Cosumnes River College men’s basketball brought its season to an end with a loss to Santa Rosa Junior College in the third round of the Northern California regional playoffs on Feb. 29.
This is the second straight year the Hawks lost in the third round of the regional playoffs. They finished with an 18-13 record.
“We started off really well. Then all of a sudden we couldn’t buy a basket,” head coach James Giacomazzi said about the playoff loss. “They were the better team that day.”
Although the Hawks fell short of its state championship goal, the team was able to play competitive basketball all year, beating five ranked teams.
The Hawks could have easily won a handful of game this season. Six of the team’s 13 losses came by five points or less, including two losses in overtime.
“We could have easily been a 20-win team,” Giacomazzi said. “However we were a little snake-bit in those games.”
Out of the Hawks’ 18 wins this season, only seven came against teams in its Big 8 conference. Different colleges have won the conference championship in the last three years, proving that the conference is competitive.
Sophomore forwards Tony Gill and James Tillman played well all season, and were named to the First Team All Big 8 Conference, with Gill also being named to the First Team All-State.
“That definitely means a lot,” Gill said. “Just to be recognized with those other players is definitely an honor and something I’m very grateful and thankful for.”
Sophomore forward Ryan Salmonson, who has only been playing basketball since his freshman year in high school, received an honorable mention for the All Big 8 Team.
“It’s huge,” Salmonson said. “To come this far, it shows that all my hard work is paying off.”
While the season held many memorable moments, both Giacomazzi and Gill said that beating Santa Rosa on their home court was the most memorable.
Santa Rosa had been undefeated in conference play until the Hawks beat them 90-64 on Feb. 16.
The Hawks look to rebuild in the offseason, as only two freshmen will return next year.
“We are going to go in and try to get ourselves ready to win a Big 8 Conference Championship,” Giacomazzi said.