Edinburgh Community High School has hosted a boys basketball sectional every year dating back to the 2005 postseason.

No other Johnson County program can come close to making such a claim.

With a better selection of gymnasiums from which to choose among the larger high schools, those in Class 4A typically attempt to implement some sort of rotational system.

“What we try to do is give everyone a chance to host it,” Center Grove athletics director Jon Zwitt said.

“When the athletic directors get together and have a meeting, we look at the five sports (volleyball, girls/boys basketball, baseball and softball) and see who can host and when.

“With basketball, we look at gym capacity first. You never want to push people away.”

Franklin is on the outside looking in.

With a seating capacity of only 2,700, Franklin’s gym accommodates far fewer spectators than the other five programs in Sectional 13: Center Grove (5,500), Martinsville (5,500), Whiteland (4,649), Greenwood (4,064) and Franklin Central (4,000).

The school must play to its strengths, according to athletics director John Regas.

By the time this school year is over, the Grizzly Cubs will have hosted sectionals in girls soccer, girls and boys cross-country, girls and boys swimming, baseball and girls and boys track and field.

“It is potentially possible for us to host a boys basketball sectional,” Regas said. “But we host a lot, and we have the ability to host a lot.”

Franklin, a yearly sectional destination for boys basketball teams during previous generations, last hosted one in 1998, the first season under the current multi-class system.

Vandivier Gymnasium, which seats 4,600 and is now the middle school gymnasium, hosted its final postseason game that season when Franklin lost to Sullivan in a Class 4A regional 71-69.

Franklin is approaching the two-decade mark of having not hosted a boys basketball sectional. Regas has looked into the possibility of breaking the dry spell.

After Martinsville served as host of the 2016 sectional, Regas sought and received the three-night attendance numbers from Martinsville athletics director Don Lipps.

Based on that data, Franklin seemed equipped to host first-round games on a Tuesday night and the title matchup on Saturday. However, it’s the Friday evening semifinal doubleheader where Franklin’s gym might fall short.

One possible solution is to bring in auxiliary bleachers, though nothing definite has been planned.

Edinburgh’s 2,080-seat octagon is commonly viewed as the best venue in Class A’s Sectional 59, which for the past two years has included Arlington, Central Christian, Greenwood Christian Academy, Lutheran and Morristown.

“Every two years where the IHSAA realigns, the schools we’re in a sectional with decide who’s going to host,” Edinburgh athletics director David Walden said. “Bigger schools might rotate the sectional, but in Class A the facilities aren’t always good enough to do that.”

Walden points out that under the current structure, Lutheran typically requests to host the volleyball sectional. Morristown opts for girls basketball and baseball, while Edinburgh hosts boys basketball and softball sectionals.

By the numbers

Local boys basketball sectional hosts dating back to the 1990-91 season:

Center Grove: 6 (1996, 2004, 2009, 2012-14)

Edinburgh: 15 (2000, 2001, 2005-17)

Franklin: 3 (1992, 1995, 1998)

Greenwood: 4 (1993, 1997, 2002, 2010)

Greenwood Christian Academy: none

Indian Creek: 2 (2001, 2008)

Whiteland: 6 (1991, 1994, 1999, 2005-06, 2015)

Author photo
Mike Beas is a sports writer for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at mbeas@dailyjournal.net.