News From Terre Haute, Indiana

College

February 25, 2011

ISU's Johnson, a former Indiana All-Star in basketball, one of top throwers in NCAA

TERRE HAUTE — As a senior at Lawrence North High School three years ago, 6-foot-2 Felisha Johnson averaged 15.9 points per game and earned selection to the Indiana All-Stars girls basketball team.

Johnson made a few basketball-related trips to Terre Haute in her younger days, but little did she know that she would make a name for herself nationally from our fine city.

You see, Johnson has given up basketball, although some fans might say she could help coach Teri Moren and the current ISU women’s squad with her inside presence.

These days, however, Johnson is focusing her attention on heaving heavy objects for the ISU women’s track and field team.

And she’s doing a good job of it.

After redshirting in 2009 and enjoying a reasonably successful 2010, Johnson set the school record in the women’s 20-pound weight throw (74 feet, 21⁄2 inches Feb. 5 in the DePauw Tiger Invitational at Greencastle) and leaped to the No. 2 ranking in the nation as a sophomore this winter.

“She’s really good now,” ISU throws coach Adam Judge emphasized during practice Wednesday at the ISU Arena. “She’s one of the top throwers in the country. She’s one of the top throwers in the world, actually. She’s made big strides since last year. She opened up [the indoor season] with an 8-foot PR [personal record]… Developmentally, she’s real young. She’s got a lot of technical work she can still fix.”

“Felisha is a tremendous athlete,” ISU women’s track coach Angie Martin said. “She’s really come a long way in the indoor weight throw. Coach Judge has done a phenomenal job with her. She just comes to practice and works really hard. She works really, really hard in the weightroom… It’ll be fun to see where the rest of the season takes her.”

Johnson will get a big test Saturday (weight throw) and Sunday (shot put) when she competes in the 2011 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Indoor Track & Field Championships on the campus of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Asked what a reasonable goal would be for Johnson in the weight thr ow this weekend, Judge replied “77 [feet]” while Johnson was saying 74 at the same time. Despite her modesty, Judge nodded his head up and down to indicate that his prediction is attainable.

“I just want to do well, get points for the team mostly, because our goal as a whole is to win conference as a team,” Johnson told me, “and winning [individually] wouldn’t hurt.”

“I don’t want to put too much pressure on her,” Martin said on that subject. “She’s been throwing really well in meets when she’s been confident in herself and relaxed. That’s our goal for the week — for her to be that way in the meet — and hopefully things will kinda take care of themselves.”

Martin said the MVC is very deep in the women’s weight throw. “We have four of the top nine in the nation,” the Sycamores’ coach noted.

One of the Valley’s other top performers in that event is ISU senior Kelsey Hanley, whose 2010 best throw of 68-91⁄4 ranks second in school history. Hanley’s best this year is 66-81⁄2.

Johnson also does well in the indoor shot put, although she’s not quite as dominant. Her best heave of 50 feet, 93⁄4 inches ranks No. 2 on ISU’s all-time list, trailing the school record of 55-11⁄2 set by Terre Haute’s own Christy Barrett (now Christy Sherman) in 1991.

“She’s getting there,” Martin said of Johnson’s possible rise to Christy Barrett-Sherman status. “She makes progress every year. I mean, she’s only a sophomore, so she’s got two more years.”

“It’s pretty cool,” Johnson said of being mentioned in the same breath with the ISU legend. “She’s really nice. She always tries to help me out… Hopefully, [the school record] will happen.”

“Felisha’s pretty solid in her technique,” Judge assessed, “but she’s really fast and she’s just a very, very hard worker … very dedicated.”

In the weightroom, Johnson’s max lifts in the bench press (275 pounds), squat (450 pounds) and standing military press (225 pounds) would make most men proud. Judge said she’s flipped a 600-pound tire three times in seven seconds, describing her as “farm strong.”

“She comes in every week and watches film, a couple times a week sometimes,” Judge added. “Every throw she takes in practice is 100-percent [effort].”

Johnson credits a change in her preseason training routine as one reason for her climb up the national throwing charts.

“We did more sprinting and a lot more lifting,” she explained. “So that’s made a big difference.”

A sports management major, Johnson easily could have gone elsewhere for college, especially for basketball, in 2009. Fortunately, she chose Indiana State — for a few different reasons.

“The throwers were a nice, close group,” she said, recalling a visit to ISU she made during the 2009 high school track season. “I really liked that. The coaches were really nice too.”

Being located within 100 miles of Indianapolis also was a plus. “My parents can come see me throw for the close meets,” she mentioned.

And if she keeps working hard, maybe they can watch her compete for an NCAA championship in the not-too-distant future.

David Hughes can be reached by phone at 1-800-783-8742, Option 4, or at (812) 231-4224; by e-mail at david.hughes@tribstar.com; or by fax at (812) 231-4321.

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
College
  • ISU football picked last in MVFC

    Indiana State’s football team found itself in familiar, if depressing, territory when the Missouri Valley Football Conference preseason poll was released on Tuesday.

    July 29, 2014

  • Degano2.jpg Bullpen mates: Three relievers coming on strong down stretch for Rex

    The Terre Haute Rex pitching staff ranks fifth among the 12 teams in the Prospect League in earned-run average this season and first in the league with only four home runs allowed all summer. But the Rex pitchers might be the best in the league the past two weeks as the team has had two shutouts and two games with one run allowed in the past week.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • Prettyman wants ISU to be prepared for potential NCAA changes

    Against a rising tide of media, public and institutional sentiment that would suggest otherwise, Indiana State Director of Athletics Ron Prettyman believes that the current model of college athletics still works.

    July 26, 2014

  • ISU basketball trio earn national academic honors

    A trio of Indiana State basketball student-athletes have been named to the 2013-14 National Association of Basketball Coaches Honors Court as announced by the national organization. Honored from Indiana State were Lucas Eitel, Justin Gant and Jake Kitchell.

    July 23, 2014

  • Metro roundup: Post 346 rallies past Rockville

    Wayne Newton Post 346 scored a run in the sixth and two in the seventh to get past Rockville 6-3 in an American Legion baseball regional at Terre Haute North on Wednesday.

    July 23, 2014

  • Truebytower.jpg Memorable experience in Morocco for ISU soccer team could help team's growth

    Coming off the best season in its history, the Indiana State women’s soccer team figures to have the experience to do even better in the upcoming fall season.
    Or maybe that’s #TheExperience.

    July 23, 2014 11 Photos

  • Metro: Former Miss Softball joins Purdue staff

    Terre Haute North graduate Megan Ciolli Bartlett, the state’s 2001 Miss Softball and a two-time All-American at Notre Dame, is joining the Purdue coaching staff.

    July 21, 2014

  • Metro: ISU graduate Johnson sixth in shot at Monaco

    Indiana State graduate Felisha Johnson competed in her first International Association of Athletics Federations Diamond League track and field meeting Friday, placing sixth in a shot put competition that featured six of the top seven throwers in the world for 2014.

    July 18, 2014

  • ReedUK.jpg A.J. Reed makes it 5 for 5 in college baseball awards with Golden Spikes Award

    When it came down to it, college baseball’s electors agreed that there was no award Terre Haute’s A.J. Reed didn’t deserve for his remarkable 2014 season at Kentucky.
    Reed was selected Thursday as the 2014 Golden Spikes Award winner, given annually to the top amateur player in the nation by USA Baseball, making Reed a unanimous pick as the national player of the year.

    July 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • MVC to shift women's basketball tournament to Moline, Ill.

    The Missouri Valley Conference Women’s Basketball Tournament will move 90 miles farther from Terre Haute beginning in 2016, the league announced Thursday.

    July 17, 2014

  • Metro: ISU-IU football game to be on ESPNEWS

    Indiana University announced Wednesday that the season opening game between Indiana State and IU will be played at noon on Sept. 30.

    July 16, 2014

  • Riley 10s go 4-1, place second in state tourney

    Riley’s 10-and-under all-star team finished as runner-up over the weekend at the Cal Ripken baseball Central Indiana tournament.

    July 14, 2014

  • Odum heads for Vegas with Kings summer team

    Terre Haute native Jake Odum scored three points in the Indiana Pacers’ 84-74 victory on Thursday over the Miami Heat in the Orlando Summer League.

    July 11, 2014

  • odum.jpg Odum has 5 points for Pacers in summer play

    Former Indiana State standout Jake Odum contributed five points, three assists and a steal in 15 minutes on the court Wednesday for the Indiana Pacers summer league team.

    July 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • MVC Tournament staying in St. Louis until 2018

    Missouri Valley Conference men's tournament staying in St. Louis until 2018.

    July 9, 2014

  • mundy.jpg College report: Former Patriot runner Mundy is ‘proud to be a Hoosier’

    After redshirting the indoor and outdoor track and field seasons this year, Chanli Mundy was eager to do one thing recently as she prepared to compete in the USATF Junior Outdoor Track and Field Championships at Eugene, Oregon. “The biggest thing I’m looking forward to is being able to wear an IU uniform,” she said last week prior to making her cross-country trip.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Odum scores 2 points off bench for Pacers

    Three of the top picks in last month’s draft are adjusting to NBA at different speeds at the Orlando Pro Summer League.

    July 7, 2014

  • Terre Haute's A.J. Reed joins Manziel as an SEC Athlete of Year

    University of Kentucky baseball star A.J. Reed of Terre Haute and Florida softball standout Hannah Rogers have been named 2013-14 Roy F. Kramer Southeastern Conference Male and Female Athletes of the Year, according to a voting by the league’s athletics directors.
    “A.J. and Hannah are true examples of outstanding student-athletes,” SEC commissioner Mike Slive said Tuesday. “They have competed at the highest level of collegiate athletics, and through their hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence, have been successful in their endeavors. They are fine representatives of their universities and this conference.”

    July 1, 2014

  • SPT063014 loyd .jpg A new era: ‘Bittersweet day’ as Loyd takes over for ailing Shaw as Rose-Hulman men’s basketball coach

    Rose-Hulman President James Conwell couldn’t have been more accurate Monday afternoon when he called it “a bittersweet day” for his school.

    June 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • Reed adds two-way award to collection

    Seeking to become the third unanimous national Player of the Year in Southeastern Conference history, Terre Haute’s A.J. Reed has been named winner of the 2014 John Olerud Award, given annually to the nation’s top two-way player, according to an announcement Friday from the College Baseball Hall of Fame.

    June 27, 2014

  • Metro: ISU’s Wise starts out well in USATF championships

    Indiana State sprinter Katie Wise advanced to the semifinals of the women’s 100 meters as she ran 11.42 seconds in the opening heat of the event Thursday evening at the USA Track & Field Outdoor Championships.

    June 27, 2014

  • SPT021914ISUMBB odum.jpg ISU's Odum talks about agreeing to play for Pacers' summer-league team

    No team selected him in the two-round NBA draft Thursday night, but Terre Haute native and four-year Indiana State basketball standout Jake Odum agreed Friday to play for the Indiana Pacers’ summer-league squad next month.

    June 27, 2014 1 Photo 4 Stories

  • SPT 030914 ODUM FILE.jpg Steady success: ISU continued to climb ladder with one of its best overall seasons ever

    First of all, if you’re an Indiana State fan, stand up and applaud. The Sycamores collectively went where only one Sycamore athletic department went before in 2013-14. ISU finished second in the Missouri Valley Conference All-Sports Trophy standings. ISU recorded a score of 3.538, its highest in school history.

    June 25, 2014 6 Photos

  • Metro roundup: Odum to work out with Lakers

    Terre Haute native and former Indiana State guard Jake Odum will have two more workouts before next Thursday’s NBA Draft. Odum will work out with the Los Angeles Lakers today. Odum will have a second workout with the Orlando Magic next week before the draft.

    June 20, 2014 1 Story

  • Terre Haute’s Reed earns 4th national honor

    Recent University of Kentucky standout A.J. Reed has been named National Player of the Year and first-team All-America, according to an announcement made Wednesday afternoon by the American Baseball Coaches Association.

    June 18, 2014

  • NCAA Championships At_Pear.jpg Swift breaks ISU hurdles record, takes fourth place at NCAAs

    Senior Greggmar Swift broke the school record in the 110 meter hurdles, as Indiana State picked up two All-Americans in the final day of the 2014 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Swift’s five points in the event gave the men’s team five points for the meet and a 44th place finish in the nation. The women got 3 points from Mary Theisen in the shot put to place 51st in the nation.

    June 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • A.J. Reed chosen as 28th Dick Howser Trophy recipient

    University of Kentucky junior pitcher/first baseman A.J. Reed, who enjoyed possibly the greatest individual season in UK history in 2014, is the 28th recipient of the Dick Howser Trophy, presented by Easton Foundations, as college baseball’s Player of the Year.
    The presentation was made Saturday during a national news conference at TD Ameritrade Park, site of the 2014 College World Series.
     

    June 14, 2014

  • SPT061214 ISUMBB parker.jpg New ISU coach Parker makes first impression

    Indiana State assistant coach Terry Parker hasn’t had too much time to make a first impression.
    Officially hired in late April, but identified as Dave Ragland’s replacement on Greg Lansing’s staff long before that, there haven’t been many team activities for Parker to take part in since he joined ISU’s staff from Utah Valley.

    June 13, 2014 2 Photos

  • Greggmar Swift advances to NCAA hurdles final

    Greggmar Swift advanced to the finals of the 110-meter hurdles to highlight Indiana State’s performances during day two of the NCAA Outdoor Championships at Hayward Field.

    June 13, 2014

  • SPT 112313 NCAA 01MASCARI.jpg Terre Haute's Mascari earns All-American finish in 10,000 meters

    Indiana State sophomore John Mascari finished 11th in the NCAA Championships in the 10,000-meter run Wednesday night at historic Hayward Field.

    June 12, 2014 2 Photos

Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo 3 People Killed, Deputies Wounded in NC Shootout Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Raw: 16 Killed in Gaza Market Strike Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train Obama: 'Blood of Africa Runs Through My Veins' 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Raw: Smoke, Explosions Fill Gaza Skyline Today in History for July 31st Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit
NDN Video
Famous Internet Cats Help Big Cause With Viral Video Snoop Dogg Narrating Animal Footage Is Perfect Tigers Acquire David Price - @TheBuzzeronFOX Russell Brand Slams Sean Hannity Over Gaza Conflict Segment Chapter Two: Composing for a film in retirement Woman's Dive Goes Terribly Wrong Brian Williams Reports on Daughter Allison Williams' 'Peter Pan' Casting News Did Jimmy Fallon Look Up Heidi Klum's Dress? What Drama? Miranda Kerr Poses Topless Plane crashes in San Diego Costco parking lot Justin Bieber Takes To Instagram To Diss Orlando Bloom You Won't Believe the Celeb Cameos in "Sharknado 2" Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity