Coach offers praise for players during banquet

For The Tribune

BROWNSTOWN

Coach Karla Rieckers said the seniors on this year’s Brownstown Central girls basketball team are a special group of athletes.

The Braves went 19-5 this winter, and included in that group of games was an undefeated Mid-Southern Conference title, the Toby Yoho Tournament title and several school records.

Rieckers said this team tied the school mark for the lowest defensive average of 44 points per game, set the highest field-goal shooting record for a season at 45 percent and set the record for the most assists per game at 13.5.

The Braves were honored in the school cafeteria Tuesday night, with Brooke Ebbing taking home most valuable player honors, as well as several other awards.

Ebbing led the team in scoring with 444 points. She had back-to-back 30 point games in December with 31 against Clarksville and 30 against Austin. She also scored 30 against Scottsburg in the final game of the regular season and was in the 20s nine games.

She received the free-throw award for making 97 of 122 for 80 percent. She also received the assists award with 73 for the season.

Ebbing ranks seventh on the career points list with 927, and she is seventh in 3-point baskets with 46 and fifth in career field goals with 231.

“She had more athletic ability than any of the other senior girls up here,” Rieckers said. “She asked the most questions of anyone on the team.”

Ebbing was named to Hoosier Basketball Magazine’s top 100 seniors and was named to the Hoosier Basketball Coaches Association all-district team, along with Riley Wischmeier and Kasandra Rieckers.

They will play in an all-star game April 26.

Wischmeier received the shooting and rebound awards. She made 93 of 173 shots from the floor for 54 percent and had 66 offensive and 121 defensive rebounds for a total of 187 and an average of 7.8 per game.

The senior ranked second on the team in scoring with 246 points for an average of 10.3 per game and had high games of 21 against Columbus East and 19 against Scottsburg. Wischmeier scored in double figures 13 games.

“Riley always seemed to keep the same attitude,” coach Rieckers said, adding that she hoped her senior center would have played tougher and rougher at times.

Kasandra Rieckers received the mental attitude award.

“She knows the game better than any girl I have been around,” her mother said. “She had surgery during the summer (torn ACL) and worked her tail off to get back. She will be a manager for the Indiana University women’s team next year.”

The other special varsity award was the outstanding defensive award that went to Olivia Goecker.

“She was the hardest worker on the team,” coach Rieckers said. “In most of our games she guarded the top scorer on the other team. She was very fast.”

Rieckers said Goecker played an outstanding defensive game against Salem and held their leading scorer to five free throws.

Ally Lorenzo, Rieckers and Wischmeier were named by the Indiana Coaches of Girls Sports Association as academic all-state honorable mention.

Junior varsity coach Sam Terrell introduced members of his team and said it had a record of 17-2.

He presented two special awards, with Madison Klinge receiving the free-throw award and Emma Zabor was named the most improved.

Rieckers said the nine seniors, seven players and two managers, meant a lot to the program over the past four years. “They gave countless hours to the basketball team,” she said.

The coach presented plaques to the seniors.

She said the class helped the school win the Toby Yoho Classic three times, as the tournament was snowed out two years ago.

Rieckers announced varsity assistant coach Andrea Pendleton and freshman coach George Wooten resigned their positions.

Wooten coached basketball in the Brownstown school system for 18 years, and Pendleton had been with the girls program the past four years.

Rieckers said with seven senior players graduating there are several varsity spots open. There are three juniors and six freshman returning, and 10 incoming freshmen.

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