By Clyde Hughes, Printed in the Lafayette Journal & Courier, Oct. 16, 2014
KOKOMO – It happened nearly
within a blink of an eye. One moment it looked like the Fishers Tigers
were banging away at a goal chance, then the next it was the Harrison
Raiders on their way to the regional final after a thrilling overtime
victory at Kokomo High School Thursday night.
The Raiders’ Cole
Boyer tallied the winning goal when he parked a long free kick by
Christian Stiverson into the upper left corner of the goal just out of
reach of Fishers goalie Trey Beatty with 4:58 left in the second
overtime, giving Harrison the stunning 1-0 victory over No. 10-ranked
The Tigers handed Harrison (17-1-2) its lone loss, 3-0, earlier in the season.
was happy for me but more for my teammates,” Boyer said. “I was happy
that we were able to come back and beat the team that beat us, because
we didn’t have a good showing the first time we played team. I was just
at the right place at the right time.”
Harrison moves on to take
on the host Kokomo Wildkats (14-6), which it beat 2-0 earlier in the
season. Kokomo scored all of its goals in the second half to whip Jay
County 5-0 in the first regional semifinal.
After the Raiders
withstood a furious offensive assault by Fishers in the second half and
overtime, it appeared the contest would come down to penalty kicks until
referees stopped play with Harrison driving down the field because of
an injured Tigers player at roughly the five-minute mark.
injury break, which appeared to break the Raiders’ momentum, actually
gave Harrison a chance to plan what proved to be its game-winning
strategy at midfield.
“Jeremy Dewell and I talked it over and we
decided that I would take the kick and float it over the penalty kick
spot,” Stiverson said. “Dewell told me Cole was right there to run into
it and he’s one of the fastest players on the team, if not the fastest.
When he made it, I just went crazy. I was so happy.”
Up until that
point, it was Fishers that dominated the second half and looked like it
would be the team that would score the crucial first goal, as the
Tigers had four shots on goal compared to Harrison’s one in the second
half and four more in the two overtimes to the Raiders’ one.
Harrison’s defense, led by goalie Kyle Bugay, turned the Tigers away
time and time again, keeping the game scoreless on the muddy,
slow-playing field at Kokomo.
“I think our boys were taken aback
by the conditions of the field, but they haven’t been to regionals
before and I felt they were on cruise control in the first half,” said
Fishers coach Robbie Pels.
“We had our chances in the second half,
but we didn’t finish. All the credit goes to Harrison. They really came
out and played hard from the very beginning and it really showed. Bryan
(Clouse) is an excellent coach and he really had his players ready for
Clouse said he knew after going getting just four shots
on goal against Fishers in the first contest that the Raiders would
need to make the most of their scoring opportunities in this game.
knew we could play a lot better than what we did the first time we
played them,” Clouse said. “The great thing is that I don’t think we’ve
hit our ceiling yet. (Fishers) kind of held on there in the second half,
but I was confident that if we got an opportunity that we could net
one, and Cole did a nice job of getting it in.”
Sunday, November 2, 2014
By Clyde Hughes, Printed in the Kokomo Tribune, Sept. 27, 2014
The sophomore saved her best golf the season for the regional tournament, shooting a 79 and qualifying for the IHSAA state golf tournament next week at the Prairie View Golf Course in Carmel along with Western sophomore Minka Gill and Northwestern senior Ashton Martin.
The fact that Gill and Martin advanced to the finals was probably not a surprise after both shot a 75 to tie for the medalist honors last weekend at Western Sectional at the Chippendale Golf Club.
But Jones, who shot an 87 in the sectional but advanced to the regional as an individual even though her team placed eighth last Saturday, shot a 38 over the first nine holes, putting here one shot off Lafayette Central Catholic's Morgan Brown as one of tournament's early leaders.
She shot a 41 on the back nine, which allowed her to tie Martin with a 79 overall to move on to the state tournament. It was a career best for Jones, who said she never shot better than an 80.
"I thought it was an honor just to make it to regionals so I didn't want to come here and disappoint anyone," Jones said. "To be honest, my goal was under 100 because it was reachable. I've never been under 80 before, so I guess that was a good place to do it."
Jones admitted that making the state tournament has caused her to rethink some of her goals and priorities as she entered the biggest stage high school girl's golf next week.
"It would be a huge honor and great experience to play with some of those girls," Jones said. "I'm very proud. I hit a bunch a great shots and know I can do it. It's a real motivator to know that I really can play well."
For Martin, the Northwestern senior, reaching the state tournament was the result of a long cat-and-mouse game that finally came to an end.
"I've been trying to get this for four years and I'm finally going [to state]," said Martin, who led her Purple Tigers into the regional competition Saturday. "I was sitting inside and haven't been paying attention when my name was called."
Martin said she knew the regional competition was tough. The tournament featured five state-ranked teams — No. 7 Lake Central, No. 12 Chesterton, No. 14 Lafayette Jeff, No. 17 Valparaiso and No. 19 Crown Point.
"I was really nervous about [Saturday] because I know a lot of college coaches wanted to see me at state," Martin said. "Now that I know that I'm going, it's really exciting. I wish my team could be there, but I know they will be there behind me."
Northwestern finished seventh with a 352 while Western was sixth with a 350.
Gill led the Panthers with a 78, one shot ahead of Martin, to advance to the state tournament as well. She said the momentum of playing well at sectionals helped her in continuing her good play into regional competition.
"I really played my game and stuck in there," Gill said. "I struggled on some holes but still saved them with some pretty decent scores on the holes. I did my best to focus. I think my game is starting to click pretty well. I just feel blessed to be playing good golf right now. Last week gave me a lot more confidence."
Western golf coach Seven Hoppes said he will depend on sophomores like Gill to lead the Panthers back to regionals next year and give them a good shot of reaching the state tournament as a team.
"We played a lot of good golf [Saturday]," Hoppes said. "It's such an advantage for my young team to play all of these state-ranked teams. We've got three kids coming back off this team and some younger kids coming in. We expect to be there next year. These young kids are going to be motivated and our goal will be to get to the state finals. That's always our goal."
Kokomo's Lucy Mavrick shot a 102 and Taylor's Daysi Jarvis shot a 104.
Lake Central won the team title with a score of 325, followed by Valparaiso's 330 and Crown Point's 336. Lafayette Jeff's Samantha Hatter was the medalist, shooting a 71.
By Clyde Hughes, Printed in the Lafayette Journal & Courier, Sept. 27, 2014
BATTLE GROUND – Those were not tears of joy coming from Samantha Hatter’s face as she walked past some of the state’s best high school golfers to accept Lafayette Jeff Regional medalist honors Saturday evening.
The Lafayette Jeff senior’s 71 earned her a state finals berth for the second time in three years.
Hatter’s tears were for her teammates. She had learned moments earlier that No. 14 Jeff was edged for the third and final team qualifying spot for the state tournament by No. 19 Crown Point, 336-339.
Seventh-ranked Lake Central won the hotly contested regional with a 325, followed by No. 17 Valparaiso’s 330. The score really stung considering the Bronchos missed a state berth by one stroke a year ago.
“It’s good to go back to state, but it would be so much better with my teammates,” Hatter said. “It’s so heartbreaking. We all tried our hardest, but at the end of the day it wasn’t enough. That’s the sad truth.”
The truth is there was not much more Hatter could have done to help her team. Her 71 was already two strokes better than runner-up Tiffany Curtis of Crown Point.
“The one thing I did differently was a matter of confidence and staying positive the whole time and kept telling myself the same thing over and over again,” Hatter said. “I tried not thinking about what’s ahead of me but staying in the moment and that helped a bunch. I didn’t think about anything else until I came of the course.”
Central Catholic junior Morgan Brown, the sectional and City/County champion, placed third overall with a 75 and advanced to the state tournament for the third consecutive year. Brown was one of the early finishers and found herself caught in the waiting game while other golfers finished their rounds.
“I felt I couldn’t drop many birdie putts out there,” Brown said. “My main goal was to finish here and move on to state, and it’s a whole new round there.”
Brown said her strategy of concentrating on her game and not getting caught up in what other golfers are doing did not change in regional despite the level of competition being the best it has been all season.
“There’s definitely a lot of good girls here, but that doesn’t usually affect my play,” Brown said. “I think there’s a little bit more (pressure) than in sectionals, but I don’t think it’s enough to make or break a round. You just have to handle it and play your own game.”
Brown’s 37 was among the leaders at the turn and her 75 was the top score most of the day until Hatter and Curtis, who were among the last golfers to finish their rounds, posted their results.
McCutcheon, making its first regional appearance under coach Avery Boaz, finished 10th with a score of 370. Twin Lakes was 12th (378), Rensselaer 15th (405) and Benton Central 16th (407).
“It was a good experience and sad the season is over,” McCutcheon senior Aspen Rogers said. “It was a lot of hard work to get here, but I’m glad we made it. I hope all five of us seniors left a legacy for the other golfers at McCutcheon.”
By Clyde Hughes, Lafayette Journal & Courier, Printed Aug. 31, 2014
Dewayne Moffitt, president of the Lafayette Human Relations Commission, said he believed what has happened in Ferguson, Missouri, could never happen in Lafayette — until he went to Ferguson about a week ago.
Moffitt, the student success coordinator at Tecumseh Middle School and former executive director at Hanna Community Center, said he saw how the crowd protesting the shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown changed from calm and supportive to unruly and defiant in a matter of an hour.
He also saw how little it took for a small group of people, cloaked around peaceful protesters, could provoke law enforcement officers and turn a rally into a tear-gas throwing, Molotov cocktail-tossing spectacle that captured the attention of the nation and the world.
"If you would have asked me that question before I drove down there, I would have said there's no way that could happen here," said Moffitt, who said he made the trip on his own accord to see for himself what was happening and to learn from the experience.
"Now I'm not so sure. … There are some people here with their own agendas that would try to take advantage of a situation like this and require action from law enforcement. I still would like to think it's very unlikely, but there are some who have an agenda to create chaos."
Looting and violence have gotten in the way of some real — albeit unfortunately all-too-familiar — issues, regardless the perceptions of African-American men and blacks in general. Actually, these issues seem to feel like well-traveled territory.
Unrealistic fear of African-American youths walking in the neighborhood? Yes, covered that with Trayvon Martin. Excessive force to subdue African-American suspects? We just saw that in New York in July with Eric Garner. How about simply fearing African-American youths in general in connection to just everyday life? Covered that with Florida teen Jordan Davis in 2012.
The New Republic recently reported on a 2002 University of Colorado study that found in a shooting simulation that white undergraduates shot unarmed blacks (1.43 per 20 trials) at a higher rate compared to whites (1.23).
Results of a similar study published in Psychological Sciences in 2005 found that in simulation, Florida State University police officers also were more likely to mistakenly shoot unarmed African-American suspects than whites.
Granted, some would question how this relates to real-life situations, but the consistency of the findings are disturbing and worrisome.
But there are much broader and important issues at play here. These deaths were all in the making long before they happened, simmering on the stove of misunderstanding, miscommunication and distrust.
We see them boil over in protest and riots, but every one of these incidents has built over time because we — individually, collectively and as a community — refuse to acknowledge and understand the different worlds we continue to live in. These misunderstandings, miscommunication and distrust cross racial, ethnic, gender and sexual orientation backgrounds.
Actually asking someone to step outside their comfort zone into one of these worlds? Forget about it. Yet that ignorance creates a new Ferguson waiting to happen on a daily basis.
We can give Officer Darren Wilson life in prison and send him to hard labor in Siberia, but it will not solve a single problem of the Ferguson protesters. That's not suggesting Wilson should not be held accountable for Brown's shooting, if that is where the evidence leads.
But if you want to address the real problem of Ferguson, or Sanford, Florida, or New York City or Jacksonville, building an opportunity to bridge to gaps — in some cases gulfs — of experiences are critical.
The Diversity Roundtable Conversation Circles are taking a step in that direction by providing an outlet for sharing diverse experiences. They will begin again Sept. 22. The circles, which include people from all walks of life, are an effort in reaching across some of those barriers.
I know, you're asking the question: "Can talking stop a police officer's bullet from killing an unarmed teen?" No, it can't. What I am suggesting is that it's a first step in keeping that bullet from being fired. Let's not let Lafayette become another Ferguson.
Clyde Hughes is a member of the Greater Lafayette Commerce's Diversity Roundtable.
What you can do
The Greater Lafayette Diversity Roundtable will hold a callout for its Conversation Circles series at 7 p.m. Sept. 22 at the Tippecanoe County Public Library, 627 South St. For more information, contact Greater Lafayette Commerce at 765-742-4044.
Ashley Smith did not exactly think she needed strangers to pray for her the day before Pride Lafayette’s OutFest celebration downtown in early August, but she realized it was the only way she could get a group of protesters to leave her and fellow Pride members alone at the time.
The protest and backlash come as part of the job, unfortunately, for Pride Lafayette, the organization that has become the voice of the LGBT community and its allies in Greater Lafayette. Smith has learned to take it all in stride.
“They were trying to mess with us while we were setting up,” Smith said about the increase in the number of protesters at OutFest this year. “I had to stand in the middle of them while they prayed for me. It was wonderful. I have a thick skin.”
Despite the protesters, Pride Lafayette has continued to find increased acceptance. The Greater Lafayette Commerce’s Diversity Roundtable selected the organization for one of its DRT Diversity Leader Awards. The awards will be given at the Greater Lafayette Commerce’s annual dinner Sept. 17 at Purdue University.
Pride Lafayette will be honored with Old National Bank and the Wabash Center, along with an individual award winner.
“I think (the award) shows great strides for Pride Lafayette and the community as a whole, seeing that the Chamber is recognizing how much we’ve done for the community and all the hard work we’ve put in,” Smith said. “We’ve put ourselves out there, and we think it’s wonderful that they’ve decided to recognize us.”
It’s still not easy for Pride Lafayette members to stand out, even after seven OutFest celebrations, numerous events and their public, enthusiastic support for same-sex marriage in Indiana this year.
“To be honest, (Pride Lafayette) had to create a position for me because normally the media person is supposed to be the president of the organization, but we’ve had so many folks who don’t feel comfortable putting their face out there,” Smith said, explaining the hesitance of some members.
“I just happen to be very thick-skinned. I believe in standing up for what’s right. When we put ourselves out there, sometimes we get backlash and sometimes we don’t.”
In fact, everyone in Greater Lafayette should be grateful to have someone like Smith and Pride Lafayette in the community. When we talk about accomplishing the goal of making Greater Lafayette a great place for all people, it’s groups such as Pride Lafayette that will make the community live up to that promise.
Smith said Pride has been grateful for the support it has received from the community, including Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski and West Lafayette Mayor John Dennis. If we really want to make Greater Lafayette a welcoming place for everyone, though, we not only want, but need, Pride Lafayette. Hasn’t it been part of this country’s history to have such individuals and groups around to make us live up to the freedoms and rights that have been promised to us in the Constitution?
Those freedoms and rights have not come easy for many minorities in this country, but we all benefit when we all can celebrate the same justice, progress and liberty.
Martin Luther King Jr. once wrote in his letter from the Birmingham jail: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
We should all feel a little less threatened, and not more, because of Pride Lafayette.
Hughes is a member of the Greater Lafayette Commerce’s Diversity Roundtable.