2013-02-03T21:30:00Z REGION COLLEGIANS: PNC returns to ESPNBrian Waddle Times Correspondent
February 03, 2013 9:30 pm  • 

In case you missed it, Matthew McLaughlin didn’t.

The Purdue North Central freshman hit a shot 10 feet beyond half court at the buzzer last Saturday as the Panthers shocked Roosevelt 70-68.

The shot was shown as the top play on ESPN’s Top 10 plays list – the second time in as many years PNC has made news on the sports giant’s popular countdown.

PNC was fortunate to even have a chance for McLaughlin’s miracle. Roosevelt made only 9-of-23 free throws in the game.

Last season – almost a year to the day – PNC’s Mario Herron did the same thing.

Herron, a Hammond grad, hit a no-look, over-the-head scoop shot with seconds left as PNC beat Trinity International 62-60. That play cracked No. 4 on ESPN’s Top 10 plays.

PNC is coached by former longtime Morgan Twp. boys coach Matt Bush.

* Ohio University’s D.J. Cooper (Seton Academy) was recognized as “Distributor of the Month” in ESPN’s Men’s College Basketball Nation Blog for the month of January.

No player in Division I accounted for more assists per 40 minutes than Cooper, the 2009 Times Illinois Basketball Player of the Year. The 6-foot, senior point guard averaged 11.7 assists per 40 minutes and either scored or assisted on 48 percent of Ohio’s field goals. The team went 7-0 in the first month of 2013, thanks in large part to Cooper.

Cooper, a Cousy Award finalist, currently ranks first in the nation with an assist rate of 51. This is calculated by dividing a player’s assists by the amount of field goals made by his team while he is on the floor.

Women’s basketball

Juaniece Jackson (Calumet) reached a personal milestone by surpassing the 1,000 career point mark Wednesday night for Grace College.

The 5-foot-7 Gary native scored 30 points to lead the Lady Lancers to a victory over Spring Arbor. She’s the 15th member in Grace history to go over 1,000 points and is currently 13th on the all-time list with 1,027.

Jackson, a junior, needs just 41 points to enter Grace’s top 10 all-time scoring list.

Jackson’s 17.9 average is second in the Crossroads League, and she currently leads the CL in 3-point field goal percentage and steals.

Jackson’s 37-point outburst against Taylor on Jan. 8 is the most points a Crossroads League player has scored in a game in over 6 years.

Since the start of the new year, she’s averaged 22.8 points a game, leading the Lady Lancers to a 6-4 record.


Saint Xavier University continued its strong tradition of recruiting region players with the addition of Aaron Dye (Merrillville), Sean Jones (Crown Point) and Tyler Smith (Crown Point).

Dye, a wide receiver, finished with 62 catches for 1,294 yards and 16 touchdowns.

Jones is a 6-foot-3, 275-pound offensive lineman, while Smith, a defensive back, also started two games at tailback at C.P.

The Times welcomes information about local athletes for inclusion in Region Collegians. E-mail Brian Waddle at

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