 42 RBIs), Kinsey Mitchell (.451, 33 runs) and Alanina Miller (.453, 32 runs); Yorktown’s Ainsley Phillips (.458, 13 HRs, 40 RBIs), Kaylyn Coahran (9-1, 2.76) and Alanah Jones (.347, 8 HRs, 30 RBIs); Mt. Vernon’s Madison Taylor (12-3, 0.65), Macey Cox (.436, 6 HRs, 33 RBIs) and Riley Hasseld (.438, 40 runs); Pendleton Heights’ Kylie Davis (.485, 16 doubles, 48 runs), Grace Scott (.398, 11 HRs, 37 RBIs) and Kieli Ryan (.465, 9 HRs, 34 RBIs); Greenfield-Central’s Caroline Gibson (.387, 9 HRs, 28 RBIs) and Meganne Wineinger (.521, 34 runs); Delta’s Sydney Stroble (.568, 6 HRs, 33 RBIs); and New Castle’s Madi Moffitt (.442, 10 HRs, 39 RBIs).

 

New Palestine won the HHC title with a perfect 7-0 record. The Dragons finished the season at 28-1.

 

Shelbyville followed at 24-5 (6-1 HHC) ahead of Yorktown (24-6, 4-3), Mt. Vernon (21-5, 4-3), Pendleton Heights (19-11, 4-3), Greenfield-Central (16-11, 2-5), Delta (10-17, 1-6) and New Castle (12-17, 0-7).

Piedi Bianchi named 2020 Horse of the Year

The Indiana Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (ITOBA) typically honor the state’s top performers with a spring banquet. Due to restrictions associated with COVID-19, the banquet was canceled the past two seasons, but the state is still honoring the top performers of 2020 during the 2021 season at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino.

 

Top performers in each division are highlighted daily on the simulcast production, and to honor two of the state’s top awards, a special presentation was made Tuesday for the ITOBA/Indiana Breed Development Breeder of the Year and the 2020 Champion Indiana Horse of the Year.

 

Top breeding honors were awarded to Deann Baer and Greg Baer, DVM, breeders of the Champion Horse of 2020, Piedi Bianchi (photo).

 

The Baers have bred many winners in recent years. Hailing from Columbus, Indiana, the small breeding operation sends many yearlings to the sales in Kentucky where Piedi Bianchi was originally transported as a weanling.

 

Her current connections to Jay Oringer, Jack Bick, Al Bianchi Racing LLC, Adam Bayroff and Mike Maturo purchased the filly at the Ocala Breeders Sale during her two-year-old season and have reaped rewards since that time.

 

Piedi Bianchi won two of three starts at Indiana Grand in 2020. Overall, she has won six races in 24 starts with earnings of more than $650,000. The Multiple Grades Stakes placed daughter of Overanalyze has had success outside of the borders of Indiana, winning at Aqueduct and Del Mar with a fifth-place finish in the Breeders Cup Juvenile at two at Del Mar.

 

She most recently finished second in the Grade 3 Intercontinental Stakes at Belmont Park.

 

“We hope to get her back to where we started in November at Del Mar (Breeders Cup),” said Oringer, who was present for the awards ceremony. “Her career is winding down, but we hope she has a few more good races in her. Once she is done racing, she will be a brood mare and we are thinking Tapit. The baby should come out nice and grey.”

 

Oringer and his partners work hard to ensure every horse they have ever owned gets a good home after racing. A portion of the earnings from Piedi Bianchi goes to racehorse aftercare.

 

“It’s important to us to give to aftercare,” said Oringer. “We make sure all of our horses are taken care of after they are done, even if we have to claim them back.”

TC's Gearlds, Morristown's Caldwell qualify for Muncie Central Golf Regional

Morristown’s Asher Caldwell won a playoff to join Triton Central’s Oliver Gearlds in Thursday’s Muncie Central Golf Regional.

 

A trio of Hoosier Heritage Conference schools advanced out of Monday’s Greenfield-Central Golf Sectional played at Hawk’s Tail Golf Course in Greenfield.

 

Mt. Vernon won the sectional title with a team score of 316. New Castle was runner-up at 319 and New Palestine advanced with 330.

 

Shenandoah (350) and Greenfield-Central (352) rounded out the top five with all four Shelby County boys golf programs following.

 

Shelbyville finished sixth (361) ahead of Triton Central (366), Morristown (388) and Southwestern (408). Eastern Hancock (415), Blue River Valley (461) and Knightstown (incomplete) rounded out the sectional field.

 

New Castle’s Derek Tabor was the individual sectional champion with a 3-under-par 69. He finished one shot ahead of Mt. Vernon’s Sam McWilliams (70).

 

The top three individual finishers not affiliated with an advancing team also qualified for regional competition.

 

Shenandoah’s Jordan Zody and Gearlds each shot 78.

 

Caldwell and Triton Central’s Evan Uhls both finished at 81 – and only one could advance. Caldwell won the playoff to earn the third advancing position.

 

Ethan Apsley led Shelbyville with an 85. Matthew Bunton (87), Nolen Chaney (92), Elijah Baker (97) and Samuel Bunton (101) completed the Golden Bears’ scorecard.

 

For Triton Central, Griffin Sego finished at 97, Caleb Anderson shot 110 and Maxwell Ray posted 126.

 

Following Caldwell on Morristown’s scorecard were Sawyer Jones (97), Jordan Battles (104), Nick Stidham (106) and Collin Essex (112).

 

Tristan Pappano was the only Southwestern golfer to break triple digits. He finished at 99 with Ty Burchum (101), Justin Swift (101) and Caleb Pappano (107) closely behind.

 

Gearlds and Caldwell will join the regional field for an 8 a.m. start time Thursday at The Players Club in Muncie.

Indiana Grand sets record handle for Quarter Horse racing

Indiana Grand Racing & Casino recorded its highest all-sources handle during the first six All-Quarter Horse racing programs Saturday.

 

A total of $1,000,393 was wagered to establish a new track record.

 

The day featured 13 races, including two stakes races and trials for the Indiana Grand QHRAI Derby, with the top 10 heading to the $75,000 final set for June 28.

 

The seventh running of the $95,900 Harley Greene Derby was a good preview of 3-year-olds in the state with Beach Blast turning in a very impressive performance in the 350-yard dash.

 

Jockey Sammy Mendez rode Beach Blast to the finish line in 17.65 seconds. Owned by Keith Bode and Brock Hutchinson, Beach Blast now has four wins in eight career races and increased his career bankroll over the $200,000 mark.

 

The second Quarter Horse stakes of the day was a first for both horse and jockey. Eric Esqueda guided Jess a Flyin Beach to his first stakes win in the $83,200 Born Runner Classic.

 

Starting from post two, the duo had good positioning early and was able to take over midway through the 400-yard dash to get a nose under the wire first for the win.

 

Owned and trained by Tony Cunningham, Jess a Flyin Beach earned his fourth career win and increased his career bankroll to more than $119,000.

 

“He’s been second or third in stakes action but never quite got his head in front at the wire,” said Cunningham. “He has a lot of class. He’s had some issues over the past couple of years but was able to put it all together today. I’m happy for Erik (Esqueda) to get his first stakes win. We have a great team and can’t do it without all of them.”

 

Earlier on the card three trials were held to determine the final field for the Indiana Grand QHRAI Derby.

 

The top 10 qualifiers are Cartel Creek (jockey Jose Beltran, 20.215 seconds); WRs Moonin the Wagon (Sammy Mendez, 20.261); Jess Over Yonder (Natasha Fritz, 20.358); Jess Good Reason SA (Uriel Cervantes, 20.45); Paint Me Brown (Uriel Cervantes, 20.473); CC Moonflash (L.D. Martinez, 20.532); Lone Cartel (L.D. Martinez, 20.603); Apollitical Tools (Giovani Vazquez Gomez, 20.623); Shez Bodacious (Cristian Reyes, 20.638); and AA Storm the Mozoomo (Eric Esqueda, 20.655).

Another first was recorded Saturday when trainer Shawna Martin scored her first career training victory with a win from Delightful Dahlonega, ridden by Cristian Esqueda).

 

The next all Quarter Horse Day at Indiana Grand is July 3.

Shakamak ends Southwestern's record-setting baseball season

Southwestern’s record-setting baseball season came to an end Saturday with a 10-1 loss to Shakamak in the semifinal opener at the Class A Morristown Regional.

 

The Lakers puts runs on the scoreboard in each of the first five innings Saturday morning and cruised into the championship game where it shut down Oldenburg Academy, 13-0.

 

Class A, No. 10 Shakamak (16-7) will face No. 5 Borden (22-6-1) at 1 p.m. this Saturday at the Mooresville Semistate.

 

And at the Laporte Semistate, No. 2 Washington Township (25-7) takes on unranked Cowan (15-13) at 11 a.m. Saturday.

 

The winners advance to the Class A State Championship Game at Victory Field in Indianapolis.

 

Anick Hartsell took his first and only loss of the season for Southwestern. The senior (8-1) was lifted after two innings and the Spartans trailing 3-0.

 

Matthew Clements took over but the Lakers kept the pressure on scoring one run in the third, two more in the fourth and four in the fifth to blow the game wide open.

 

Southwestern’s only run came on a Christian DeArmitt single in the fourth that scored Jordan Jones.

 

The Spartans finished 22-5, a school record for wins, and captured the Shelby County Tournament title, a share of the Mid-Hoosier Conference title and celebrated the program’s first sectional title since 1999.

Rooks breaks school record at state long jump competition

Motivation and adrenaline put Southwestern sophomore Lilly Rooks on to the school record board.

 

Competing in the IHSAA State Track and Field Meet Saturday at Ben Davis High School in Indianapolis, Rooks took down the oldest girls track and field record at Southwestern with a personal-best attempt of 17 feet, 6.75 inches in the long jump.

 

That eclipsed the old record of 17-4 set in 1983 by Jeananna Gore.

 

Rooks entered the event off a regional best 17-3.25. Her new personal best helped her finish 13th at the state meet where she was seeded 20th.

 

Zionsville junior Michelle Nazarov won the long jump state title with a best attempt of 19-0.

 

On Friday at the IHSAA Boys State Track and Field Meet, also held at Ben Davis High School, Waldron senior Tyler Bowlby closed out his career with a 10th place finish in the long jump.

 

Bowlby set a new personal record on his first attempt, soaring 21-10. He nearly matched that in the championship flight with a distance of 21-9.25.

 

Bowlby did not automatically qualify for the state finals in regional competition but was added to the field and seeded 23rd.

 

Boonville senior Devin Mockobee won the state title at 23-3.75.

Southwestern seeking baseball program history at Morristown Regional

Chris Ingels knows he cannot counter the tradition that is Shakamak baseball.

 

The Lakers’ program has won two state titles and been state runner-up five times since 2008. The program’s 26 sectional titles are top 10 all-time in the state of Indiana.

 

What Ingels counters with is young men not afraid of the moment.

 

Class A, No. 7-ranked Southwestern, a program record 22-4 and sectional champion for the first time since 1999, takes on No. 10 Shakamak (14-7) at 10 a.m. Saturday in the first semifinal game of the Class A Morristown Regional.

 

“We are ready to go,” said Ingels Thursday. “I have guys that have played in regional soccer games and regional basketball games. They’ve played in big games. We’ve been in enough big games and enough big moments that it won’t be too much for us.”

 

The second semifinal pits No. 13 Oldenburg Academy (15-7) against unranked Traders Point Christian (8-13-1).

 

The championship game is set for 7 p.m.

 

Ingels and the Spartans collected their sectional trophy Monday afternoon which allowed the Southwestern coach the opportunity to travel to White River Valley to see Shakamak win its sectional title, 4-1, over Bloomfield.

 

“They are really good in every way,” said Ingels. “They put the ball in play against a really good pitcher from Bloomfield.

 

“They put a lot of pressure on them. The last four innings it felt like (Shakamak) was in complete control.”

 

Ingels will send Southwestern’s ace, Anick Hartsell, to the mound. The senior is 8-0 this season and excels at moving the ball around the zone.

 

Ingels’ only concern is his team doesn’t let one mistake turn into multiple ones because the margin of error to defeat the Lakers will be minimal.

 

A regional semifinal win sets up a possible rematch with Oldenburg Academy, who pounded the Spartans, 19-3, on April 17 at the South Dearborn Invitational.

 

In retrospect, Ingels believes that loss was a big catalyst to moving the season forward.

 

The Spartans had single conference games Thursday and Friday leading up to the invitational. Then South Dearborn stunned them in a 13-2 victory ahead of the game with the Twisters.

 

“We weren’t mentally prepared for that,” said Ingels. “We were immature how we approached that day. We were thinking a little highly of ourselves, got slapped in the face and didn’t handle it well. That knocked us back and we realized we had to approach things differently.”

 

Ingels credits a loss at Shelbyville a week later as helpful as well.

 

“That gave us some confidence,” he said of losing a late game lead against the Golden Bears. “A lot of little mistakes kept compounding on each other but we’ve been a lot tougher mentally and physically.”

 

Southwestern, Oldenburg Academy and Traders Point Christian are all seeking first regional titles. Shakamak has won 12 regionals.

First All-Quarter Horse Day features 13 races at Indiana Grand

The first of six All-Quarter Horse racing Saturdays takes place tomorrow at Indiana Grand with 13 races carded for the day.

 

Featured on the program will be two stakes, the 7th running of the $95,500 Harley Greene Derby in race 11 and the 12th running of the $83,200 Born Runner Classic in race 12.

 

First post for the day is 10 a.m.

 

Beach Blast has been tagged as the early morning line favorite for the Harley Greene Derby. The sophomore son of Escondido Beach makes his second start of the year off a second-place finish in the trials.

 

With three wins in six starts last season, the sorrel gelding is primed for another big year for trainer Randy Smith and owner Keith Bode and Brock Hutchinson.

 

Sammy Mendez will guide Beach Blast from post one in the 10-horse lineup in the final at odds of 5-2.

 

In the Born Runner Classic, another Escondido Beach product has been selected as the early morning line favorite. Beach Mercedes, making her first start of 2021 from post eight, will be a big threat in the field of 10.

 

The six-year-old mare, owned by breeder Sheri Miller, has 10 career wins in 29 career starts under the direction of Randy Smith.

 

Sammy Mendez will ride at odds of 7-5.

 

The next All-Quarter Horse Day at Indiana Grand is July 3, followed by racing July 24, Aug. 14, Sept. 4 and Oct. 9.

Waldron's Bowlby, Southwestern's Rooks headed to track and field state finals

A pair of Shelby County athletes will compete Friday and Saturday in the Indiana High School Athletic Association State Track and Field Championships.

 

Waldron senior Tyler Bowlby, who will graduate Saturday morning, is one of 28 athletes competing Friday at Ben Davis High School, 1200 N. Girls School Road in Indianapolis, in the state long jump competition.

 

Bowlby, who set a new personal record in the regional competition at 21 feet, seven inches, is seeded 23rd in the event.

 

Boonville senior Devin Mockobee has the best postseason jump this year at 23-2.5. New Albany junior Ja’raylan Johnson follows at 23-2.25.

 

The boys long jump competition is slated to start at 3 p.m.

 

Southwestern sophomore Lilly Rooks qualified for the state long jump event with a leap of 17-3.25 at regional competition.

 

On Saturday at 3 p.m. at Ben Davis High School, Rooks is seeded 20th out of 27 qualifiers.

 

She will seek to break Southwestern’s oldest track and field record still on the record board – 17-4 set by Jeanne Gore in 1983.

 

Zionsville junior Michelle Nazarov is the top seed at 18-8. Six more participants have cleared 18 feet in the postseason, including Lake Central senior LaTreasure Johnson at 18-5.5.

 

The state track and field meet is traditionally held at Indiana University in Bloomington. Pandemic protocols forced IU to step aside as host for 2021.

 

Admission to the state track and field meets is $12.

Southwestern baseball to face Shakamak in regional semifinal

The Indiana High School Athletic Association’s Class A Morristown Baseball Regional field is set.

 

Tenth-ranked Shakamak (14-7) will face seventh-ranked Southwestern (22-4) at 10 a.m. Saturday at Morristown High School in the first semifinal game.

 

The second semifinal features 13th-ranked Oldenburg Academy (16-7) and Traders Point Christian (8-13-1).

 

The regional championship is scheduled for 7 p.m.

 

In the other southern Indiana Class A regional at Lanesville, ninth-ranked Loogootee (19-7) takes on 14th-ranked Tecumseh (17-13) in one semifinal and fifth-ranked Borden (20-6-1) battles West Washington (12-12) in the other semifinal.

 

The two regional winners will meet June 12 at either the Mooresville Semistate or the Jasper Semistate.

Duke baseball headed to Knoxville Regional

Duke University baseball will make its third-consecutive NCAA Regional appearance after being selected as the No. 2 seed in the Knoxville (Tenn.) Regional of the 2021 NCAA Baseball Championship.

 

The regional will run from June 4-7 at Lindsey Nelson Stadium in Knoxville, Tenn.

 

 

Shelbyville High School graduate Damon Lux (photo) is a junior outfielder at Duke. He has appeared in 14 games this season, with one start, and is hitting .077 (1-for-13 with a double, a walk and two runs scored).

 

Duke (32-20) will open the regional against the No. 3 seed, Liberty (39-14), at noon Friday. The game will be broadcast live on the ACC Network.

 

Host and top-seed Tennessee (45-16) will face No. 4 seed Wright State (35-11) at 6 p.m. Friday.

 

The winner of the double-elimination NCAA Regional advances to a best-of-three NCAA Super Regional, which will run June 11-13 or June 12-14. The Knoxville Regional winner will face the winner of the Eugene (Oregon) Regional, which features No. 14 Oregon, Gonzaga, LSU and Central Connecticut State.

 

The College World Series will be played in Omaha, Nebraska, from June 19-29.

 

Duke’s 2021 NCAA Regional appearance marks the first time in program history that Duke will compete in the event in three consecutive seasons, having also reached regional play in 2018 and 2019. The 2020 national tournament was not held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Duke earned the ACC’s automatic bid into the tournament after winning its first ACC title in 60 years following a 1-0 victory Sunday over North Carolina State.