Gibault honors legendary ’99 team


Nearly 20 years later, Gibault’s heartbreaking loss at the buzzer to Rock Falls in the 1999 Class A state basketball final remains a sore subject for some.

“To this day, I’ve never watched the tape of that game,” longtime Gibault head coach Dennis Rueter said of the 1999 Class A state final. “It’s tough to watch. Tough to think about.”

But a team is not defined by one game alone. It was celebrated Saturday night for a magical season that captivated an entire community.

Gibault inducted the 1999 boys hoops squad as the first full team into its Athletic Hall of Fame.

The 1999 Hawks finished with a record of 28-7 in what was a two-class system at that time, outscoring opponents by nearly 400 points with an 18-point average margin of victory.

“Yes, they had a few close games, but not many,” Gibault athletic director Jim Montgomery told those gathered Saturday night. “And when they came into the gymnasium, they were hard to miss.”

Read more about the historic season and some of its players in the January 30, 2019, issue.

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