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Bennett, Reillo headline IBCA/Subway Players of Week

By PAT McKEE of the IBCA

INDIANAPOLIS—Crispus Attucks senior Harold Bennett poured in 45 points in a game and Whiting senior G’Angelo Reillo posted a triple-double, and that twosome paces the winners in this week’s IBCA/Subway Player of the Week program.

Bennett and Reillo are joined by Austin senior Drew Buhr, Evansville Reitz sophomore Khristian Lander, Marquette Catholic senior Emma Nolan, Michigan City senior Hannah Noveroske, Northwestern junior Kendall Bostic and North Knox senior Makinzi Meurer as recipients for the week of Dec. 31-Jan. 5 in the recognition program coordinated by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association.

Reillo is the boys’ honoree and Nolan and Noveroske shared the girls’ for District 1. Bennett and Bostic received respective boys’ and girls’ accolades for District 2. Buhr and Lander are boys’ co-winners and Meurer is the girls’ recipient for District 3.

New Castle’s Luke Bumbalough was a nominee for the District 2 award for the boys after pouring in 37 points against Richmond and 35 points against Connersville in two road victories last weekend.

The 5-11 Bennett scored 45 points to lead the Attucks boys to a 95-81 victory over Urbana, Ill. He also added four rebounds and four steals while helping the Tigers improve to 10-3 in their only game of the week. Bennett hit 18-32 field goals, 3-of-6 3-pointers and 6-of-6 free throws en route to his big game.

Reillo produced a triple-double of 30 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists as the Whiting boys dropped an 87-83 overtime decision to Lake Station Edison. A 6-2 guard, Reillo added four steals and converted 14-21 from the floor and 2-of-2 from the line as the Oilers fell to 4-8.

The 6-1 Buhr and 6-2 Lander each averaged 30.5 points, respectively, for the Austin and Evansville Reitz boys.

Buhr opened with 41 points, eight rebounds, four assists and three steals in an 87-80 overtime victory over North Harrison. The Saint Louis baseball signee followed with 30 points, four rebounds, five assists and six steals in an 83-40 triumph over Eastern (Pekin). Over two games, Buhr was 18-of-35 on field goals, 9-of-17 from distance and 26-of-29 on free throws as the Eagles improved to 4-8.

Lander scored 31 points with five rebounds, six assists and three steals, but it was not enough in a 62-61 setback at Bedford North Lawrence. He unloaded for 40 points with eight rebounds, three assists and two steals as the Panthers defeated Terre Haute South 70-54. Lander was 25-of-37 from the floor, 10-of-15 on three pointers and 11-of-13 from the line as Reitz moved to 5-5 for the season.

The 6-2 Nolan tallied a career-high 38 points with 10 rebounds, five assists and three blocks as the Marquette Catholic girls knocked off Hammond Noll 78-55 in their only game of the week. Nolan sank 12-of-23 field goals, 4-of-8 from long range and 10-of-11 free throws as the Blazers improved to 15-1.

Noveroske averaged 30.0 points and 15.5 rebounds in two games for the Michigan City girls (13-4). The 6-4 forward scored 20 points with 14 rebounds and seven blocks in a 51-47 setback at Crown Point. The Xavier University recruit then exploded for 40 points with 17 rebounds and six blocks in an 85-28 victory at Bowman Academy. Noveroske became Michigan City’s all-time scoring leader in the latter game with 1,611 career points, passing the previous mark of 1,609 set by 2009 graduate TaKenya Nixon. Noveroske was 14-of-19 from the field and 12-of-17 from the line in the 40-point game, 22-of-27 and 20-of-31 in both games.

The 6-1 Bostic displayed tremendous shooting accuracy while averaging 22.0 points and 10.3 rebounds in keying the Northwestern girls (16-2) to three triumphs. The Michigan State commit scored 23 points with eight rebounds and four assists in an 81-25 victory over Eastern (Greentown). She followed with 21 points, seven rebounds and two assists in a 73-35 decision over West Lafayette. Bostic then tallied 22 points with 16 rebounds and five assists as the Tigers beat George Rogers Clark (Ky.) in the Indiana-Kentucky Challenge Cup at New Castle. For the three games, Bostic was 32-of-37 on field goals – 11-13, 10-12 and 11-12 – and 2-of-2 on free throws.

Meurer averaged 25.0 points and 7.0 rebounds to lead the North Knox girls to two victories. The 5-5 guard opened with 20 points, five rebounds, five assists and five steals in a 43-33 triumph at Southridge. The University of Evansville track signee followed with 30 points, nine rebounds, five assists and five steals as the Warriors defeated Eastern Greene 54-27. Over both games, Meurer hit 14-of-29 shots, including 2-of-4 from long range, plus 20-of-21 free throws as her team improved to 13-5.

This is the 11th season for the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association Player of the Week program and the seventh season it is presented by Subway Restaurants of Indiana, a banner sponsor of the IBCA.

Winners in the Player of the Week are chosen each week from each of the IHSAA’s three districts. Girls winners will be chosen from now through the week following Feb. 23. Boys winners will be chosen from now through the week following March 23.