High school athletes have different reasons for liking their favorite sport.

For Brownstown Central’s Kasandra Rieckers, she likes the strategy of basketball.

“I just love the sport,” Rieckers said. “Basketball is moves and counter-moves, and just try to pick apart the defense and whatever they’re in, if they are pressing or whatnot. I just really like that aspect of the game.”

Rieckers, who started her sophomore and junior seasons for the Braves, has had to make adjustments to her game this season because of tearing the ACL in her right knee.

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“We were playing in a summer game June 13 at a school between Lafayette and Indianapolis,” Rieckers said. “There were 15 seconds left on the clock and we were down one. I was trying to get to the free-throw line for a layup and a girl fouled me, and I hit my knee and that’s how it happened. I tore it completely.”

She had surgery June 24 and missed the first 10 games this season before seeing action against Bloomington North in the Toby Yoho Holiday Tournament at Eastern Greene. She made her presence felt in that game by scoring 11 points.

Rieckers said it has been a slow process to get back to the level she was playing at before the injury.

“I feel comfortable, but there have been a couple times where I felt a little anxious,” she said. “Mostly I’m still the same player, but I do think I’ve changed a little bit. I’m still not back 100 percent so I’m not as fast as I could be.”

Rieckers now acts as a scoring threat off the bench.

“My role has changed a little bit on the team from being the starting point guard to coming off the bench,” Rieckers said. “A lot of times I’ll go in for Morgan Wehmiller.

“I’ve had a lot of time practicing my shooting with being out because that was the first thing they let me do. I was able to shoot right away after surgery, so I’ve been able to concentrate on that.

She said she will take whatever the defense gives her, either the perimeter shot or take the ball to the basket

“It doesn’t really matter, I do both,” Rieckers said. “I would rather play against a man (defense) because we can spread the defense out and drive. If the drive is not there we can get it into our post players. They can score pretty easily against most teams.”

Following surgery, Rieckers has made adjustments to her defense.

“Before surgery I liked to play man, but now I can’t move as well so I like to go to a 3-2, but I can handle man,” Rieckers said. “I really like to press. I think it gets us going more. We get more opportunities to score.”

The Braves are leading the Mid-Southern Conference, and Rieckers feels the team can’t afford to take plays off in order to keep winning.

“We have to compete every single possession of every game,” Rieckers said. “That’s what we’ve tried to focus on, work hard and give a good effort. Sometimes you can play the greatest game in the world and still lose. You just have to try and give it your best every single time. I’ve learned to play every game like it’s my last.”

Her high-point games were 16 against North Harrison and 15 against Corydon, both during her junior year.

Rieckers, who began her basketball career in third grade at Sauers St. John’s, has tried to fill a leadership role.

“Being a coach’s daughter, I’ve always had that opportunity to lead,” Rieckers said. “I try to help my teammates, and get them the ball so they can score. I think we have really good balance with seven seniors. We’ve played together forever. I think we just know how each other plays the game, and knows what to do in relationship to one-another.”

Kasandra said it has been an interesting experience playing for her mother, Karla.

“It’s really tough,” she said. “It’s a struggle sometimes. After a loss, or if I’ve had a bad practice, she is always there letting me know what I’ve done wrong, but a lot of times she helps me and it really makes me a better person, a better athlete overall having her as a coach.”

For Rieckers, practice needs to be taken seriously.

“It’s really important that we get focused at practice and work hard at every single drill and try to practice like we’re playing in a game because if we practice like we’re playing in a game we’ll be able to handle game-like situations and different things like that,” she said.

On the hardwood

Parents: Pat and Karla Rieckers

Siblings: Derek

Sports: basketball 4 years

Athletic highlights: helped Braves win Toby Yoho tournament in 2011, 2013, 2014; helped team win MSC, was named all-conference honorable mention, and received mental attitude award, all in 2014

Organizations: National Honor Society, Booster Club, Student Council, Lettermen’s Club, 4H.

Attending BCHS: “It’s been really fun. I really like the closeness of the school. The teachers are great here. One of my teachers came in at 6:30 in the morning to help a student one time, and I really think that’s great. They are always willing to help you out and make sure you succeed.”

Plans after high school: attend Indiana University, study education.

Home games: “We have a really great crowd. The atmosphere is amazing and we do have a great community that supports us every single game, no matter where it’s at. That is what I really like.”

Favorite away gym: Corydon

Favorite food: Chicken strips

Favorite TV show: Criminal Minds

Favorite singer: Taylor Swift

Favorite movie: Love and Basketball

Favorite athletes: Skylar Diggins

Favorite teams: Indiana Hoosiers, Indianapolis Colts

Favorite book: Sum It Up – Pat Summit

Favorite quote: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” Philippians 4:13.

Upcoming boys basketball games


Brownstown Central (10-2) at Brown County (8-3)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Brownstown Central def. Trinity Lutheran 67-52, Brown County def. Owen Valley 53-46.

Series past 30 years: Brownstown Central 24-6

Most recent meeting: Brownstown Central won 75-31 on Feb. 24, 2014.

Bedforth North Lawrence (4-11) at Seymour (5-8)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m varsity

Previous outing: Bedford North Lawrence def. Jennings County 69-64. Columbus East def. Seymour 66-38.

Series past 30 years: BNL 29-6

Most recent meeting: BNL won 54-40 on Feb. 15, 2014.

Medora (5-10) at Trinity Lutheran (10-4)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Southwestern (Hanover) def. Medora 49-40, Brownstown Central def. Trinity Lutheran 67-52.

Series past 30 years: Trinity Lutheran 13-4

Most recent meeting: Trinity Lutheran won 77-47 on Feb. 27, 2014

Crothersville (4-13) at South Central (Elizabeth) (2-14)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Columbus Christian def. Crothersville 86-78, Elizabeth def. Cannelton 61-29.

Series past 30 years: Elizabeth 20-10

Most recent meeting: Crothersville won 51-48 on Feb. 18, 2014.


Trinity Lutheran (10-4) at Switzerland County (3-8)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Brownstown Central def. Trinity Lutheran 67-52, South Ripley def. Switzerland County 69-62.

Series past 30 years: Switzerland County 10-0

Most recent meeting: Switzerland County won 59-49 on Dec. 10, 2013.

Rock Creek Academy (11-4) at Medora (5-10)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: SW (Hanover) def. Medora 49-40, Rock Creek Academy def. Washington Catholic 53-23.

Series past 30 years: Rock Creek Academy 11-1

Most recent meeting: Rock Creek Academy won 90-41 on Feb. 24, 2014.

Upcoming girls basketball games


Shoals (1-15) at Medora (5-13)

Game time: 6 p.m.

Previous outing: North Knox def. Shoals 72-18, Orleans def. Medora 50-27.

Series past 10 years: Shoals 8-1

Most recent meeting: Medora won 51-48 on Jan. 17, 2013.


Trinity Lutheran (8-10) at Borden (9-5)

Game time: 1 p.m. JV, 2:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Shawe Memorial def. Trinity Lutheran 44-40, Seymour def. Borden 58-48

Series past 10 years: Borden 3-1

Most recent meeting: Borden won 53-43 on Jan. 19, 2013.

Brownstown Central (15-4) at Brown County (7-11)

Game time: 1 p.m. JV, 2:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Brownstown Central def. New Washington 84-52, Greencastle def. Brown County 63-44.

Series past 10 years: Brownstown Central 6-4

Most recent meeting: Brownstown Central won 41-39 on Jan. 19, 2013.

Crothersville (12-7) at Springs Valley (11-4)

Game time: noon JV, 1:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Austin def. Crothersville 62-50, Paoli def. Springs Valley 38-35.

Series past 10 years: Springs Valley 6-5

Most recent meeting: Springs Valley won 62-25 on Jan. 19, 2014.

Seymour (14-4) at Scottsburg (9-9)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Seymour def. Jeffersonville 36-34, Madison def. Jeffersonville 70-58.

Series past 10 years: Seymour 5-2

Most recent meeting: Seymour won 68-62 on Jan. 19, 2013.


Medora (5-15) at Christian Academy (5-14)

Game time: 7:30 p.m.

Previous outing: Crothersville def. Medora 46-34, Henryville def. Christian Academy 77-40.

Series past 10 years: Christian Academy 15-5

Most recent meeting: Christian Academy won 52-36 on Jan. 27, 2014.


Crothersville (12-7) at New Washington (2-15)

Game time: 6 p.m. JV, 7:30 p.m. varsity

Previous outing: Austin def. Crothersville 62-50, Brownstown Central def. New Washington 84-52.

Series past 10 years: New Washington 9-1

Most recent meeting: New Washington won 65-61 (OT) on Jan. 28, 2014.

Arv Koontz is a sports correspondent for The (Seymour) Tribune.