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Faith Sparks drive to help out West Side's football program

Faith Sparks drive to help out West Side's football program

HOBART | One of the most significant days in the life of Joey Sparks occurred Aug. 23, 2013.

15 hours ago Photos

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'When the Game Stands Tall' inspires region's football community

'When the Game Stands Tall' inspires region's football community

Ryan Turley and his Hobart Brickies have a huge game tonight in South Bend. Instead of sleeping in before they open their Class 4A Sectional 18 game against St. Joseph's, the Bricks are going to the movies.

16 hours ago Photos

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STEVE HANLON: These picks are as good as gold

STEVE HANLON: These picks are as good as gold

For the 42nd year in a row, it seems, yours truly -- the humble, balding sports scribbler -- will tell you who is going to win our local football sectionals and what teams will raise the hardware at Lucas Oil Stadium.

20 hours ago
'Big Red' leads rebuilding E.C. into sectional opener against West Side

'Big Red' leads rebuilding E.C. into sectional opener against West Side

EAST CHICAGO | When Jay Novak was hired to take over the E.C. Central football program this summer, there were a lot of things to do. Time was of the essence.

October 22, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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Hobart's Smith has more than football on his mind

Hobart's Smith has more than football on his mind

HOBART | When speaking about the college football playing possibilities, Hobart senior Noah Smith did make the typical wish list. Schools like Notre Dame, Alabama or Florida State never crossed his lips.

October 22, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Hammond's Ja'Vante Jones does everything he can to keep playing

Hammond's Ja'Vante Jones does everything he can to keep playing

HAMMOND | Some people get the silver spoon when the bowl of four-star soup is brought to their table. Others do not. That is life, unfortunately.

October 21, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Noll seniors work hard to keep turnaround season above water

Noll seniors work hard to keep turnaround season above water

Sometimes a fresh start is exactly what a person needs. A new day with fresh flowers and unknown experiences. Take an easy breath.

October 20, 2014 5:26 pm Photos

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Lake Station's Lemley playing for his 'brother'

Lake Station's Lemley playing for his 'brother'

Kody Lemley and Kyle Gooch have known each other "forever." The two Lake Station senior football players have a very close bond.

October 19, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Andrean ready to make run for second straight undefeated trip to Indianapolis

Andrean ready to make run for second straight undefeated trip to Indianapolis

MERRILLVILLE | Phil Mason stood in the middle of the muddy field of Father Eckert Stadium on Friday night and he could've run for mayor. Countless friends and supporters of Andrean football came up to give him a hug.

October 18, 2014 5:30 pm
STEVE HANLON: How 'The James Gang' got started

STEVE HANLON: How 'The James Gang' got started

MERRILLVILLE | Surprisingly, the backbone of the 2014 Lowell Red Devils had a start far away from the corn and Indiana Route 2. It began at 5959 Broadway back in the 1990s.

October 17, 2014 10:00 pm Photos

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Hanover's Luke Maciejewski and Wildcats are learning to fly

Hanover's Luke Maciejewski and Wildcats are learning to fly

CEDAR LAKE | The lights were on, buzzing on a dark Friday night. The stands were filled with football-crazy fans sopping up the newness of it all. The collective pulse of the event was causing choppy waves on nearby Cedar Lake.

October 16, 2014 11:00 pm Photos

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STEVE HANLON: So just what is a really big game?

STEVE HANLON: So just what is a really big game?

OK, class. Time for a pop quiz.

October 16, 2014 5:00 pm
Wheeler to host clinic on life along with a little bit of basketball

Wheeler to host clinic on life along with a little bit of basketball

Maybe it was the heavy interest in football a generation ago in Northwest Indiana that kept fall basketball clinics from sprouting.  These hoops think-tank sessions are commonplace In central and southern Indiana,

October 14, 2014 5:30 pm
Lowell gets Griffith in opener taking big momentum into postseason

Lowell gets Griffith in opener taking big momentum into postseason

In the past four Octobers, Lowell hasn't won a single game. The Red Devils last postseason win was against Fort Wayne Dwenger in the Class 4A semistate in 2009.

October 12, 2014 9:15 pm Photos

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Coaches gamble with what to show as postseason approaches

Coaches gamble with what to show as postseason approaches

The celebration was only seconds old and people were already looking ahead. With the IHSAA postseason draw on their minds, many in Rensselaer were thinking about a semistate rematch with Lafayette Central Catholic.

October 12, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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STEVE HANLON: Rensselaer lives the tale of region past

STEVE HANLON: Rensselaer lives the tale of region past

RENSSELAER | The afternoon started in Hobart. Got stuck downtown by the Brickies' homecoming parade. This stuff is still cool to me. Made a sign of the cross when I drove by the Brickie Bowl.

October 10, 2014 10:00 pm Photos

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Andrean's Barajas faces challenges of new national media attention

Andrean's Barajas faces challenges of new national media attention

MERRILLVILLE | It is something most every high school athlete covets, strives for: to attain a level of excellence where their talents and personalities are noticed by all.

October 09, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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STEVE HANLON: Is the DAC really RIP?

STEVE HANLON: Is the DAC really RIP?

Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever has the gap between the best team and the worst team in the Duneland Athletic Conference been so narrow. Never.

October 09, 2014 6:45 pm
Rensselaer's Arihood has deep connection that supports Bombers football

Rensselaer's Arihood has deep connection that supports Bombers football

Herb Arihood was the mayor of Rensselaer from 2000 through 2012.

October 09, 2014 6:20 pm Photos

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Josh Barajas honored by Andrean for U.S. Army All-American Bowl

Josh Barajas honored by Andrean for U.S. Army All-American Bowl

MERRILLVILLE | Rarely, if ever, do schools have pep rallies on a Monday morning.

October 06, 2014 5:30 pm
Historic hoops coaching changes come to Indiana

Historic hoops coaching changes come to Indiana

The current state of high school basketball is not your daddy's version of Hoosier Hysteria. No, not at all.

October 04, 2014 5:30 pm
Three area teams remain unbeaten through Week 7 of football season

Three area teams remain unbeaten through Week 7 of football season

Since the IHSAA began a state football tournament in 1973, there have been 184 state champions. Of those ultimate winners, only 77 have done so with an undefeated record.

October 04, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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STEVE HANLON: Broadway runs all the way to Wheatfield

STEVE HANLON: Broadway runs all the way to Wheatfield

WHEATFIELD | There have been whispers and rumors running up and down the streets of Northwest Indiana this autumn. I've heard them. You've heard them. Heck, some of you have likely said the same things.

October 03, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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Lake Central and the region say good-bye to the Burial Grounds

Lake Central and the region say good-bye to the Burial Grounds

ST. JOHN | It doesn't have the rich history or quirky surroundings that Hobart's Brickie Bowl did. No trains tooting by or fans watching games on a tree branch.

October 02, 2014 10:15 pm Photos

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Andrean's Joe Rodish happy to be a Hoosier

Andrean's Joe Rodish happy to be a Hoosier

MERRILLVILLE | There was a lot of talk when Josh Barajas transferred from Mount Carmel to Andrean more than a year ago. But he wasn't the only football player who made the caravan from Chicago to Merrillville.

October 02, 2014 8:45 pm Photos

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The Top 10 games ever played at the Burial Grounds

Here is a quick look at the Top 10 games ever played at Lake Central's Burial Grounds. Tonight's game against Chesterton will be the last game played there.

October 02, 2014 8:00 pm
STEVE HANLON: He has fought the good fight, he has finished the course

STEVE HANLON: He has fought the good fight, he has finished the course

NEW CHICAGO | Before every River Forest cross country meet, junior Christopher Ramos gathers the nine Ingots on the small-school team, they lock arms and bow their heads.

October 02, 2014 7:00 pm
STEVE HANLON: There was a lot of RDP in this Little Brothers Bowl

STEVE HANLON: There was a lot of RDP in this Little Brothers Bowl

LOWELL | We've all heard this tale time and time again, in different schools and in different programs and different decades. Over and over again.

September 26, 2014 10:00 pm
STEVE HANLON: This is what it is all about

STEVE HANLON: This is what it is all about

Football is under attack in America — like a blitzing defensive back from the blindside.

September 25, 2014 7:00 pm
Calumet's Harris leads Warriors to a new place in history

Calumet's Harris leads Warriors to a new place in history

CALUMET TWP. | Quinton Harris was sitting on the porch of his Glen Park home with his mother a few years ago. It was a beautiful summer afternoon. Norman Rockwell's brush could've immortalized the moment with a few strokes.

September 25, 2014 6:45 pm Photos

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Whiting's Krzyston is the Oilers' rock on defense

Whiting's Krzyston is the Oilers' rock on defense

WHITING | Kris Krzyston is not your typical Whiting Oiler. He's not a Bears fan. He doesn't score touchdowns at a moment's notice. Yet, he lives and breathes the game that comes alive each fall in the little town on Lake Michigan's shore.

September 11, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Crown Point's Kukurugya shines bright on the international stage

Crown Point's Kukurugya shines bright on the international stage

CROWN POINT | It started simply enough. It is the kind of story starter that makes you want to shake your head.

September 07, 2014 9:30 pm Photos

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Lake Central's Davis and 'D' leads to win at 'The Luke'

Lake Central's Davis and 'D' leads to win at 'The Luke'

INDIANAPOLIS | The day before the first NFL Sunday kicks off, Antwan Davis was in the end zone of Lucas Oil Stadium watching a perfectly spinning ball dart in his direction.

September 06, 2014 6:15 pm Photos

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Offense explodes at prep football changes around the state

Offense explodes at prep football changes around the state

The cool autumn wind enveloped the place. Everyone in town — no, in the county — was there. It was if Bronko Nagurski and Jim Brown were in attendance, wildly applauding old-school football at its finest.

September 04, 2014 10:00 pm Photos

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Lake Central's Studer pumped to play in Peyton's Place

Lake Central's Studer pumped to play in Peyton's Place

ST. JOHN | There was only one emotion for Colin Studer in March of 2012 when Peyton Manning was cut by the Indianapolis Colts.

September 04, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Teams prepare for the long conference race run in football

Teams prepare for the long conference race run in football

It's been said winning a sectional championship in football is the most difficult because to take home the hardware you have to be very good for three weeks, three Friday nights.

August 30, 2014 5:45 pm Photos

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Despite court battles from coast to coast, many area football coaches still do pregame prayers

Despite court battles from coast to coast, many area football coaches still do pregame prayers

Jay Novak was obviously nervous last Friday night. The first-year football coach at E.C. Central was going through the pregame checklist before his Cardinals took the field for the season-opener at Hammond.

August 28, 2014 9:00 pm Photos

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Speedy Echols leads Hammond to the Wildcats opening win

Speedy Echols leads Hammond to the Wildcats opening win

HAMMOND | Midsummer didn't look too good off Calumet Avenue. Hammond's football coach, Eric Schreiber, had left for Clark in the night. His replacement, Roosevelt Moore, was not officially hired until the opening day of practice.

August 28, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Dillard not going to LaLumiere; Patterson staying at Lake Station

Dillard not going to LaLumiere; Patterson staying at Lake Station

Davon Dillard is not at LaLumiere, the prep school in LaPorte. And the Indiana Junior All-Star, who has been offered by California, Creighton, Iowa, Pittsburgh, Providence and Purdue has never officially left Bowman Academy.

August 26, 2014 9:00 pm Photos

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Adjustments the key for teams from Week 1 to Week 2

Adjustments the key for teams from Week 1 to Week 2

There's been an adage around prep football for a long time. The biggest improvement a team makes usually comes between Week 1 and Week 2.

August 23, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Lights still not working at West Side's football facility

Lights still not working at West Side's football facility

Highland's scrimmage at West Side on Aug. 15 was supposed to start at 7 p.m. But the first snap took place at 6 p.m. because of a common issue at the Gary school's football facility.

August 23, 2014 5:30 pm Photos

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Richie steps down as Lowell boys basketball coach

Richie steps down as Lowell boys basketball coach

This is not the time for the boys basketball coach at Lowell High School to step down. But that's exactly what Nate Richie did recently, going 46-39 over the last four seasons.

August 22, 2014 6:30 pm
Andrean's Barajas is a one-of-a-kind football player

Andrean's Barajas is a one-of-a-kind football player

MERRILLVILLE | The sidewalk was mostly empty. Almost barren. The cold, wintery wind swept over the hills of Fort Thomas, Ky.

August 22, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Paliga ready to lead 59ers on another run

Paliga ready to lead 59ers on another run

MERRILLVILLE | It's like Sammy Hagar taking over for David Lee Roth or Andrew Johnson stepping in for Abraham Lincoln. A daunting shadow is there, always, in the background.

August 22, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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It takes geography, history and a little hatred to make a good rivalry

It takes geography, history and a little hatred to make a good rivalry

Keith Kilmer already knows what he'll see when he takes his Lowell Red Devils onto Bulldog Turf in Crown Point. He chuckles ahead of time.

August 21, 2014 6:00 pm Video Photos

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Gavit picks Barnhizer as new athletic director and boys hoops coach

Gavit picks Barnhizer as new athletic director and boys hoops coach

Mark Barnhizer has been hired as Gavit's new athletic director. And the 2003 Indiana All-Star coach will also take over the Gladiators boys basketball program.

August 12, 2014 11:30 pm Photos

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Crown Point's Barclay commits to play hoops at SE Louisiana

Crown Point's Barclay commits to play hoops at SE Louisiana

The dream seemed to be over. Crown Point senior forward Bret Barclay ended his final prep basketball season with the Bulldogs in March. The future seemed unclear.

August 12, 2014 6:52 pm Photos

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Hammond stays in house in picking Wildcats new football coach

Hammond stays in house in picking Wildcats new football coach

HAMMOND | Bernie Krueger coached football at Hammond High School from 1955 through 1972. Stability was the key in that other era when the Wildcats were winning mythical state championships.

August 04, 2014 8:15 pm Photos

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