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All about effort: Maggie Bruns excelling on and off the court

BLOOMING PRAIRIE — If Blooming Prairie junior Maggie Bruns is taking a moment to relax, she probably won’t be doing it for very long.

Bruns, a starting guard on the BP girls basketball team that is playing in the Section 1A semifinals at 11 a.m. today in Mayo Civic Center, finds plenty of ways to stay busy. Bruns competes in basketball, volleyball, softball and trap shooting for the Awesome Blossoms and she also maintains a GPA that hovers slightly 4.0.

Bruns’s course-load includes college algebra, Spanish 3 and physics. She also finds time stay active in 4-H, FFA, Meals on Wheels, Feed My Starving Children speech and band. Bruns also finds time to teach Sunday School at her church,

“Ever since I’ve been little, my parents have taught me that school comes first and the other stuff comes after,” Bruns said. “It’s about time management and working while I’m in school has been a big thing. I get my stuff done in school, so I can do the extra stuff after school. I work hard in everything I do.”

Bruns was recently notified that she is a winner of the ExCel Award, which honors students who are active in sports, education and community. She will be honored at the Minnesota State Girls Basketball Tournament in Williams Arena on March 14.

If Bruns and the Blossoms have it their way, she’ll be playing in that state tournament as BP is the top seed in Section 1A. The Blossom’s last state tournament trip was in 1999 when current BP volleyball coach Ranell Kittelson was on the team, but the Blossoms have looked like a contender this winter as they hold a record of 20-5 overall.

“In the past we’ve had close games at the Civic Center, and we want to get past that point,” Bruns said. “We’ve had so much fun together, and that’s been part of our success. We’ve come together as a group and all of us being together last year really helped our communication this year.“

Blooming Prairie’s Maggie Bruns fields a ground ball against Hayfield. Herald File Photo

No matter how big the game is, Bruns is not stressed out by sports. In fact, she uses them to relieve the stress of her focus on academics and volunteering.

A typical basketball game for Bruns involves her dad coaching, her sister Bobbie on the court with her, her mom in the stands and her brothers running the video.

“Whenever I’m out on the court or on the field, it calms me down,” Bruns said. “When I feel stressed, I just go to the gym and I play basketball.”

Although she still has another year of high school remaining, Bruns is already thinking about going to college to become a nurse. The position would be a natural fit for Bruns, who always finds extra time to help out.

“Blooming is such a great community. Whenever somebody needs help, everybody is there to back them up,” Bruns said. “With the Bakery (burning down), you can see how close everyone is. It makes you want to help, without even thinking about it. You feel like you have to help and you just want to help.”

Blooming Prairie girls basketball players Ashlei Alwes, from left, Jillian Leghan and Maggie Bruns cross a street to deliver food for the Blooming Prairie’s Meals on Wheels. Herald File Photo