North Sioux City, S.D. (KELO) – If you only had one word to describe Dakota Valley’s Isaac Bruns, your best and most accurate option may be competitive.
“Even in an open gym or whatever in the summer, if he shows up for an open gym, even if it’s a bunch of old coaches playing against them or whatever, if you score on him, he doesn’t like it. He gets ticked off,” Dakota Valley Head Coach Jason Kleis said.
The past two seasons, the Panther attack was led by his older brother, Paul, but with him leaving to graduation, the focal point of the offense would shift towards Isaac.
“The first half of every game, he probably didn’t average that many points. He would kind of pick his spots and then second half, the game would loosen up a little bit and he knew that was his time,” Kleis spoke of the junior guard.
After putting up 24 points and nearly 9 rebounds a night, Bruns would help lead Dakota Valley to a perfect 20-0 regular season record and the number one overall seed heading into the state tournament.
“We knew kind of from the beginning we had a pretty special team and we had a lot of great players with good experience and like I said, we had a little bit of extra motivation from the year before,” Dakota Valley junior guard Isaac Bruns said.
That fire would stem from a semi finals last year against Sioux Valley, the very same school they would see this year in the Class A state championship.
“I think it was extra motivation when we saw them get to the finals. They looked great in the semifinal game and our guys had a focus in their eyes that night that I hadn’t seen for awhile and they’d been focused all year,” Kleis stated.
DV would go on to win 82-65, claiming the first boys basketball state championship in program history.
“It was definitely something I won’t forget. I know we worked towards that. For me, it’s been like two years; I think that we could do that last year. But finally getting it done and knowing everything that we had been through was pretty special,” Bruns said of the championship run.