Madison County Week perseveres through the rain

Apr. 12—FAIRMOUNT — After several years of good luck, the unpredictable Indiana weather caused headaches for Madison County athletic directors during the spring week of Madison County tournaments.

Despite a window with a gap in the precipitation Friday, the problems continued as a technical glitch with the finish-line camera caused a delay to the start of the Madison County track and field championships at Madison-Grant.

While Argylls AD Ryan Plovick wrestled with the technical aspects, his counterparts at Alexandria, Elwood, Frankton and Pendleton Heights grappled with finding dry courts to complete the first round of the tennis tournament, now two days late in getting underway.

These struggles are all part of the job this time of year.

"Normally this is a fun week for all of us as well as the kids, the teams and the community," Anderson AD Steve Schindler said. "This week has been very hectic because of Mother Nature."

It was a week that started on time with softball and baseball first-round games Tuesday. But trouble began almost immediately when the Anderson-Liberty Christian doubleheader as well as the Elwood-Anderson Prep baseball games were suspended as rain interrupted play.

With a foreboding forecast and games to be finished, contingency plans needed to be activated as the ADs explored options.

"We had a monthly county AD meeting that we set up the initial plans and had everything in place for the week," Schindler said. "Once the weather came in Tuesday, we were still texting and making phone calls until 11 o'clock that night to figure out Wednesday to keep everything in place. It didn't quite work out that way."

As a result of their efforts, some semblance of a Madison County tournament week was on the verge of completion Friday night when competition resumed.

But even that could not go off without a hitch.

Lapel advanced to the tennis semifinals with a 3-2 win over the Argylls before yielding the M-G courts to Elwood and Frankton when afternoon rain made the Panthers' courts unplayable. The Eagles won both doubles matches, and Lainey Hamaker took the No. 2 singles match for a clinching 3-0 lead when rain washed out the final two matches.

The Bulldogs and Eagles will face off in the semifinals Saturday at Anderson High School alongside the host Indians and five-time reigning champion Alexandria. The Tigers knocked off the Arabians 5-0 after their matches — originally scheduled to be held at Pendleton Heights — were relocated to Alexandria and then to the Community Sports and Wellness Center back in Pendleton.

At the track championships, meanwhile, the miserable weather conditions made the fans uncomfortable and the county records nearly impossible to break.

The track athletes battled through consistent showers and occasional high winds, making for a tough night with the technical issues that were exacerbated by the weather.

Last year's girls John McCord Award winner, Ava Jarrell of Pendleton Heights, was making another strong case Friday night. She repeated as the 800-meter and 1,600-meter champion for the Arabians. Pendleton Heights also took the girls 3,200-meter relay.

Will Coggins was a two-time winner for the PH boys, matching Jarrell's feat by taking the 800 and 1,600 meters.

The defending boys champions were Madison-Grant, and they had another strong showing. They took the 3,200-meter and 400-meter relay races while Mavrick Griffin repeated as champion of the 110-meter hurdles and teammate Blayd Harris was first in the 300-meter hurdles. In the field events, Rosin White won the discus at 147-10 and William Ewer was the pole vault champion at 9-6.

For the M-G girls, they also won the 400-meter relay while Aida Sites — a member of that team — was the 100-meter dash champion while Brooklynn Hodupp won the shot put, and Abigail Brown repeated her 2023 pole vault title.

The Elwood girls nabbed a pair of champions as Savannah Garcia took first in the 110-meter hurdles and Alivia Boston took the top spot with a throw of 94-foot-11 in the discus.

Bubba Nunley picked up the first win for the Frankton boys with a leap of 20 feet in the long jump before Dillon Pratt took first in the 400-meter dash, edging teammate Blake Niccum.

For Anderson, Jamyiah Foster took the only girls win by clearing 4-6 in the high jump. For the boys, Christian Townsend and Collin Lewis streaked to the finish in the 100-meter dash with Townsend coming out on top.

J.J. Baxter collected a win for the Lapel boys with a heave of 46-4 in the shot put and Leila Wilson was a two-time winner for the girls, taking first in the 400 meters and in the long jump.

Contact Rob Hunt at or 765-640-4886.