The Burns Lady Broncs: Underdogs Turned Champions

Published: Mar. 9, 2023 at 12:01 AM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - The Lady Broncs just keep making history.

Only a few months after Burns Volleyball won their first state title in 30 years, the girls basketball team went out and added a brand new page to the record books with their first ever championship.

“It’s crazy. I definitely think winning basketball because no one ever has from our school is crazy. Let alone volleyball also. That’s definitely history, and I think that’s definitely a new standard for us. To at least compete at a really high level in both, and win every year if we can,” junior Savannah Kirkbride said.

This accomplishment was certainly not what others expected from the Lady Broncs. They were a four seed with a losing record entering the state tournament, and the only people who believed in their abilities were themselves. The doubt simply added fuel to the fire.

“We definitely took notice of the people that didn’t think we could do it. When we were in 3A we were definitely the underdogs there too, and people were always like ‘oh, you couldn’t do it in 3A so you did it in 2A’. But I think that we proved we belong wherever we are,” senior Daljit Kaur said.

“We had never done anything like that before, so we might as well prove ourselves. Like I said we had nothing to lose. We might as well just go out and play. All the teams that we had been playing, they had everything to lose. So we might as well just show everybody what’s up,” junior Brooke Hansen added.

Head Coach Barry Ward referenced the classic underdog comparison in his message to the team before the championship game.

“I told them a little story about Cinderella because I knew that’s what everybody was going to be talking about, you know? And I said at the end of that movie when the slipper gets broken, Cinderella pulls the other one out of her pocket and said ‘I have the other one’. I said ‘you guys should believe that you already have the other one,’” Ward said.

The team didn’t just make it happen, they had to go through a murderer’s row of opponents to get there. First, they beat 2A number one and defending champs Rocky Mountain by 15. The following day they went down to the wire with number three Sundance, .ut clutched up down the stretch to advance.

In the championship showdown, conference rival Lingle-Ft. Laramie awaited. The Lady Doggers had a winning record against Burns, including a 16 point win the week before at regionals. Evidently that didn’t matter to the new champions.

The bond this team has with each other is apparent, as well as how much they cherish this title.

“It means so much. Like the first couple days it felt so unreal. It just felt like another basketball game honestly. But now that I’ve gotten time to think about it, it has been an honor. Especially that it’s our school’s first time for girls basketball to win state. It felt so good, and I’m so glad to be sharing it with the teammates that I have,” junior Jordan Griess said.

“I’m incredibly proud. Boy, I mean it’s pretty emotional, and I spent a lot of time tearing up on Sunday and a little bit now. It’s pretty special,” Ward said.

Congratulations to the Lady Broncs on their monumental run.