Boys' state tournament notebook: North Linn wins 1A consolation to finish 27-1

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DES MOINES — Here’s the thing about these North Linn Lynx. They’re all back.

How utterly depressing that must be to the rest of the Tri-Rivers Conference. To the rest of Class 1A.

North Linn capped the best season in school history Friday morning with a 76-66 win over Remsen St. Mary’s in the 1A boys’ state basketball tournament consolation game. Jake Hilmer led the Lynx (27-1) with 31 points, including 15-for-15 shooting from the free-throw line.

Ryan Miller added 24 points. Consolation games are like kissing your sister, as the saying goes, but finishing in third place is a ton better than finishing fourth.

“Like Coach said to us in the locker room, we’re one of two teams (in our class) that could go out with a win,” Miller said. “That’s not what we wanted, wasn’t our goal. But third place is still pretty good.”

North Linn had 11 players on its roster this season but none of them were seniors. Four were sophomores and two were freshmen.

Every single point, every single rebound, every single assist returns in 2017-18. Keep in mind, too, North Linn whacked opponents by over 40 points per game this season.

“We’ve just got to come back stronger,” said junior center Adam Waskow. “Get better next year and get back down here.”

Miller, a junior, averaged 19 points per game this season, surpassing 1,000 points for his career. Sophomore David Seber averaged 15.8 points a game and led the Lynx in 3-pointers.

Waskow and sophomore Trevor Boge were the interior guys for an otherwise smaller club. Sophomore Carter Johnson came off the bench and provided good minutes at the state tournament.

Then there’s sophomore point guard Hilmer. He’s one of the finest players in Eastern Iowa, so smart and slick with the basketball.

He finished this season as North Linn’s leading scorer, posting 276 assists, the third-highest single-season mark in state history. He has 480 assists in his career, with two seasons remaining.

The state record for career assists is 784. Barring injury, Hilmer will shatter that mark.

And this group will shatter all kinds of school records.

“You think we’re good, and we are,” said Co-Coach Mike Hilmer. “But we have a lot of room for improvement. We’re going to be a lot better ballclub next year, just as any team is that is a year older.”

That’s scary.


— The 2017 IHSAA Hall of Fame class includes former Elkader Central, Mid-Prairie and Iowa City High Coach Don Showalter. He works now for USA Basketball in Colorado. Among the eight players to be inducted is former Cedar Rapids Regis prep Adam Spanich. The others are Jason Huff (Don Bosco), Chris Danner (Johnston), Brandon Woudstra (Orange City Unity Christian), Rob Kampman (Forest City), Carlton Reed (Waterloo East), Adam Haluska (Carroll) and Brooks McKowen (Wapsie Valley.

— Carroll Kuemper won Friday afternoon’s Class 2A consolation game, 73-53, over Camanche. Kuemper center Matt Dentlinger concluded a fine career with a double-double of 23 points and 16 rebounds. Kuemper finished 24-3, Camanche 23-4. The Indians were led by freshman Cameron Soenksen’s 16 points.



REMSEN ST. MARY’S (66): Colin Schroeder 1-2 5-8 7, R.J. Staab 0-5 0-0 0, Jacob Wesselman 6-13 1-2 19, Brody Ricke 1-3 0-0 2, Nicholas Ruden 9-16 2-3 22, Mitchell Schiltz 1-2 0-0 3, Carter Kuchel 4-6 0-2 11, Brady Portz 0-0 0-0 0, Spencer Schorg 0-0 0-0 0, Brett Galles 0-0 0-0 0, Jacob Loutsch 0-0 0-0 0, Derrick Schorg 1-1 0-0 2, Zach Ruden 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 23-48 8-15 66.

NORTH LINN (76): Jake Hilmer 8-16 15-15 31, David Seber 2-5 1-1 5, Ryan Miller 9-14 1-2 24, Trevor Boge 3-3 1-1 7, Adam Waskow 0-2 1-2 1, Bradley Pflughaupt 0-0 1-2 1, Austin Miller 0-0 0-0 0, Mitchell Rawson 0-0 0-0 0, Josh Smith 0-0 0-0 0, Sean Boardman 0-0 0-0 0, Carter Johnson 1-2 5-6 7. Totals 23-42 25-29 76.

Halftime — Remsen St. Mary’s 33, North Linn 32. 3-point goals — Remsen St. Mary’s 12-26 (Staab 0-3, Wesselman 6-11, N. Ruden 2-3, Kuchel 3-4), North Linn 5-13 (Hilmer 0-4, Seber 0-2, R. Miller 5-7). Rebounds — Remsen St. Mary’s 23 (N. Ruden 7), North Linn 25 (Johnson 10). Total fouls — Remsen St. Mary’s 24, North Linn 16. Fouled out — None. Assists — Remsen St. Mary’s 16 (Ricke 5), North Linn 8 (Hilmer 6). Turnovers — Remsen St. Mary’s 13, North Linn 11.

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