Basketball honors pile up for Trinity’s Jaynes


Someone connected to the Golden Arches confused Sydney Jaynes for a guy, but her nomination as a McDonald’s All-American basketball player got straightened out in a hurry Thursday.

Sharing a first name not only with the capital of Australia but with basketball players of the male persuasion, as well, Jaynes found her name among boys basketball players on the national list at first rather than among the girls.

A spokesman for the All-American group admitted the error and said it would be fixed promptly.

Meanwhile, Jaynes, who averaged about 20 points a game as a 6-foot-3 center for Trinity Lutheran’s 20-5 team this winter, knows who she is, as in a girl.

“Exactly,” said Jaynes, who did say, “I saw everyone else was a boy” on the list she consulted and figured something was amiss.

Being cited for such recognition was not something Jaynes, who is scheduled to play for NCAA Division I Butler next year, expected.

“I’m super excited,” she said. “I never thought this would happen.”

Jaynes was jokingly informed that being nominated, never mind being selected for the squad, meant she received free McDonald’s eats for life. Hypothetically, if such a reward followed, she said, she would be pleased to accept the cinnamon melt offering.

“You can’t pass up free food,” Jaynes said.

Actually, the food part is not part of the deal.

This is the 44th year of McDonald’s’ connection to high school basketball All-Americans, but those chosen for 2020-21 will not actually participate in a live game as is typical, instead being recognized in a virtual celebration.

Trinity coach Mike Lang referred to Jaynes’ inclusion on the nomination list as “a huge honor.”

As if that wasn’t big enough news, Jaynes also learned Thursday she has been selected by the Hoosier Basketball Coaches Association to play for the East team in its annual All-Star game.

That game for seniors is still on for April 25 at Barr-Reeve with restrictions on fan attendance because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The game is scheduled to be broadcast live on Facebook.

Capping Jaynes’ day of recognition was word she has been invited to the Hoosier Basketball Magazine Girls Top 60 Senior Workout on March 7 at Beech Grove. The magazine, in its 40th year of involvement, said the program recognizes “the top players in the graduating class of girls basketball for the state of Indiana.”

Jaynes said she was thrilled but a little overwhelmed by this deluge of honors all at once. It may be in future years, she will add Feb. 18 to a personal list of holidays as Basketball Day, right after Valentine’s Day on the calendar.

“It has been exciting,” she said. “It’s always nice to get any recognition for how much work I put in.”

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