Rob Hunt column: Local transfer portal

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Rob Hunt, The Herald Bulletin, Anderson, Ind.
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Mar. 25—With the NBA trade deadline happening this week and Adrian Wojnarowski dropping bombs about players changing hometowns, I was reminded of a handful of recent transfers in the northern part of Madison County that felt a little like a three-team trade of sorts.

First, there is no problem with students transferring from one school to another. It has become a regular occurrence, and if it puts the kid in a better situation for them, then it works out for everyone. I'm not interested in any of the gossip or innuendo that sometimes accompanies these moves.

But let's have some fun looking at this group of talented kids who swapped schools.

Chance Martin moves from Elwood to Alexandria after an impressive freshman season under center for the Panthers. He starts his sophomore campaign at QB for the Tigers, but he is sidelined by an injury and an impressive run by freshman Gabe McGuire. Martin is also an athletic addition to a young Alex basketball team and should help coach Marty Carroll regroup after this season.

After her sophomore season, Tigers softball star Mackenzie Swango transfers to Frankton where she has to sit out a year, one that was canceled anyway due to COVID-19. She is a catcher and a strong left-handed bat for the Eagles lineup and went 5-for-5 with an RBI in her debut this week.

Frankton then sends Emma Smith to Alexandria in the middle of this school year. Smith will add depth at the setter position for the volleyball team and is a potent bat in the Tigers' lineup. Coincidentally enough, Smith plays catcher and will fill the void left by Swango's departure.

A pair of Frankton athletes also headed to Elwood. Both Lauren Hughes and Jaylen Lovett transferred prior to this school year as seniors. Hughes was a dynamite defensive player for the Elwood volleyball team, competed for the swim team and is now starting in the outfield for the softball squad. Lovett is a top-of-the-order type hitter with speed who can also cover ground defensively.

Certainly, this was not a trade like the pros where expiring contracts and salary cap considerations sometimes outweigh the swaps of talent.

These are kids who decided, along with their families, to find a better fit for whatever reason.

And if anyone looks at this and thinks Frankton got a little shortchanged here, I suggest they go watch Swango play.

Who wins this "trade?"

All three schools will benefit from the additions both on the fields and in the classrooms.

And, as long as the kids are where they need to be, that's all that matters anyway.

Contact Rob Hunt at rob.hunt@heraldbulletin.com or 765-640-4886.