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BOURBON No matter how hard second-ranked Tri-County fought to make a comeback stick after trailing by double-digits early Saturday morning, Gary 21st Century Charter always had an answer in a 69-57 loss in the Class A Triton Regional semifinals. Tri-County (23-3) erased a 14-point first half deficit to take the lead on four different occasions in the second half, only see 21st Century quickly snatch the lead right back in a physical game.

GARY Raven Osborne has an amazing story to tell. The 18-year-old high school senior at 21st Century Charter School in Gary will earn a bachelor's degree in sociology with a minor in early childhood education from Purdue University Northwest on May 5, the same month she will earn a high school diploma from the charter school. Osborne said it was tough going to high school and taking college classes. There were times when she wanted to quit, but her mother, Hazel Osborne, constantly encouraged her and told her she could do it.

Rodney Williams, the only boys basketball coach 21st Century has known, took the job in 2008 because it was time to get warm.

Williams was a football coach by trade. "It was cold outside," he said. "I wanted to move inside." Williams, the Post-Tribune 2016-17 Boys Basketball Coach of the Year, isn't going back to his roots.

He has, in his words, "never had more fun coaching" than he has in basketball.

Joy is something all Indiana boys basketball teams still playing today on Semistate Saturday have.

It's in the bus ride, the locker room and out on the court.

There are 16 teams in the four classes who are 32 minutes away from advancing to next Saturday's state championships at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

How could this experience not be a ton of fun?

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundations Early College High School Initiative has supported the creation or redesign of nearly 300 schools that serve more than 80,000 students in 31 states and the District of Columbia since 2002. Even more schools and districts have taken on this early college high school design challenge outside the auspices of the Gates Foundation. The exact design of these schools varies based on partnerships between schools and local colleges, but the foundational concept is that students can graduate from high school with a college credential as well.

GARY Core'Von Lott was playing basketball inside the gym at 21st Century a couple of summers ago when his phone rang. It was his mother, who told him he had been accepted as a student into the Gary charter school. Lott was working out at the time with Eugene German, the prolific scorer who graduated last June and is now starring at Northern Illinois.

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