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6 Northrop seniors sign on to college plans

By Eric Dutkiewicz, 02/28/19, 8:15PM EST


FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Six Northrop High School seniors signed on to continue their athletic careers at the college level.

Sydney Curry, Dylan Kirkwood, Mikel Fischer, Jo’Deci Irby, James Jones and Conner Bayne were all celebrated during a ceremony Wednesday at the school.

Curry signed his national letter of intent to play men’s basketball at Miami University, an NCAA Division I team in Oxford, Ohio. Curry averaged 18.6 points and 12.4 rebounds during the regular season, and has led the Bruins to a share of the Summit Athletic Conference championship and a first round sectional victory over Carroll. He plans to study physical therapy.

Kirkwood signed with the women’s track program at Purdue University Fort Wayne. Kirkwood, a sprinter and hurdler, has won 3 SAC titles, 4 sectional titles, 4 regional titles. She has also been named All-State four times and was a USATF Junior Olympic national qualifier. She plans to study physical therapy.

Swimmer Mikel Fischer will join the upstart men’s swimming program at Bethel College, an NAIA school in Mishawaka, Ind. Fischer lettered all four seasons, and was captain of the team this past season. He primarily competes in the 200-meter individual medley and the 100-meter breaststroke.  He plans to study elementary education.

Irby is excited to continue her track career at Taylor University, an NAIA program in Upland, Ind. Irby’s accomplishments at Northrop include 5 sectional titles, 3 regional titles, All-Conference honors 5 times and All-State honors twice. She also is a 3-time USATF Junior Olympic national qualifier. She is interested in studying something in the medical field.

James Jones will play college football at the University of Saint Francis. Jones played both ways for the Bruins, but says he will primarily play defense-only at USF. He racked up 41 tackles, 5 sacks, 2 forced fumbles and 1 fumble recovery this past season, earning honorable mention All-SAC honors and the team’s Most Outstanding Defensive Lineman Award.

Bayne signed with the men’s cross country and track & field teams at Purdue Fort Wayne. With a personal best of 16:16 in the 5,000-meter cross country race, he was All-SAC, All-Sectional, All-Regional, All-Semi-State and a 2-time individual qualifier for the Bruins. In track, he qualified for regionals in the 1600-meter run and was on 3200-meter relay team that twice finished 3rd at the state meet.

Northrop is one of 25 area high schools that partner with Parkview Sports Medicine for athletic training, nutrition, athletic rehabilitation and orthopedic services for Bruin athletes.