Home Sports Historic Hawk Boys Basketball Season Ends in Heartbreaking Fashion

Historic Hawk Boys Basketball Season Ends in Heartbreaking Fashion

The Hawks break the huddle following a timeout against North Linn in the 2023 1A State Semifinals.

Click here for Remsen St. Mary’s State basketball photo gallery – Courtesy of Elizabeth Fisch

A historic season for Remsen St. Mary’s boys basketball came to a heartbreaking end in Wednesday’s state semifinal in a loss to second-ranked North Linn by a score of 52-50.

The unfortunate scenario of the month of March in the world of basketball is the teams who see their season come to an end in the blink of an eye. It is easy to get caught up in basing the success of the season on that last game. Co-Head Coach Justin Ruden says that should not be the case with this group who played an outstanding final game.

The Hawks came out with a ton of confidence on the offensive end. That showed in their ability to hit shots early and their ability to easily navigate North Linn’s lock down press that has given teams across the state trouble this season. The Hawks finished with four players in double figure scoring on offense which has been the status quo for them this year.

Things were looking good after the first half with the Hawks up 31-19. Things looked good after the third quarter with RSM leading 45-32. Then, the fourth quarter came, and North Linn put together an improbable comeback. The Lynx outscored the Hawks 20-5 in the final eight minutes thanks to hitting 5-7 three point field goals in the quarter. Outside of that run, the Hawk defense came to play making it tough early on for the Lynx to get in their offense.

The Hawks had never made it to the state championship game and looked well on their way to break that after three quarters. The issue for the Hawks was whether to keep their intensity up in the fourth, or to start taking time off the clock and limiting possessions. Coach Ruden says the Hawks may have gotten caught in between in the tough decision and that left them vulnerable to the comeback.

The Remsen St. Mary’s season ends at state for the seventh year in a row. That is no easy feat for a group of seniors who have made Wells Fargo Arena their permanent residence during this week in March. Cael Ortmann is one of those seniors who said all the time they put in to their craft from a young age until now led to them putting together this season.

Nothing more can be said about the success of this senior class. From two state football titles, to four state basketball tournament appearances, to being state runner-up in baseball last year, the Hawks have done everything a high school athlete can dream of. For Ortmann and crew, the memories go all the way back to when they first started competing in an organized form with each other.

Coach Ruden says this group of seniors has been great to coach, and he hopes they set a foundation for years to come on what it means to be a Hawk.

The St. Mary’s basketball season ends with a record of 23-3 and graduates five seniors off the roster in Alex Schroeder, Cael Ortmann, Ryan Willman, Jaxon Bunkers, and Kaden Groepper. North Linn advances to Friday’s championship game with an unbeaten record to face off with Grand View Christian for the second year in a row.

Click here for Remsen St. Mary’s State basketball photo gallery – Courtesy of Elizabeth Fisch