LUSK – Niobrara County High School senior Courtney Rowley made one more memory in Tiger Gym recently. In front of family, teammates, former coaches and future coach, she signed her National Letter of Intent to continue her education and basketball career at Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Mont.
“I’m a little nervous and anxious to start my next step in my life,” she said. “But I’m excited. Rocky Mountain reached out to me, and said they were interested.”
Her future coach Wes Keller drove six hours one-way to witness the event.
“The thing I like about Courtney is, she’s a tough hard-nosed kid,” he said. “I was shocked at how quick she came back from a devastating knee injury, and so, we’re excited to get her on campus and see her growth over the next four years.”
Rowley suffered her injury early during last fall’s volleyball season and worked overtime to be back on the basketball court with her classmates. She was cleared to play in late January, and as the season progressed, gradually got closer to the dynamic player fans had gotten used to. By the time regionals arrived, Rowley helped lead NCHS to a regional championship and fourth place finish at the 2A State Tournament.
The two-time all-state player, and successful FBLA member is interested in small business management and entrepreneurship.
“Once I get up there and settled in I’ll probably decide what I want to do,” Rowley added. “I’d like to run my own business someday. I just don’t know what that is yet.”
Courtney’s former coach Deb Murray beamed with pride shortly after the ink dried.
“The emotions are all over the board. Sure, we’re going to miss her, but on top of that we’re super excited for her to get a great education and hopefully get to play basketball a few more years,” she said. “It’s been a goal of hers since she was quite small, I believe. So, it’s really exciting to see that happen, especially with the adversity she’s gone through with her injuries to be able to realize this.”