Monday, October 24, 2016
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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Xavier High School - Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Saints host Assumption in 3A opener

The Xavier Saints will host Davenport Assumption in the opening round of the Class 3A football playoffs this Friday at 7 p.m. at Saints Field.

The Iowa High School Athletic Association posted all the brackets on its website Saturday morning following the end of the regular season Friday night.

Xavier finished the regular season at 9-0 overall and captured the District 3 title with a 7-0 mark. Assumption finished 7-2 overall and went 6-1 in District 4 as the district runner-up.

The Saints and Knights did not have any common opponents this season. Xavier won at Davenport Assumption, 30-6, in 2014 and beat Assumption again last year, 14-7, at Saints Field.

The entire bracket for the Class 3A playoffs has been pre-determined this season, unlike recent years when the IHSAA determined opponents on a round-by-round basis.

If the Saints defeat Davenport Assumption, they will host West Delaware (8-1) or Waverly-Shell Rock (6-3) in the quarterfinals on Friday, Nov. 4 at Saints Field, according to the IHSAA rules for determining second-round hosts.

Xavier was placed on the same side of the 16-team bracket with Pella, which means the second-ranked Saints would meet the top-ranked Dutch in the semifinals on Thursday, Nov. 10 in the UNI-Dome if they both get that far.



Saints march into playoffs at 9-0

TAMA - Xavier Coach Duane Schulte spotted several of his players sneaking up from behind with a bucket of ice water Friday night and tried to escape, but it was too late.

Schulte got drenched in the final minute of Xavier's 48-12 victory over South Tama that gave the Saints a perfect 9-0 record for the regular season.

For good measure, the head coach got doused again a short time later with another bucket.

"Whenever there's an undefeated regular season, my dad gets a little bath," explained quarterback Bryce Schulte, one of the perpetrators. "Reggie's group did it (in 2012). And we did it last year at Marion, too. It was pretty fun."

This is the fourth undefeated regular season in school history. It happened the first time in 2006, when the Saints marched all the way to Class 4A state title. It happened in 2012 with Reggie Schulte at quarterback on the way to another trip to the Class 4A finals, and now it's happened two straight years in Class 3A.

Coach Schulte would gladly take a cold bath in public every year in salute to a perfect regular season.

"I think it's great for our kids and our program," he said. "It's hard to win one game on a Friday night, let alone nine. I'm proud of our coaches and our players."

Bryce Schulte passed for three touchdowns and tied his brother Reggie's school record for career completions with 265. Maliki Wilson scored three times and began the festivities with an 85-yard touchdown on the opening kickoff.



Xavier runners win state qualifier

DECORAH - The Xavier boys cross country team nipped Decorah for top honors at the Class 3A state qualifier in Decorah Thursday.

The Saints edged the Vikings, 62-64, in the 13-team meet.

Xavier earned a spot in the state cross country meet in Fort Dodge next Saturday.

Jonathan Lansing placed fourth for the Saints in 16 minutes, 53 seconds. Then came a tightly-packed trio of John Pape in 10th (17:12), Joe Scieszinski in 12th (17:13) and Nolan Pithan in 13th (17:13). Mahlon Steepleton finished 23rd for the Saints (17:36).

The Xavier girls finished sixth in their race.


1. Xavier 62, 2. Decorah 64, 3. Wahlert 97, 4. Crestwood 138, 5. Waverly-Shell Rock 156, 6. Vinton-Shellsburg 160, 7. Charles City 180, 8. Benton Community 210, 9. Center Point-Urbana 247, 10. Iowa Falls-AGWSR 258, 11. Union 295, 12. Independence 307, 13. West Delaware 336.



Burns has been a big catch for Saints

Brett Burns has been a secret weapon for the Xavier football team for most of the season, but the secret is out now.

Burns, a lanky tight end, has caught four touchdown passes in the last five games for the Saints and is tied for the team lead with those four TD grabs.

Burns did not catch a single pass for Xavier last year as a junior. And he did not catch any touchdown passes in the first three games this season, but he's become a big threat for the Saints now.

Xavier (8-0, 6-0) will finish the regular season at South Tama on Friday night, then steam into the Class 3A playoffs with a home game next Friday night, Oct. 28.

Burns was a wide receiver for the Saints last year, but he moved to tight end this season and has eight catches for 108 yards. He's tied with Nolan Butkowski and Quinn Schulte with his four TD passes from quarterback Bryce Schulte.

When Coach Duane Schulte sends in the plays, he generally gives Bryce the option of finding an open receiver and throwing the ball to him, rather than picking a receiver in advance.

"Coach Schulte has been calling good plays that get us in areas where we can succeed," Burns said Tuesday before practice. "I'm just glad that Bryce has some trust in me that he's throwing me the ball."



Saints win consolation title in MVC tourney

The Xavier Saints topped Jefferson, 25-16, 25-23, to win the title in the consolation bracket of the Mississippi Valley Conference volleyball tournament Saturday at Kennedy.

The Saints compiled a 1-2 record in pool play and failed to reach the championship playoffs. The Saints lost to Cedar Falls, 21-11, 20-22, 15-8, and to Prairie, 21-11, 21-18, in pool play, and defeated Waterloo West, 21-9, 15-21, 15-5.

Xavier beat Waterloo East in the consolation semifinals, 25-18, 25-17, before beating the J-Hawks.

Linn-Mar defeated Dubuque Wahlert for the MVC title.

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