|THE STORY OF THE
In 1999 the Brossart Mustangs, a small Class A school from Alexandria opened the season in fine fashion, winning
our first six regular season games including a victory over the then top ranked team in all of Northern Kentucky,
Covington Catholic. It appeared as though it was going to be another banner year.
At that point, however, we somehow took the off ramp on the road to success, losing more games than we were
winning, but still remained focused on becoming Class â€œAâ€� Champions of the Tenth Region and advancing to
the â€œAâ€� State Tournament in Richmond. This was a realistic goal set by Coach Willie Schlarman and his staff
in evaluating this team and its potential in the preseason. Everything done prior to that event was directed at
attaining this goal.
On January 20,2000 the dream was shattered by Nicholas County when we saw a seven point fourth quarter lead
dissolve and the Bluejackets, who would lose in the tournament finals, emerge victorious and eliminated us from
the All "A" Regional tournament..
Many thought that our season was over. Thoughts began to turn to spring and the upcoming baseball season, and
after losing to Boone County in our homecoming game and losing five of our last six regular season games it
appeared as though the Brossart Mustangs had packed it in for the 2000 season. Our regular season ended with a
mediocre 13-12 record.
District and regional tournament time is known as the â€œsecond seasonâ€� for a number of reasons. One is
because it renews the interests of the players and fans alike and defines very clearly the ramifications of winning or
losing - Win or go home.
Former Scott and Grant County Coach Carl Wenderoth used to say that it took a â€œGood Draw, a Good Call and a
Good Bounce of the Ballâ€� to win at tournament time.
The Mustangs drew opposite cross-town neighbor Campbell County in the District, which eased the mental aspect of
a sudden death shootout with the archrival Camels in an early round. We defeated our first and second round
opponents and then the Camels in the District Finals to claim the 38th District championship.
As we rode to Maysville for the regional tournament draw I think that we as a staff were happy to be in the
tournament but far from considered ourselves favorites by any means. Again we received another a good draw,
opposite Clark County, who were ranked fifteenth in the state and heavily favored to win the Tenth. Clark would
play Mason County the home team in the opening round.
Things suddenly turned dead serious when Mason upset Clark Co. It was a somber ride home that night from â
€œThe Fieldhouseâ€� as we realized that we had defeated the remaining teams in the tournament at one point or
other during the season. We were suddenly contenders and began daring to think â€¦â€¦â€¦ What If???
The rest as they say is history. We defeated Harrison County and St. Patrick in the opening and semi-final rounds,
then were faced with the task of defeating the home team, Mason County in the title game to earn the trip to
Rupp. Tied at 50, the game came down to the final 18 seconds. Senior Justin Seiter had scored 26 points on the
night and had ended each previous quarter with a bucket. This last quarter would be no exception. Coach
Schlarman ran a clear out for him and the senior captain delivered with an off-balance underhand scoop shot which
rolled around and around the rim before dropping through and sending the Brossart Mustangs to the promised land
of high school hoops.
If I live to be a thousand, I will never forget that moment, the onslaught of our fans storming the floor, we coaches
embracing for what seemed like minutes as Coach Schlarman repeatedly squealed â€œWe Won Itâ€� over and over
again. Justin Seiter was hoisted upon the shoulders of his teammates as the Fieldhouse PA played â€œWe Are the
Championsâ€� in salute to the new Tenth Region Champs.
Following a rowdy celebration and reception back at school that night, we were informed that Louisville Ballard, the
predominant season-long Number One team in the State had been upset and were out of the tournamnet. We
would play Graves County from Region One on Thursday afternoon as our first round opponent.. Graves County
was a team who had made eight trips to Rupp, was 27-3 and had lost only once this season to a team from the
Commonwealth. That night we couldnâ€™t have cared less. We were 10th Region Champs and were going to
Rupp. How ironic, Ballard was out, Brossart was in.
For the next few days it was quite hectic, we had no busses and the cost of a charter was out of the realm of our
budget. It first appeared as if we would make our first trip to Rupp in the Barleycornâ€™s Land Yacht, an old bus
owned by a local eatery which was used to shuttle customers from the restaurant to Reds and Bengals games. It
seemed as though every team that we had ever played called or sent notes of congratulations, there were rosters
and stats sheets to be filled out and returned by deadlines. Every major newspaper TV affiliate across the State was
calling for information and interviews. Reporters and cameramen were sitting in and filming at practice. We were
selling â€œWeâ€™re Going To Ruppâ€� tee shirts faster than our silk-screener could produce them. All hell had
broken loose at Brossart High School.
On Tuesday afternoon, the day before our departure, some local businesses had pitched in and provided us with an
Executive Charter bus. We were now to travel in style.
We had elected to depart on Wednesday morning, and following a pep-rally sendoff we were on our way to
Lexington, complete with a police escort. After checking into our hotel, we fed the troops at McDonalds and bought
up some Lexington Herald-Leader previews and passed them around. There we were featured among the elite of the
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