Bloomfield girls basketball will go for a semistate title Saturday.
Welp. We are here again.
Bloomfield girls basketball has gone further than what people thought they could. If that sounds familiar it’s because that is something the Lady Cardinals have done the last three seasons.
In 2021, Bloomfield was shorthanded when it played North Central in the sectional final. Coach Ron Knepp played his starting five the entire game and it paid off. It was a surprising sectional as Bloomfield lost to WRV in the regular season. Knepp and the Cardinals poked fun at the local sports editor who wrote about the inconsistencies of the team prior to sectionals and boy did they let me know about it.
A year later, Bloomfield started 3-8 and had a 41-35 loss to Barr-Reeve where its offense had crashed. I left that game thinking a sectional title was highly doubtful.
Sure enough, Bloomfield won five straight prior to sectionals and played the same North Central team in the sectional final. Once again, North Central was favored but it did not matter. Bloomfield won on a basket by Kinley Moody.
Siera Babcock became the new coach for the 2022-23 season. Ultimately, I knew how it would play out even with the coaching change. Once again, Bloomfield started slow with a 4-11 record. This time I did not even blink.
When the Cardinals lost to the Lady Miners of Linton by the wide margin of 75-27, I did not even think about it. Heck, I made sure to cover Shakamak and Eastern Green that night for the very reason of not getting caught up in the score. Two years ago, when I saw Bloomfield lose to Linton it made me doubt the team. Now, it’s just part of the journey for a postseason run.
Even in the sectional final against North Central on Feb. 4, I expected Bloomfield to win. When North Central came out and took a 6-0 lead it was just part of the script with these Lady Cardinals. Bloomfield would win the sectional 53-46 over North Central even though the Thunderbirds won the regular season meeting.
In the regional, Bloomfield beat Eminence 40-19 in a game that was never in doubt. Now, the team will once again be a big underdog Saturday against the field at the New Albany Semistate. It’s where this team wants to be.
After three seasons of watching the Lady Cardinals one thing is clear. It does not matter who the players are or who is coaching the team, this program feeds off of the angst of being overlooked and counted out.
Saturday, I have a funny feeling I will be spending my entire day in New Albany. Watching Bloomfield take the lead against No. 1 Lanesville in the third quarter in the semistate final wondering ‘How does this keep happening?’
When no one believes in you, that’s when a team makes a surprise. For the last few years, Bloomfield has mastered this skill and it is why I will not underestimate the Cards Saturday.
Nathan Pace is the sports editor for the Greene County Daily World and can be reached at email@example.com. His “Low Budget Sports Show” airs weekly on Facebook Live.