HEBRON | For South Central's Jill Rosenbaum, 13 proved to be her lucky number Saturday.
That's how many points and rebounds the 5-foot-10 senior forward recorded to power the Satellites to a 47-38 victory over Kouts that gave S.C. its first Porter County Conference tournament championship.
“It was really emotional,” Rosenbaum said. “I’ve never been this happy before in my life, honestly. It’s all I’ve ever wanted.”
South Central took the lead for good on a Rosenbaum jumper with just over three minutes left in the first quarter. Kouts (10-7) fought back to cut the lead to one, 34-33, on a 3-pointer from Bella Wireman to open the fourth quarter, but the Satellites (10-6) answered with a 13-5 run to close the game.
“We’re really comfortable with each other, and we kept telling ourselves to calm down, calm down and stay cool,” Rosenbaum said. “We just kept talking to each other and I think that help a lot.”
The lead reached double digits for South Central on Katelyn Tucker’s 3-pointer with 2:22 left in the game.
In addition to Rosenbaum, Tucker and Riley Popplewell added 11 points apiece. Megan Heinold scored a game-high 14 points for Kouts, and Wireman added 12 points on four 3-pointers.
Satellites head coach Rick Budka was happy with his team’s ability to stay calm during the Fillies’ comeback effort, and gave credit to a hard early-season schedule.
“If you look at our schedule, we added a lot of (bigger) schools and those were all really close throughout the entire game,” Budka said. “I think that taught us at the beginning of the season to not panic in these situations.
“We’ve had a few blowout wins lately, but games like this, championship games against a great team like Kouts, they’re not going to go away so we have to make every possession count.”
Fatigue played a factor in the championship game after the semifinal round was postponed from Friday night to Saturday morning. Kouts beat Hebron in the semifinal and South Central upset Times No. 6 Morgan Township.
“I think it was a little bit because it was so early in the morning,” Rosenbaum said. “But I think we played really well. We played the best basketball we’ve ever played this morning. It was good luck.”
With 28 points on the day, Rosenbaum is now 14 points away from becoming just the third player in South Central school history to reach the 1,000 mark in her career.