By Justin Whitaker
— The Brownsburg girls’ basketball team’s most successful season in 12 years came to an end Saturday.
A 20-4 record and sectional championship should help coat the Bulldogs’ 57-46 loss to the Roncalli Rebels in the Decatur Central regional.
The 1-2 punch of Purdue-bound Bridget Perry and freshman Lindsey Corsaro provided too much for Brownsburg to handle.
“We had a little difficulty defending them,” Brownsburg coach Amy Brauman said. “They are both good 3-point shooters and can attack the basket.”
Neither team was able to muster much offense in the second quarter as the Bulldogs outscored the Rebels 4-2 and led 16-14.
In the second half, Roncalli outscored Brownsburg 43-30.
“It was a close game, there was just a run that they made that we couldn’t respond to,” Brauman said. “The girls played as hard as they could. We just came upon a team that could defend us and we haven’t quite encountered shooters like that in a long time.”
While the regional was the end of the road for Brownsburg’s season, they have much to look back on and celebrate.
The Bulldogs won their first sectional in 12 years and became the second team in Hendricks County history to win four straight county championships.
“Overall, the girls were very sad that it has come to an end,” Brauman said. “Primarily because they enjoy spending time together and did such a great job winning sectionals. On the other hand, they are keeping it in perspective that they were able to do what no one has done for Brownsburg in the last 12 years and that is win a sectional.”
After the Bulldogs were eliminated the past three postseasons by the Giants, Brownsburg earned retribution and won 40-39 in the sectional semifinal.
Brauman’s favorite memory of her sixth year coaching at Brownsburg and second 20-win season is that dramatic victory.
“Getting down eight points and having the resilience to come back and win,” she said.
Until Saturday’s game, the Bulldogs were undefeated in 2013. After suffering a 51-45 defeat to Mooresville on Dec. 27, Brownsburg rattled off 13 straight wins by an average of 15.5 points per game.
“It was a lot of fun,” Brauman said of the Bulldogs’ season. “It certainly takes a lot of work to get a bunch of girls to play together as a team. They bought into that, they knew what their roles were.”
In the whirlwind of certain situations, people are not able to soak in the moment and truly register what they accomplished. Brauman believes the Bulldogs’ achievements have not fully set in yet for her team.
“Once you win a sectional, you’re thrilled that you won it, but you’re looking forward to the regional at that point in time,” she said. “Once the sting of losing in regionals wears off, I think that they’ll be able to look back and realize what they accomplished this season.”
North Carolina recruit Stephanie Mavunga averaged team-highs of 23 points, 12.6 rebounds, and 3.8 blocks per game this season. The 6-foot-4 senior also became the first McDonald’s All-American in Brownsburg history.
Mavunga was the leader of the seven Bulldogs seniors and ends her time at Brownsburg with Natalie Kroll, Margaret Oles, Kayle Comer, Lindsey Low, Mackenzie Trout, and Brooke Bronger.
‘That’s one of the saddest things for the coaches is that once the players leave on that final game, it’s one of those things where you’re never going to have them in that same circumstance again,” Brauman said. “We’re all going to miss them. They were all hard workers and just great kids.”
Those seven seniors left their mark on the Brownsburg program as they tied for the second most successful four-year span in school history. In the past four seasons, the Bulldogs have gone 76-18 for a winning percentage of 80.9.
“I think it says a lot about their commitment to each other and to getting better,” Brauman said. “We won some games that we probably shouldn’t have but primarily just because they didn’t give up.
“It says a lot about their character and I think they are going to go on and be successful in college whether they play sports or don’t play sports. As sad as it is to see them go, it’ll be fun to see where they go from here.”