Hixon joins 1,000-point club

Riley Hixon2
The Florence Bobcats Varsity basketball team, left to right, back: Kaden Schuls, Tyler Novak, Preston Stotlz, Bryan Bomberg, Braden Boettcher, Blake McLain, Paul Millan, Evan Johnson, William Kelley; front: Dom DeMuri, Patrick Milan, Riley Hixon, Kris Johnson
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Riley Hixon, a senior at Florence High School joined an elite and accomplished group when he hit his 1,000 point on March 3, 2020 against rival, the Niagara Badgers in the opening rounds of WIAA tournament play. The Bobcats won 72-25.

Entering the contest Hixon needed 5 points to join the 1,000-point club, which includes his mom, Chris Witynski, who scored 1,195 points in her career.

“I’m thrilled to share this mother/son duo, he’s not just a great basketball player. I love how the young kids look up to him. Melts my heart. I always love that he has his mama’s baseline shot, which I learned from Kris Osterberg. He and I worked on that shot in the summer,” said Witysnki.

As freshmen, Riley got moved up to Varsity. Although he did not see the floor much, it paved the way and got him acclimated to what was ahead of him the following year, where he started every varsity contest the next year as a sophomore and averaged 18.6 points per contest. A season high of 36 points came in a non-conference game against Niagara that season.

“Personally, I remember Riley’s 30-point outing against Goodman/Pembine more vividly. It was our WIAA opening round game and with a broken hand (suffered late in the first half of that game and we did not know until two days later) he hit some timely three-point shots to ice the game for us,” said Bomberg.

Hixon was not used to being that go-to type player earlier in his career. It took his head coach, Bryan Bomberg to challenge Hixon to start shooting the basketball more, and he did.

“He is so quick in the full court with the ball in his hands. I honestly do not think I’ve ever coached someone so fast in transition with the ball. Riley can light up a box score pretty quickly, especially when he is on a hot streak. Since I challenged him to be a shooter – he’s hit the ground running and not looked back,” said Bomberg.

“I am proud of Riley. I know this has been something he wanted and to join his mom in the 1,000-point club really is a special and neat thing for them to share. Firsthand I know how much both of them love the game of basketball,” said Bomberg.

“When I hit the 1,000th point, I was so pumped! I was trying to attempt a dunk but still was able to make the basket. I felt accomplished because not many people make it to this milestone. I was smiling while I was on the free throw thinking to myself that I did it. It was a great atmosphere to be in as everyone was cheering for me. It feels amazing how my mom and I have succeeded to past 1,000 points. As a kid, I had an object which has my mom’s name and the amount of points she has scored. I would always joke with her and say I’m going to be in 1,000 point just like you. It feels great to join my mom in the 1,000-point club,” said Hixon.

“I am excited that I have a teammate to join me in the history books at Florence,” said Kaden Schuls. “He and I are hoping to keep making history and extending our season as long as we can.”

Currently sitting at 1,008 points, Hixon joins twelve other stand outs from Florence High School. Kari Flunker; 1,951, Jaclynn Kriegl; 1,498, DeAnna DeMuri; 1,447, Chris Witynski; 1,195, Patty Smith; 1,146, Bill Counter; 1,340, Kaden Schuls: 1,136 (current), Dion Wolosyn; 1,123, John Kriegl; 1,082, Joe Kriegl, 1,038 and Josh Enders; 1,014.

 

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