2024 Ripley County Basketball Hall of Fame Induction Class Announced

The inductees will be recognized Saturday, January 6 at Batesville High School during the Boys Ripley Co. Tournament.

(Ripley County, Ind.) - Six new members will be inducted into the Ripley County Basketball Hall of Fame at the start of the New Year. 

The Class of 2024 includes Paul Bess, Brad Borgman, Marsha Lynee Fields, Jason Laudick, Alan Meyer, and Mark Riehle. 

The new induction class will be recognized on Saturday, January 6 at Batesville High School during the in-between game ceremonies of the Ripley County Boys Basketball Tournament consolation and championship games.

A formal induction dinner for our six new members will be held in April. 

Bios for the six inductees can be read below. The bios were written by Rob Lafary. 

 

Paul Bess, South Ripley, Class of 1970

Several can say they played at top teams at just one school. Paul Bess can say he played for two. Bess’s basketball career started at Holton High School, playing two years of varsity basketball for head coach Bill White where he starred alongside names such as Rick Ebinger, Kelvin Comer and Dan Meisberger. In 1969, Bess and company led the Warhorses to one of their most successful campaigns, only losing four games that year which included a sectional loss to eventual regional champion Jac-Cen-Del. It would be the final season for Holton basketball and force Bess and his buddies with a difficult decision.

Bess, Comer and Meisberger would all decide to pledge their new allegiance to South Ripley High School and in doing so, forever changed the boys basketball program at the school. Those three joined Raider star Chris Smith and head coach Dale Ricketts for the 1969-1970 season, taking the town of Versailles for an absolute ride as the green and white finished with a 25-1 overall record, an unbeaten regular season and four different championships as Ripley finished as county and conference champions, sectional champions and regional champions. South Ripley fell to Crispus Attucks in the opening round of the semi-state at Hinkle Fieldhouse. The 25-1 record still stands as a program-best and most wins in school history while the regional is just one of two, the other coming 11 years later in 1981. Bess would be very much a part of that, earning All-ORVC, All-County, All-Sectional and All-Regional honors alongside Smith and Comer. He would also be the only member of that team selected to the All-Semi-State Tournament Team.

Bess also ended that year selected as an All-State member by All-American Report Magazine. In his lone year at South Ripley, he would finish with an average of 11.9 points per game and scored a career-high 23 points against North Decatur in the afternoon game of the 1970 Regional. Despite his career ending the next weekend against Attucks, he would score 19 points in that game to lead the Raiders, forever cementing his place as one the school’s most prolific players despite just one year donning SR colors.

Perhaps his biggest accomplishment at South Ripley was meeting his future wife and forever cheerleader Libby Williams. After graduation, Paul attended Marian University and then embarked on a life with Libby in Florida that saw him become a brick mason and owner of Bess Masonry. He would later become a state-licensed Plans Examiner and Building Inspector. The couple has two daughters -Taryn and Shayna- and Paul’s love for basketball trickled down to them and other youth in Florida as he would spend several years coaching at the youth level before retiring from a successful career in 2004.

 

Brad Borgman, Jac-Cen-Del, Class of 1999

A four-year starter at Jac-Cen-Del High School, Brad Borgman spent the end of the 1990’s dazzling fans all across the state of Indiana and leading the Eagles to a 61-25 record in that time. Scoring 242 points in his first year, the most by a freshman in Jac-Cen-Del history, was just the beginning. When it was all said and done for Borgman, his scoring prowess and knack for being a fierce competitor ultimately solidified him a place as one the greatest Eagles of all-time.

Leading Jac-Cen-Del to three ORVC Championships and a Ripley County Tournament title in 1999, Borgman would finish his career as the school’s all-time leading scorer, totaling 1711 points, a record that still stands today as does his marks for field goals and three-pointers made. He was a four-time All-ORVC member, three-time All-Sectional pick, two-time Conference MVP and two-time member to the All-County Tournament Team, one of which was an MVP selection in 1999. In addition to numerous team awards which included Team MVP, Leading Rebounder, Free Throw Award and Academic Eagle Award, Borgman’s abilities were recognized at the state level beginning his junior year. He would be an honorable mention All-State selection and was a nominee for the Indiana Junior All-Star Team in 1998 which fueled his desire even more a year later. There was no such thing as honorable mention his senior year. Scoring 529 points that year alone, Borgman made his presence felt and was named to the Indiana All-Star Team that faced Kentucky in the annual All-Star Series. He earned First Team All-State from Hoosier Basketball Magazine, was a North/South All-Star selection and was a featured All-Star by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association. His final local recognition would be participating in the 40 and 8 All-Star Game, being named MVP as part of the Ripley County team.

Borgman would move on the following year to NCAA Division I Eastern Kentucky on a basketball scholarship before transferring to the University of Indianapolis for his sophomore and junior seasons. He would be the team’s second leading scorer during his sophomore year and several times was named the Great Lakes Valley Conference Player of the Week. Borgman would finish his collegiate career at Indiana Southeast and helped lead the Grenadiers to a conference championship and berth in the NAIA National Tournament where he would earn NAIA Regional MVP honors. Brad scored over 1000 points during his time in college basketball.

Borgman now resides in Evergreen, Colorado with his wife Sarah, daughter Ella and twin boys Tate and Wyatt. He currently serves as the Director of Product Sales at The Motz Group. Brad now joins his dad Tom in the Ripley County Basketball Hall of Fame.

 

Marsha Lynee Fields, Jac-Cen-Del, Class of 1976

In a time when girls basketball was in its infancy as an IHSAA-sanctioned sport, Jac-Cen-Del became a household name and the early days of Lady Eagle basketball saw Marsha Fields as a spark plug for their success. As a member of the program’s first two basketball teams, she would total an overall win-loss record of 27-1.

Playing a nine-game season in 1975, Jac-Cen-Del went 9-0 and won the Lawrenceburg Invitational after Fields averaged 11.5 points and 8 rebounds per game in the tournament. One year later, she and the rest of the Lady Eagle roster embarked on an unbeaten 12-0 regular season, captured an ORVC title, won the inaugural Ripley County Girls Basketball Tournament and competed in the first-ever IHSAA Girls Basketball State Tournament. Not only did the Osgood crew compete, but they had success. Jac-Cen-Del defeated Brookville in the sectional championship and went on to defeat Columbus North and Aurora to capture the regional before heading to the semi-state and defeating Vincennes Lincoln in the opening round. The Lady Eagles fell that night by three points to Bloomfield but Marsha and her team’s accolades set a precedent for success that continues today inside the program. Two years later, Jac-Cen-Del would reach the IHSAA State Championship Game.

Marsha was selected to the All-Sectional, All-Regional and All-Semi-State Teams in 1976 and finished her senior season averaging 13 points and eight rebounds per game. She was known as a lights out shooter and provided an all-around play that made her a tremendous competitor and a nightmare for opposing teams to prepare for. As a co-captain of the team, she was an inspiration to her team and many of her teammates can fondly recall her efforts on the basketball court. Her high school career concluded with an appearance in the 40 and 8 All-Star Game, solidifying her status as a true pioneer in Indiana high school girls basketball.

Fields was also a four-year starter for the Jac-Cen-Del volleyball team and was Team MVP in 1976. She currently resides in Osgood and has served as District Manager of Arby’s in Cincinnati.

 

Jason Laudick, Batesville, Class of 1989

Batesville basketball got a tremendous boost in the late 1980’s and much of that had to do with the play of Jason Laudick. By the end of his career, the Bulldogs were once again a force to be reckoned with and making a run in the state tournament.

By his junior season, Laudick had turned into a go-to player on the offensive end and the Bulldogs were better because of it. Jason totaled 660 points during his career, which currently ranks 30th in program history and the two-time All-EIAC selection was also a two-time All-Sectional pick, culminating in a senior season that saw him lead Batesville to its first sectional title in six years, defeating county rivals Jac-Cen-Del and South Ripley to win the crown. Batesville would slide past Rising Sun the next weekend in the regional semifinal but a high-scoring evening affair in the championship game that night saw Connersville pull away for a win, despite the best efforts of Laudick.

It was that Connersville game that saw Laudick set a school record, drilling nine 3-pointers in an 83-72 loss which set the mark for 3-Pointers Made in a Game. For his efforts in both the day and night, he was named an All-Regional member and he would wrap up his Batesville days as the Team MVP in 1989, finishing out his days in blue and white with a career-high scoring mark of 40 points. Jason was also selected as a Top 100 senior that same year and will be remembered as one of the all-time greats in Bulldog history.

Jason attended Southwestern College on a basketball scholarship before wrapping up his collegiate days as a student at Ball State University. He is now a property manager and resides in Batesville with his wife Julie. The two have a daughter, Grace, and a son, Hunter.

 

Alan Meyer, Batesville, Class of 1994

Four-straight sectional titles for Batesville boys basketball started in 1994 and Alan Meyer was a catalyst for such a dynasty, becoming an instrumental figure for that Bulldogs including that 1994 season when he was named EIAC MVP, All-County, All-Sectional and All-Regional.

Meyer scored 404 points and averaged 16.2 points per game during a senior season that saw Batesville march all the way to the semi-state as part of the single-class state tournament. The Bulldogs beat Jac-Cen-Del in the sectional championship and then beat New Castle and host Connersville to capture the regional title. Alan scored 31 points in the New Castle game, just one less than his career-high of 32 points which was scored earlier that year against Greensburg. Batesville fell the following weekend to Ben Davis in the first game of the semi-state but not before Meyer would win the Semi-State Dunk Contest, an annual affair in the latter days of single-class competition. His senior year would finish with a nod as a Hoosier Basketball Coaches All-Star, All-State Honorable Mention selection and leading the state in field goal percentage.

Alan’s 624 career points ranks him 37th on the boys basketball scoring list at Batesville. He was also an All-EIAC selection his junior season in 1993 and scored 218 points that year while shooting nearly 60 percent from the floor. He had a then career-high of 19 points against Triton Central. Away from basketball, Meyer was EIAC and Team MVP his senior year on the baseball team and was a member of the Indiana North/South All-Star Game, participating for the south. He was an All-Conference football selection in the fall and set a school record for touchdown receptions in a season with 7.

Meyer would go on to attend both Indiana State University and Wabash College. He and his wife Lana currently live in Batesville where he works as a Tooling Specialist with Hill-Rom. He has two stepsons, Chance and Justin.

 

Mark Riehle, Sunman, Class of 1961

Sunman had to deal with a stellar Versailles team in 1959 and a historic New Marion team in 1961 as part of two sectional runner-up finishes but Mark Riehle certainly was one tough customer when it came to playing against the Tigers. As a three-year varsity letter winner, he will be forever remembered as one of the school’s biggest superstars with the greatest hustle and the biggest desire.

Riehle scored 272 points, averaged 11.8 points per game and had a career-high 22 points against Burney as part of a senior season that saw Sunman finish 18-5 and finish runner-up to New Marion in the sectional tournament where he was placed on the All-Sectional Honorable Mention list. He would be selected to the All-Conference Team that year and a year prior in 1960, racking up 130 points during his junior campaign that saw him become an instrumental part of a roster that finished with an overall record of 12-9. He made his varsity debut during his sophomore season, scoring 161 points and averaging nearly eight points per game. Sunman finished 37-20 during Riehle’s time in the varsity ranks and he would finish with 563 career points.

Mark also earned three varsity letters in baseball and one in track and field. Following graduation, he would stay in the area as a construction roofer and farmer and also enlist in the United States Air Force Reserves. His love of basketball never went away. Riehle coached basketball for grades five through eight at St. Nicholas Elementary School for 15 years, getting the opportunity to coach all four of his sons in the process and providing a memorable experience for all of his players during that span.

Riehle and his wife Carlene were married in 1965 and had seven children -sons Eric, Chris, Michael and Paul and daughters Lori, Beth and Rene.

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