End Of An Era
Kimball Boys Basketball Graduating Strong Senior Class, Awaits New Coaches
March 26, 2020
The senior class of the 2019-20 Kimball High boys basketball team will be remembered for its strong play, and unselfish team play, despite finishing with a win-loss record of 11-12.
With a total of 8 seniors on the team, including foreign exchange student Arthur Laveran, their graduation will leave the program with but a couple of returning squad members.
A new coaching staff will also be in the works as Coach Mo Hanks is moving on to accept the top administration position at Crawford, and assistant Gene Mohr is also stepping aside due a heavy work load. Things look a bit bleak for a few years for the Kimball High Boys.
This past season was enjoyed by Coach Hanks as it gave him one more opportunity to work with a group of young men that he coached way back in their 4th-5th-6th grade elementary years. Coach Hanks stepped in to fill the position when long time Coach Luke Dea moved to Gothenburg.
This year's team had a slower start as they awaited the injury recovery of some key players who were hurt in the football season, or were out for other reasons.
They opened the season at their own Kimball Invite and lost to Dundy County 58-46, but came back to win over Potter-Dix 60-22 to take third. Next up was a 56-54 win at Perkins County, followed by losses to Morrill 63-53, and Hershey 57-48. They got back on the winning trail with a 59-44 win at Bayard and a 60-21 win at South Platte. Chase County handled the Longhorns 59-38, then the Horns got another win over Potter-Dix 67-34, and won by 2 over Bridgeport 49-47, and beat Gordon-Rushville 49-37 to run their record to 7-4 heading into the SPVA Tournament play.
Their three-game win streak halted in the SPVA first round with a 49-29 loss to Hershey, but they came to win 55-43 over Sutherland. The Sutherland Sailors avenged that loss the very next , however, winning 43-42. The Horns lost a few of those close encounters and next up was an overtime loss of 54-46 at North Platte St Pats.
Time now for the WTC Tournament and Kimball started out with a 47-30 win over Gordon-Rushville, but then lost 61-40 to that Bridgeport team they had beaten earlier, and lost again to Morrill 37-34, leaving them at 9-9 on the season. A trip to Pine Bluffs was disastrous, losing 85-48, but they then won 49-34 over Hemingford, and closed out the regular season with a 79-62 loss to Mitchell.
The Horns played good basketball in the sub-district tournament getting a big win over Morrill with a final of 57-41, and in the sub-district finals, their season ended with an exciting 45-43 loss to Bridgeport in overtime! This tallies up to 11 wins and 12 losses.
In the final team stats, Kimball scored 1,139 points and averaged 49.5 per game while allowing 1,098 points and a 47.7 average. The Horns shot 40% on 2 point field goals attempted and 27% on 3 point tries hitting 136 of 503 attempts. They struggled at the foul line shooting 54% and converting 157 of 290 free throws.
They were a strong rebounding club averaging 31 a game, and they set a school record for blocks with 151 led by Beau Hanks with 85 for another school record as he averaged 3.7 blocks a game and the team 6.6. The Horns also averaged 9.3 steals and charted 214 for the season. They also did a good job dishing the ball with 227 assists and an average of 12 a game. Too many turnovers with 356 and 15 plus a game.
Six seniors were the backbone of this year's team and they put up some good individual stats. Brendan Walker led the scoring with 223 points, averaging 9.7 a game. Sam Cajero had 205 points and an 8.9 average, Beau Hanks 186 and 8.1, Jacob Withrow 169 and 7.3, Brayden Tyan 149 and 8.8, and Austin Lulf 112 and 4.9. Sophomore Thomas Muldoon scored 60 points and junior Javon Coyle 32.
This year's team had good size and could score inside or from long range and their 3-point shooting shows that. Sam Cajero wrote his name into the top group kept for school records with his 293-pointers. Austin Lulf had 24 Jacob Withrow 21, Brendan Walker 23, Beau Hanks 17, Thomas Muldoon 12, Brayden Tyan 6, and Javon Coyle 5.
In the rebound department, Walker led with 153 followed by Hanks with 142, Tyan 96, Withrow 87, Lulf, 75, Cajero 74 and Muldoon 49. As mentioned, Hanks set a new record with his 85 blocks but Walker also did a good job with 25 and Tyan had 14. Sam Cajero led the Horns in steals with 49 while Withrow had 43, Walker 38, Lulf 26, Tyan 19, Muldoon 12, Hanks 9 and Cole Henton 8. Withrow wrote his name into the records kept with 57 assists. Cajero had 50, Hanks 42, Walker 42, Lulf 45, Tyan 32, and Muldoon 13.
Some of the top marks of the season which found their way into the top list of school records kept were fewest points allowed in a game of 21 against South Platte and 22 against Potter-Dix. Individual steals in a game with 7 by Sam Cajero against Potter-Dix, and also the 29 3-pointers Sam had in a season. Walker, Tyan and Hanks all tied with 13 rebounds in a game. Withrow had the 57 assists in a season.
Beau Hanks had an awesome season of blocking shots! He had 85 blocked shots this season and a career mark of 106. He had 8 blocks against Sutherland, 7 against Hemingford, 6 (twice), and 5 (6 times). The team also set a school record with 151 blocks for the season.
Beau Hanks and Sam Cajero were chosen for the WTC All-Conference Team and Brendan Walker and Brayden Tyan were given Honorable Mention in the SPVA Conference.
A final salute to all of the seniors who entertained the Kimball fans and represented their team and school in fine fashion!