NO. 41

Good enough

During the early 1990s, Tiffany Gooden ushered in a new era for girls basketball in Fort Wayne.

Tiffany Gooden seemed to be able to do anything on a basketball court.

Fort Wayne first became aware of Gooden's abilities when she teamed with Leslie Johnson to help the Decatur Thunderbirds win the 13-and-under national AAU title in 1989. That began a dominating decade for girls basketball in Fort Wayne, and Gooden led the way.

A few years later, Gooden and company won three AAU national titles in four years as part of Mohr Magic.

Gooden's high school career was the best individually in northeast Indiana basketball history. She scored 2,198 points to break the area's career scoring record, including 29.9 points, 13.5 rebounds per game her junior year and 29.9 points and 9.5 rebounds per game as a senior.

At the culmination of her high school career in 1994 as Indiana's Miss Basketball, Gooden led a late Indiana rally as the Hoosier girls completed a two-game sweep of the Kentucky All-Stars with a 100-92 victory. Gooden's 24 points, coupled with her record 31 points a week earlier, broke the 17-year-old two-game series mark of 54 points.

She was selected as the National Player of the Year by Parade Magazine and the Naismith Foundation.

That led to her career at Iowa University where she earned All-Big Ten honors as a sophomore and senior, and conference Freshman of the Year honors. She finished with 1,024 career points, overcoming a second knee injury in her junior year.

After a 13-game stint with the ABL's Colorado Xplosion in 1998, Gooden's pro career ended when the league folded. She's currently in her first year of law school at Iowa and hopes to play in the WNBA next summer.

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