On Tuesday night the Burns Middle School girls basketball team played Henderson North Middle School in the final home game of the season for the Lady Foxes. This was the first game the team played since the death of teammate Brookelynne Shannon, #22.
“It has been an emotional few weeks for all of us so I was worried the girls wouldn’t be ready, but I was wrong,” Coach Laurel Beaty said. “They were more than ready and played with intensity, but were very relaxed; like they knew Brookelynne had their backs.”
Tuesday was the last home game of the season, meaning that this would be the last game on the BMS court for 8th grade players. To honor their efforts on the team, BMS honored outgoing 8th-grade students that night. In addition, the team presented Brookelynne’s parents and sister with a shadow box containing her #22 jersey.
“We had a really good crowd and the atmosphere was one of sadness and celebration,” Coach Beaty said. “We were there to honor and celebrate our 8th graders, but there was an air of sadness because we knew that one of our own was not there with us.”
According to Coach Beaty, basketball was a secondary sport next to volleyball for Brookelynne. “She accepted her role on the team and worked daily to make herself and her teammates better basketball players. She was encouraging and always had something funny to say.”
The BMS Lady Foxes won their game against Henderson North Middle on Tuesday, propelling them into the conference tournament tomorrow. The final score was 46-24, a 22-point win for the Lady Foxes — 22, the same number Brookelynne would have worn on the court that night.
“As for the 22 point win — simply amazing,” Coach Beaty said. “I wasn’t even aware that we had won by 22 until I came out of the locker room after the game and a friend pointed it out to me. It just furthers our beliefs that Brookelynne is still there with us every step of the way. [The team is] now playing every game in Brookelynne’s honor; using her strength and courage to inspire them.”
The BMS Lady Foxes will play Daviess County Middle AT Owensboro Middle School. The 7th grade game starts at 4:30 p.m. and the 8th grade will follow.