By Mike Deak
WARSAW – By now, everyone is aware that the 2020-21 school year was one of the toughest to navigate, concentrate, and master. The difficulties that were presented to not only classroom (or virtual) performance, but hours later on the athletic platforms will make for a year no one will soon forget.
For some, the challenges presented were beyond comprehension. Immediately, most will point to the four shutdowns for the NorthWood girls basketball team, or a pair for the Wawasee boys basketball program. Yet the two were on the fringes of tournament championships. For teams like Concord football, their season was abruptly ended by shutdowns, and a week later Goshen and Mishawaka were playing each other in a sectional, the Cavemen also playing for a Northern Lakes Conference title at the same time because of a quirk in the schedule to which the season had presented itself.
All to be said, teams were super happy to be playing but still faced with a series of challenges unlike any other year in recent memory. Covering the 2020-21 season was also unlike anything we have done, but happy to have had the opportunity.
Beginning today and stretching out for two weeks, the IFN Sports staff will salute the Top 10 teams and athletes for the 2020-21 season. We begin today with teams 10 and 9, and work our way to No. 1 by the end of the week, two teams released each day this week, and the athletes next week, culminating with our Athlete of the Year on June 25.
Kick back and relive some of the teams that were able to make 2020-21 a historically memorable year.