For the Tribune
The Brownstown Central girls basketball team celebrated senior night, and a Mid-Southern Conference title, in grand style Tuesday night.
The Braves defeated Scottsburg 64-57 to win the MSC title with a record of 9-0 after tying for the crown a year ago.
“That was a goal,” Braves coach Karla Rieckers said. “We talked about goals just a little bit, but other than that we really haven’t talked about goals. We just wanted to focus on one game at a time.”
Prior to the game, seniors Olivia Goecker, Bailey Bonebright, Kasandra Rieckers, Brooke Ebbing, Ally Lorenzo, Jaelyn Reynolds and Riley Wischmeier, along with their parents, were introduced.
Coach Rieckers said that group has done a lot for the program.
“My seniors are really special kids,” she said. “Five them have been with me since third grade. They have worked hard, they are multisport athletes, they’re good students, and I’ve never had to worry about them getting in trouble.”
The Braves had an 8-4 lead midway through the first quarter and led 19-16 going into the second period as Ebbing had eight points, Wischmeier five and Reynolds four during that time.
Ebbing added six and Wischmeier notched four points in the second to spark the Braves to a 31-30 lead at the half.
“Tonight we played in longer spurts, but we need to put together a whole game like that,” Rieckers said. “We had a few spurts where we didn’t attack the basket, and we turned the ball over on some unforced turnovers. We’ve got a few days now that we can work on that, and prepare for the sectional next Wednesday.”
Wischmeier opened the scoring in the third period with a layup, Morgan Wehmiller drained a 3-pointer, and Wischmeier added another lay up for a 38-32 lead.
After the Warriors closed the deficit to 40-39, Ebbing took over with seven straight points, and the Braves were on top 50-46 going into the final eight minutes of play.
Scottsburg stayed close at 53-50 before Wischmeier and Ebbing combined for 6 points and a 59-50 lead with 3:10 remaining.
Rieckers felt like her team played better on the second half.
“We have always been a good defensive team, and I was disappointed with how many points we gave up in the first half because we weren’t in a defensive stance, we weren’t moving our feet, they were getting drives to the basket,” she said. “We weren’t closing out on the 3-point shooter, and that was kind of a result of the first-half score. In the second half I thought we did a better job of that.”
Ebbing had her third 30-point game of the season with 13 baskets and 4 for 5 at the line, and Wischmeier added 19 points.
The Braves also topped the boards, with Wischmeier pulling down nine rebounds and Ebbing grabbing eight.
Taylor Means topped the Warriors (11-12, 5-4 MSC) with 16 points, and Emma Waskom added 15.
The Braves are 19-4 and have won five straight games heading into the Scottsburg Sectional, where they will face North Harrison on Feb. 11.