Though scoring 1,000 points in a high school basketball career is no small accomplishment, Fort Osage senior Raven Bunn thinks of the game before she achieved that milestone as more memorable.
When the Indians girls team traveled to Class 5 No. 2 Kearney to face the unbeaten Bulldogs in the semifinals of their tournament last week, Bunn had 998 points. She scored 10 in a loss. But the game before, in the first round of the Bulldog Classic, the versatile Bunn tallied a career-high 28 points and stuffed the stat sheet with five rebounds, five assists and five steals.
Furthermore, Bunn’s sophomore sister Paige tied her career best with 22 points in that game as Fort Osage cruised past Notre Dame de Sion.
“That was probably my best game in high school,” said Raven Bunn, a 5-foot-9 four-year starter who is averaging 15.2 points this season through 14 games. “I felt a connection with my sister and my teammates, and we beat a good team.
“It was cool to get 1,000 points, but it wasn't a cool game to get it in.”
Fort Osage coach Dawn Williams said Raven, who will be honored at a later game, is quite similar to the school's last 1,000-point scorer, Rae Stewart.
“She was the same build; she was a slasher,” Williams said. “I could play her at post or guard.
“I literally can play (Raven) 1 through 5. We’ve gone through a couple post injuries, and she can go in and play there, and she can also be the kid who breaks the press. She can do it all at the high school level.”
Raven, who recently signed to play to college basketball at NCAA Division II Northwest Missouri State, said she knew before the Kearney game how close she was to the milestone – “My dad’s been calculating it since my freshman year,” she said – but it wasn’t until her sophomore or junior season that she realized it could be attained.
“Then I wanted to get it, and it made me work harder,” she said.
Like Raven, Paige started on varsity as a freshman, which the sisters say marked the first time they played together on an organized team.
“We argued a lot,” Paige said with a smile, “but I know where she wants her passes and what she’s going to do.
“I know what she’s going to shoot, where she’s going to pass,” Raven added.
“It’s amazing,” she said of having her younger sister on the same team. “We have a connection, because I’ve known her since she was born. Not a lot of people get to experience that.”
“They’ve always had it,” Williams said of that connection. “Now, it’s neat to see the other kids have it (with Paige). They guard each other in practice, and sometimes I don't allow it, because they really go at it, but their drive and will to win helps us in practice.”
Aided by that natural familiarity, and the chemistry that comes from having eight letter winners back from last season, the Indians are 9-5 this season, including 3-0 in the Suburban Middle Seven.
They’ve continued a steady improvement from Raven Bunn’s freshman season. Fort Osage finished the last three seasons 7-15, 12-14 and 13-11.
“We’re hoping to win conference,” Raven said. “It’s probably my best year since I’ve been in high school, and the team has really bonded. We’ve played good and bonded good.”