Boys Basketball | February 22, 2017

Basketball Seniors Leave Hawks Near the Rim


Rory Preiss left everything on the floor each night as a Hawk.    (photo by Karen Holmes)

How good was this year’s Seniors for the Hawk Basketball team?   This will go down as the best Senior Class, as this group of players had to overcome years of bad karma in the Hawk Hoop World.

The ReSporter will base this article on the past two years, but some of these Seniors contributed to the Hawk basketball team for a 3 year period.

Tyler Williams and Rory Preiss were two of those mainstays that played well enough as Freshman to catch the eye of Head Coach Lucas Chapman.

Canyon Lake only had platitudes for that old saying, ‘ we will get them next year’.

Gerrit Wilkins making it look easy.

That saying can mean many things, but Canyon Lake’s round-ball teams had been pretty dismal since the school started back during the 2008-09 years.

There were some good players back in those days, but depth would be the main achilles heal for those start-up seasons. You can still see Christian Pena and Tanner Jones on many all-time Hawk categories which were compiled by just one year of numbers. 

“It’s always hard when your season ends,” Head Coach Lucas Chapman commented after the loss to Navarro.  “It is really tough when you have 8 seniors, and that is the last time we get to compete together, especially losing a tough game like that.”

Losing players will always be a tough time for players and Coaches that spend countless hours working out kinks for a chance to have fun and be successful.

Every year, but the last two, those times have come after another disappointing season where there would not be many skins (if any at all) that were put on the wall.

During this year’s group of games, Canyon Lake, had one of their best games when they were able to beat a Boerne team that always has a lot of quality players on their roster.

Jacob Ramirez with a soft hook during game with Navarro

This year was no different and CL was able to play a game from tip-off to final horn with energy which resulted in a game that all Hawk future teams can aspire too.

“I am really proud and appreciative all of our seniors though. They have really taken our program to new heights, and I believe they have set the tone for years to come,” Coach Chapman said with confidence.  “They really committed to the game of basketball, and I am very grateful for everything they have done. We will certainly miss them.”

That last phrase by Coach Chapman tells it all in one capsule for this group of players. 

Having the determination and then coupled with the younger players seeing what needs to be done to get to this realm was all on display throughout this season for Canyon Lake.

Jacob Ramirez had a solid year with points and finishing the season with the best percentage beyond the arc. CL could count on a, 7-13 points per game which gives a team a good starting point when each contest starts.

Heath McDonough came on as soon as December started as this work horse led the team in rebounds and on occasion some good scoring games. You would never see a player that would play out of his mind when pitted with those bigger players in the paint.

Tyler Williams was the complimentary player to McDonough as he would contribute in ways that might not be seen by ordinary fans. In the game with Navarro, Williams played above the rim and finished his career as the all-time best shot blocker, which was evident with his 4 blocks in his last hurrah.

Tyler Williams taking it to the hoop with Heath McDonough on the prowl

Geritt Wilkins is anther player that was successful for CL and his accolades, were many times, seen in the form of assists. Wilkins did not shoot a lot but he made some decisions on when and where to make his impact.

Charlie McIntosh came off the bench and had a fluidity about him that allowed a drive to the basket or a short jumper. Bench players have a much harder time of getting into a rhythm on many nights but this was another player that made that part of the game look easy.

Bennie Brownlee showed the ReSporter what every team player should be like. Brownlee started his Junior year on the Varsity but was moved down after bout 7 games. That has been a situation for countless players that would just chuck it and not put their all in their game. 

That attitude was never evident for Brownlee as he excelled when he went back to JV and then brought that same mind-set to the team for his final year, that can be admired by all for his tenacity on the hardwood.

The ‘rainbow’ three point shot will be missed for next year and the automatic free throw, swooshing through the basket, will certainly be missed by the Hawk Nation.

Ryner Martin came on as the season progressed while taking over more of the guard position while pumping in three pointers for this Hawk team. 

Always with a smile that would put a frown on opponents faces as Martin seldom had turnovers and was a good shot from the corner to the top of the key. On many occasions this Hawk would be the first player off the bench. A valuable component for CL and will truly be missed as Coaches piece together next year’s squad.

Rory Preiss was saved for the end of this article, as the ReSporter has enjoyed watching this player excel as he progressed these past 3 years. 

Brownlee bout to bring rain with his rainbow shot

Teams would game plan on how to stop Preiss, because once he stepped onto the floor Canyon Lake would be able to count on double digit scoring. Opponents will know this in scheming a defense to stop this offensive juggernaut.

Preiss would not just be categorized as an offensive player as he would leave the Hawks with the most steals and as his name is pronounced, a Press, that his height and speed allowed him to be all over the court (literally) in getting under the skin of many players.

The tail of the tape below for the list of Hawk players gives you an idea of how valuable Preiss was to the Hawk cause and what he brought to the gym each night. 

A strong group of players that will be remembered for starting a 2 year run in the playoffs and allowed the Hawk Nation to take pride in a great group of players. 

Thanks Seniors and you were Hawk Proud!!


                         Records Based for a Season 

     total points         #   year         rebounds           #    year 
 1st Rory Preiss         406  2017     2nd Heath McDonough  211    2017
                                       4th Rory Preiss      189    2016
                                       6th Tyler Williams   162    2017
     blocks               #   year     7th Rory Preiss      159    2015
 3rd Tyler Williams      39   2016     9th Rory Preiss      151    2017
 4th Tyler Williams      32   2017 
 7th Tyler Williams      26   2015
 9th Heath McDonough     18   2016

     3 pointers           #   year         free throws        #    year
 3rd Jacob Ramirez       45   2017     1st Rory Preiss       79    2017
 6th Jacob Ramirez       31   2016     7th Tyler Williams    53    2017
10th Rory Preiss         27   2017

     assists              #   year         steals             #    year
 3rd Gerrit Wilkins      64   2016     2nd Rory Preiss       46    2017
 4th Rory Preiss         60   2017     5th Rory Preiss       43    2016
 9th Gerrit Wilkins      46   2017
10th Jacob Ramirez       41   2017