Lady Giants seek third straight sectional crown

Zion Brown, sports editor

The 2020-21 IHSAA girls basketball tournament tips off this week with sectionals starting on Tuesday night. Ben Davis finished up their regular season at home last Friday in a 62-48 loss against Carmel. BD ended the regular season with a 13-7 record.

The Lady Giants drew a bye, so they will face the winner of Roncalli and Pike on Friday night. Ben Davis went 4-0 against teams in their sectional, with blowout victories over Southport and Perry.

On December 23, BD inched out a one point victory over Roncalli, 43-42. This came after a Natalie Howard buzzer beater gave the Giants a 58-56 win in the sectional semifinals last season. Head coach Stan Benge returned to Ben Davis this year after a seven-season stint with the Roncalli Royals. Should these teams play again, expect a tightly-contested game.

Ben Davis defeated Pike a few weeks ago but struggled defensively in a 72-63 game. Roncalli beat Pike 53-36 way back on November 12. BD will be looking to win its third consecutive sectional championship.

As for the rest of Class 4A, North Central seems to be the favorite. The 21-2 Panthers have won 15 straight games with one of their losses coming against Mount Notre Dame in Ohio. North Central’s other loss came to 18-2 Bedford North Lawrence, who will play in the New Albany sectional in the southern half of the bracket. The Panthers will play Crispus Attucks on Tuesday night, and the winner of that game will face Lawrence Central on Friday night.

Crown Point, Penn, and Carroll round out the top five of the IBCA poll with North Central (#1) and BNL (#4). Last year’s defending champion Lawrence North still finished with a 16-8 record and will be in Sectional 10 with North Central. Those two squads could meet in the sectional final on Saturday night.

This tournament always creates madness around the states with unexpected upsets all throughout. The pressure begins to rise at this time of year and only the most poised teams survive. It should be another entertaining February of girls basketball in Indiana.

WBDG adviser Jon Easter interviews coach Stan Benge for the weekly Benge buzz below.