Friday, August 18, 2017
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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Metro Sports Report

This wasn't your mother's brand of basketball

Until the 1970s, there were no girls basketball teams in the Metro area. When basketball was introduced here, it was the 6-on-6, two-court variety.

Forwards played offense, guards played defense and neither were allowed to cross half court. A girl could dribble no more than twice. Defenders touching the ball in the offensive player’s hand were called for a foul.

My, how things have changed.


Linn-Mar boys still No. 1

Undefeated Linn-Mar is still the No. 1 Class 4A boys basketball team in the state according to the Associated Press rankings released Monday.

Two other Metro teams also are ranked. Kennedy dropped one spot to fifth in this week's poll and Jefferson advanced two spots to No. 6.

Washington was among the teams receiving votes.

Linn-Mar (13-0) received all 13 first-place votes. Ankeny (11-1) moved up one spot to No. 2 and Cedar Falls (9-2) jumped four spots to third. Sioux City East fell three spots to fourth, followed by Kennedy and Jefferson.

The top-ranked teams in the other classes are Sioux City Heelan (13-0) in 3A, Hull Western Christian (13-1) in 2A and Iowa Mennonite (13-0) in 1A.


Kiah Stokes leads Metro by wide margins

When it comes to Metro girls basketball, there's Kiah Stokes and there's everybody else.

Stokes leads the Metro in scoring, rebounding, blocked shots and field goal percentage by wide margins in all four categories.

The Linn-Mar All-American is averaging 24.3 points, 14.9 rebounds, 4.8 blocks and hitting 70.8 percent of her shots as she continues to have a stellar senior campaign.

Two of her teammates top the Metro charts as well, with Kailee Karr leading in assists (62) and Jenna Eells leading in 3-pointers (31).

Annie Dale of Xavier leads the Metro in steals (48) and Courtney Strait of Kennedy leads in free throw shooting (84.5%).

The leaders are based on statistics posted by the IGHSAU through Sunday.


Uthoff, Paige, Oglesby top Metro stats

Jarrod Uthoff, Marcus Paige and Josh Oglesby lead Metro basketball players in multiple categories this week.

Uthoff, the Jefferson star who has signed with Wisconsin, tops the Metro in scoring (26.3 ppg), rebounding (9.9) and blocked shots (36).

Paige, the Linn-Mar star who has committed to North Carolina, leads the Metro in steals (48) and is tied with Wes Washpun of Washington for most assists (53).

Oglesby, the Washington star who has signed with Iowa, paces the Metro in most 3-pointers (36) and best free throw shooting (90.3%).

Ian McBrayer of Linn-Mar leads the Metro in field goal percentage (67.1%).

The Metro leaders are based on statistics filed with the Iowa High School Athletic Association through Sunday.


New role for Stokes as Lions top Ballard

Kiah Stokes and Ballard star Taylor Greenfield are planning a vacation to the Dominican Republic this spring, but the two friends did not share any travel stories Saturday.

In fact, Stokes made life difficult for Greenfield in the 7th Annual Rivalry Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Center.

Stokes abandoned her normal defensive post near the basket and guarded Greenfield on the perimeter, an unusual and somewhat uncomfortable spot for the 6-foot-3 center from Linn-Mar. She handled her new assignment superbly.

Stokes stopped Greenfield when it counted to help Linn-Mar defeat Ballard, 50-40, in a battle of highly ranked teams.

Greenfield, a 6-foot-2 guard, scored 22 points, but did little damage while Stokes was guarding her in the second half. Stokes, a 6-foot-3 center, turned the game around with her defensive effort against the Ballard star.


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