Montezuma Bravettes Coach Janel Burgess, who was named one of the Class 1A Iowa Girls Coaches Association Coaches of the Year for 2023, encourages her players in the Regional Championship game against North Linn on Thursday, Feb. 23. Burgess has coached at Montezuma for six years, taking the Bravettes to state four times and compiling an overall record of 127-21.
The Iowa Girls Coaches Association (IGCA) has named Janel Burgess as one of the Coaches of the Year for 2023. Burgess, the coach of the Montezuma Bravettes, represents the Southeast District for Class 1A.
When asked about this honor, Burgess said the season is always about the kids and how much they grow.
“Each moment of this season was a true joy because I get the privilege to coach amazing young ladies on the basketball court,” said Burgess, who led the Bravettes to the Regional championship game and a 21-4 record. “This year will always stand out to me because I do truly believe we reached our fullest potential and each young lady grew as a person and basketball player. We were also playing some of our best basketball down the stretch, which is all any team wants to do. This award is a program award because collectively we had great success.”
Burgess, who played for Montezuma and the Iowa State Cyclones, has led the Bravettes for six years, taking them to state four times and compiling a 127-21 overall record.
“It has been a privilege to have been coached by Coach Burgess these last four years,” said Montezuma senior Madison Johannes. “ She has helped me into the player I am today. I cannot wait to see where she takes the Montezuma Girls’ Basketball program.”
“I’ve really appreciated how passionate Coach Burgess is about our program each and every day,” said senior Kallie Robison. “It takes a special person to show up every day from November – February and make us the best players and people on and off the court. She puts in countless hours in the gym and watching film throughout the year, which allows us to reach our fullest potential.”
“Not only has Coach Burgess been an amazing mentor on the basketball court, but she’s an even better person,” said Montezuma senior Mia Boulton. “Her leadership and commitment to her players is something I’ve been blessed to experience.”
In addition to coaching basketball, Burgess teaches math at Montezuma Community Schools. She was named to the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union Basketball Hall of Fame in 2010, the Montezuma High School Hall of Fame in 2019 and was named the South Iowa Cedar League (SICL) Coach of the Year in 2020-21.
Burgess currently serves on the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Association's Basketball Advisory Committee.