WARSAW – The Ink Free News sports staff collaborated on our annual year-end Top 10 lists for both individuals and teams in our coverage area. The accomplishments span all three calendar seasons – fall, winter and spring – and our lists will be split into four stories worth of recognition over the course of this week. The team and individual lists will be split in half, spotlighting No. 10 through No. 6 and then No. 5 through No. 1 of the respective individual and team lists.
Without further adieu, here is the first series of athletes who made our top 10:
10. Comrade, My Comrade – Owen Glogovsky went the distance, and then some, as a huge contributor the past four years for the Warsaw track and cross country programs.
The senior star ended his prep running career by placing sixth at the Track State Finals in Bloomington on June 4. Glogovsky, who was 23rd in the event at the State Finals in 2015, clocked in at 4:17.37, almost nine seconds faster than he ran at IU the previous year.
Glogovsky was the 1,600 champion at the Goshen Sectional in a time of 4:31.91 and also took second there in the 3,200 in a time of 9:59.49. He then finished second in the 1,600 at the Warsaw Regional in a time of 4:17.89. Glogovsky, who also won the 3,200 and was second in the 1,600 at the Northern Lakes Conference Meet, helped the Tiger track team win NLC, sectional and regional titles this Spring.
Glogovsky, who is bound to run at Lipscomb University in Nashville, competed in the Cross County State Finals as an individual last fall. He placed 37th overall in the race in a time of 16:05.3. Glogovsky was also second at the Culver Academies Regional, helping Warsaw win the team title, and placed 21st overall in the New Prairie Semistate. He also helped the Tigers reach the State Finals as a team in both 2012 and 2013.
9. Simply The Best – When it came to softball talent in the local area, Wawasee’s Meghan Fretz was the standard in 2016.
Fretz started her season by committing to Huntington University and while the Foresters were certainly already glad to have her talents, the Warrior junior gave them even more to be excited about.
Fretz split time between the pitching circle and first base for Wawasee and did both jobs admirably. Fretz had just four errors charged to her all season in 179 opportunities. She helped to turn nine double plays, had 22 assists, 153 putouts and finished with a .978 fielding percentage.
In the circle, Fretz pitched 99.2 innings, recorded 131 strikeouts and posted a ridiculous 0.73 ERA.
Fretz went 11-3 on the year, with losses only coming to ranked opponents in Bremen, Eastside and Fairfield. In the sectional championship loss to Fairfield, Fretz gave up no earned runs in seven innings of work.
At the plate the junior was just as polarizing. She hit .523 at the plate with a .517 on-base percentage, an .852 slugging percentage and an OPS of 1.369. Those numbers are really, really, really good.
With all of the statistical domination, it’s no wonder that Fretz and the Warriors posted 23 wins and won their second consecutive Northern Lakes Conference title.
8. Starting A Trend – Whitko High School is a unique place, many of its teams and players fly under the local sports radar given its proximity to Fort Wayne and sitting outside Columbia City and Warsaw. But while so much of the local media and fans get caught up in what’s happening near the center of the county, the Wildcats are quietly churning out some impressive individuals, as you’ll notice with these next few athletes.
One of those individuals in particular is Aly Reiff. The junior point guard for Brandon Bradley’s Lady Wildcats has been one of the regions most intriguing players over the past three years and she only continued to impress this past season.
After scoring 14.7 and 17.4 points per game, respectively, in her first two seasons for Whitko, Reiff jumped her total to 19.1 PPG in 2015-16. In fact, Reiff improved her stat line in every category during her junior campaign, except for blocks. Instead of 1.3 blocks per game, Reiff settled for 1.2 BPG, something that surely keeps her up at night.
Reiff certainly kept opponents up at night figuring out how to contain the Wildcat star. She finished with the following stat line on a per game basis, 5.5 assists, 5.8 rebounds and 3.8 steals. Again, all of which were improvements from her sophomore campaign.
In addition, Reiff helped lead the ‘Cats to a 7-2 record in the Three Rivers Conference and a 19-7 mark overall, up from 16 wins in 2014-15. The only bitter point in the season for Reiff or the Wildcats was its ending in which Whitko fell 70-65 in overtime of the sectional championship game.
Finally, Reiff had one of the season’s quietest commitments as she gave her verbal to Xavier University in Cincinnati.
7. Playing Under The Radar – Normally, one of the top scorers in boys basketball in the state of Indiana can’t walk down the street without someone making a mountain out of his every move. In South Whitley, one of the state’s top players has been flying relatively unnoticed under the basketball radar.
Whitko junior Nate Walpole finished seventh in the state in scoring (according to Max Preps) at 26.7 points per game. To put perspective on it, using MaxPreps’ figures, Walpole would rank 77th NATIONALLY in scoring. Wildcats head coach Roger Fleetwood knows scoring, having coached NBA star Lou Williams in Georgia, but that’s some impressive company.
Walpole, while leading Whitko in scoring, did so much more for a program that won just one game two years ago. The Wildcats finished with 14 wins this past season. Serving much like an NBA point guard, Walpole scored in bunches, but also led the team in assists, three-pointers made, steals, and was second in defensive rebounds.
6. Soaring To New Heights – Another of the ‘quietly building a legacy’ athletes at Whitko, junior Kaitlyn Reed has vividly made her name in two sports.
As a volleyball stud, Reed was the No. 1 option for a Wildcat team that won 20 matches. Reed smashed home 418 kills last season at a 41 percent kill clip with defenses almost selling out to protect against her. Reed also led the team in digs, blocks and aces as colleges have begun to take notice.
On the track, Reed was Whitko’s top sprinter this season and added a Three Rivers Conference title to her mantle in the 100-meter dash. In the field, Reed was a quality long jumper, but was defined by her high-jumping prowess. Winning the TRC title, Reed came back to claim a sectional title at 5-5, which tied Miranda Terrell for the Whitko program record.
Reed qualified for state in high jump with a third-place jump at the Kokomo Regional, then placed fifth in the state finals with a 5-5 jump. She finished ninth in high jump at the 2015 state finals.
Honorable Mention Individuals: Sam Alexander, Jordan Anderson, Ross Armey, Garrett Elder, Tanner Gaff, Taytum Hargrave, Kyle Hatch, Mikala Mawhorter, Paige Miller, Brenna Morgan, Lexi O’Connell, Tristin Ponsler, Gage Waddle