LUSK – Retiring head coach Deb Murray hosted her last team banquet last week at the senior center.
She insisted it was a suggestion from Director Mary Larson that she and Rich become regulars with more free time. While emotions were high and many tears flowed, it was a memorable night for the Niobrara County High School girls’ basketball team.
The varsity seniors were given captain bars, with Courtney Rowley and Riley Shaw earning a white letter for four years of varsity. Murray also presented the two with their jerseys and all-state awards. The pair were also both nominated for the Bob Carey Award and Wyoming Coaches Association All Star game. Shaw was voted to the all-star game, and Rowley is the first alternate.
Bryn Bruch, Jozalyn Potter and Anna Richardson picked up their third varsity letter. Abby Kottwitz, Danni Larson and Marina Sherwood earned their second one. Jaden Stauffer, Lily Krueger, Evelyn DesEnfants and Larkin Williams also collected their second letter. Larissa Johnson and freshmen Phoebe Allbright and Melody ZumBrunnen earned their first letter.
Shaw and Allbright completed the 10,000-shot club, as Shaw did it six straight years. She also won the handle and defensive excellence awards, while Rowley won the free throw ladder and three-point awards. Richardson took home the rebounding and defensive excellence awards, and Bruch was the varsity academic athlete. Kottwitz scored the offensive efficiency award, and Krueger the free throw and most improved awards. Bruch, Larson and Potter earned the coaches award. Six players earned Iron Lady awards for not missing a single game or practice: Shaw (3), Rowley (2), Richardson (2), Bruch (1), DesEnfants (1) and ZumBrunnen (1).
Assistants Rich Murray and Cora Fitzgerald presented the junior varsity and C squad awards with Williams winning the offensive efficiency and free throw awards. DesEnfants won the handle award, and Johnson was most improved player. ZumBrunnen won the defensive excellence and rebounding honors. Stauffer and Allbright won the Coaches Award, and Allbright was also named as team Academic Athlete winner. Elyse Richards, Sammy Miles, Hattie Nelson and Serenity Reynolds earned JV certificates for their improvement and contributions.