(Editor's note: MTN Sports is featuring a Midland Roundtable Athlete of the Year finalist nightly leading into this year's awards banquet Wednesday, May 18, at the Billings Hotel and Convention Center. Ten graduating seniors (five boys, five girls) in Billings are nominated annually by coaches and activities directors before Roundtable members, a group of longtime sports enthusiasts in Billings, vote on one male and one female winner. In rare instances, the award has been shared.)
BILLINGS - It's no secret Billings Skyview's Brooke Berry is a fierce competitor on the basketball court. But that persona masks what a lot of others may not know about her.
"I'm really a girly girl, which people don't really see when they look at me," Berry admitted to MTN Sports. "Off the court I definitely like fashion."
Truth is, at a young age, she fashioned herself playing college ball in state after receiving letters letters of interest as early as the 8th grade. Berry says both Montana and Montana State showed interest, but she ultimately committed to New Mexico after narrowing her choices to the Lobos and Rutgers, in New Jersey.
It's understandable why multiple schools showed strong interest after rolling through her rundown of team and statewide honors, which also include volleyball and track notoriety.
But the moment that tops all others in Berry's high school career was when she broke down in tears a just couple months ago on the basketball court when Skyview clinched its first ever girls State AA championship.
"That was such a full-circle moment," she vividly recalled. "I could cry just talking about it because all the hard stuff that we went through my freshman year -- we won one game -- and I had so many people come up to me and be like, so where you going to transfer? Is it Central, is it West, is it Senior? And I was like, no, I'm staying at Skyview and I'm just going to tough it out and we're going to build something because I know we have the talent."
Berry was spot on as Skyview claimed a 54-44 win over Missoula Hellgate. But understandably, nerves kept her from sleeping the night before.
"Yes, yes. I woke up at 2 a.m. that night and sat up in my room, turned the lights on and re-watched our whole game from when we played Hellgate the first time at the beginning of the year, and we lost by six.
"Then I just thought of everything (we'd gone through), went back to bed, woke up and we went to shoot-around and the rest was history."
If all else goes as planned, this girly girl is just getting started.