No.6 Stars hoard the HHC title with destructive 63-16 victory over Floyd Central

GALENA – BNL’s Karsyn Norman attacks the defense during Saturday’s HHC clash with Floyd Central. Norman scored 28 points as the sixth-ranked Stars completed a perfect league run with as 63-16 win.

By Justin Sokeland

GALENA – The mythical trophy, the imaginary championship plaque, would only need one name chiseled into it. Bedford North Lawrence rules alone. The Hoosier Hills Conference crown, after a two-year absence, has been returned to the program that sets the standard for excellence.

The No.6 Stars, who had already clinched a share of their 22nd league title, refused to share. And they sent that message across the league with a destructive conquest of the final challenger. Hoarders, they are. There’s always room for one more heavy piece of hardware. Make no mistake, this title carries some weight, because of the work it takes to win it.

With a sensational performance from senior catalyst Karsyn Norman, BNL roared to a dominating 63-16 road victory over Floyd Central on Saturday afternoon. Norman had 28 points and Madisyn Bailey added 14 as the Stars (18-3 overall) capped a perfect run through their six league foes. And this triumph was quite the coronation march.

BNL won its first outright championship since 2015. There have been other shared titles since, so this sizzling charge to a 6-0 mark showcases how tough it can be when the target is always on BNL’s uniform.

“It’s been a while since we’ve done that by ourselves, so it means a lot,” BNL coach Jeff Allen said. “The kids understand that. It’s very tough. It’s a hard thing to do. Our conference, year in and year out, is very competitive. Going undefeated is really a highlight to your year.”

These highlights were really on the defensive end. The Highlanders (8-10, 2-3 in the league) managed only one field goal in three of the four quarters. Floyd coach Randy Gianfagna called BNL’s overwhelming performance a “buzzsaw.” He could have used many other destructive machines – wood chipper, paper shredder or meat grinder come to mind. The Highlanders were guilty of 28 turnovers.

“They’re starting to really play well,” he said. “You’re picking your poisons, then you turn it over and give them easy buckets. It snowballed. Credit to them.”

GALENA – BNL’s Madisyn Bailey rises for a close-range shot in the paint. Bailey had 14 points.

The credit goes to Chloe Spreen, who ignited a 20-3 first quarter with six points (while Floyd had 12 turnovers). Credit to Norman, who took charge when Spreen got into foul trouble and scored 10 points during a second-quarter burst to a 32-5 advantage. Credit Bailey, who popped a pair of treys (including a buzzer-beater that might have been a tad late but was counted) while BNL triggered the mercy rule (for the running clock) with 2:20 left in the third. No suspense, no drama, no sweat.

“They played extremely hard,” Allen said. “On the defensive end, I thought we were very good. They worked well as a unit. We had given up some points the last few games. I talked about sitting down and guarding, make that our focus.”

That intensity never waned. Floyd managed one bucket in the third and one more in the fourth. Nobody had more than four points. That was about as perfect as it gets.

“Defense,” Norman said. “Keeping them from scoring. Under 20 was our goal.” And that was accomplished for the second straight time in the series.

GALENA – Karsyn Norman looks for room to drive. She has hit 38 of her last 56 shots over 14 quarters.

Norman continued her recent hot streak. In the last 3 1/2 games, she has hit 38 of 56 shots. That’s remarkable. That’s 68 percent, which is difficult for a wide-open post player to do.

“She’s being more aggressive on the bounce, looking to attack,” Allen said. “There are very few people who can stop her from penetrating when she wants to. It’s created a different flow to her offense. She’s doing a great job.”

“I kind of proved myself, to myself,” Norman said with a smile.

There’s little left to prove now. BNL will start to shift priorities to the postseason for the final two weeks of the regular season. The Stars will be solid sectional favorites with their unbeaten, and unchallenged, league dictatorship.

“It means so much,” Norman said. “I am so thrilled. In the four years I’ve been here, it’s the first time we’ve outright won it. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I’m glad we got it done. Everybody is gunning for us. Always.”

BNL will return to action on Jan. 21 at East Central.

GALENA – BNL’s Chloe Spreen scoops up a shot in the lane. Spreen scored 11 points.


3s FGs FTs R F Pts

2 Chloe Spreen, f 1-2 4-10 2-2 3 4 11

22 Mallory Pride, f 0-0 2-6 0-0 7 1 4

24 Madisyn Bailey, g 3-5 4-11 3-4 2 2 14

20 Emma Brown, g 1-4 1-5 0-0 2 1 3

21 Karsyn Norman, g 2-5 10-14 6-6 4 1 28

3 Katie Baumgart 0-1 0-1 0-0 0 0 0

50 Emma Crane 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0

44 Ellie Tillett 0-0 0-0 0-0 1 0 0

32 Trinidy Bailey 1-1 1-1 0-0 0 0 3

12 Tori Nikirk 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0

23 Katie Godlevske 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0

40 Bella Jackson 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0

Totals 8-18 22-48 11-12 23 9 63


3s FGs FTs R F Pts

34 Nora Gibson, f 0-3 0-5 0-0 5 3 0

12 Elise Coleman, f 0-1 1-6 0-0 3 0 2

51 Callie Celichowski, c 0-0 2-3 0-2 4 0 4

4 Ava Hausz, g 0-1 0-2 0-0 3 2 0

23 Carly Fonda, g 1-4 1-4 0-0 1 2 3

21 Samara Miller 1-3 1-4 0-3 2 2 3

44 Natalya Gaines 0-0 0-3 0-0 3 0 4

33 Megan Czarnecki 0-0 2-3 0-0 3 0 4

Totals 2-13 7-30 0-5 30 10 16

Bedford NL 20 18 16 9 – 63

Floyd Central 3 9 2 2 – 16

Turnovers – BNL 5, Floyd Central 28

Field goal percentage – BNL 22-48 (.458); Floyd Central 7-30 (.233)

Free throw percentage – BNL 11-12 (.917); Floyd Central 0-5 (.000)