KoMets fall in Section Tournament
The Kasson-Mantorville boys basketball team saw their season come to a close last week as they fell to Northfield in the opening round of the Section 1AAA tournament
on Mar. 6. The defeats ends a tough year for the KoMets as they finished the season with a 4-23 record (4-11 HVL), but the team’s improvement in several areas helps Nick Pocius’ team grow off the court.
“This season has been a journey with many lessons learned, experience gained, frustrations and major growth,” Pocius said. “Even though we didn’t get the number of wins we hoped for this season, it was a success for a number of reasons both on and off the courts.”
One of the KoMets’ areas of success was in the classroom as the team earned the Section 1AAA Academic Championship. The award continues K-M’s commitment to excellence not only in the field of play and in the classroom, meaning the honor was not lost on the team.
“These men are excellent students and work hard in the classroom,” Pocius said. “This award is a great honor that only eight of 64 teams in all of Class AA get this award.”
The KoMets also saw their statistics increase throughout the season. With increases in rebounding, points per possession, free throw percentage, field goal percentage and turnover margin in the final 13 games of the season, the KoMets improved on the court as the season went along, even if it didn’t show in the win column. “This is the continuous improvement we want and need to continue,” Pocius said. “The ability to continue to grow despite adversity is a demonstration of resiliency in action.”
Against the Raiders, the KoMets had a tough draw against the second-seeded team in Section 1AAA. Northfield would flex its muscle early not only in the paint, but with some hot shooting from the floor including 10-for-21 from beyond the arc. That level of efficiency put K-M in an early hole and sent them to the locker room in a 39-14 hole at the half.
“We felt like we had a solid game plan against Northfield,” Pocius said. “We were prepared for them to bring pressure and use their physicality. Northfield came out and shot the ball very well and in watching film, some of these shots were contested and simply good shots.”
Despite the hole, the KoMets fought hard to end the season on a strong note. While the senior leadership of Logan Bigelow, Jonathan Burch and Devin Knudson will be missed, they were able to put together a solid final effort as Bigelow led the team with eight points and seven rebounds. In the end the Raiders were too much in a 70-39 victory.
“It was a tough way to end the season,” Pocuis said. We had a nice talk after the game on how proud we are of these guys. This season has been full of ups and downs. The guys have persevered and we let them know that we hope they can find the important lessons that seasons like this can teach for life. These seasons help build resilency, responsibility and patience. All traits are needed in life beyond basketball. It is hoped these lessons are realized, valued and taken with them for the foreseeable future."