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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Xavier High School - Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Saints drop season finale

A chance to build some momentum for the substate boys basketball tournament slipped out of Xavier's grasp Thursday night.

Sophomore Josh Weeber scored 19 points and Dubuque Senior snapped a four-game losing streak by beating the Saints, 55-51, in the regular season finale for Xavier.  The Saints (6-15, 5-11 Mississippi Valley Conference) play at Ottumwa in a substate first round game Monday.

Senior (10-10, 7-8) has a makeup game Saturday at home against Iowa City West. The Rams are the No. 2 seed in their substate and will start tournament play Feb. 25 against the winner of Cedar Rapids Washington and Clinton.

Weeber is the third leading scorer in the MVC, averaging 21.4 points per game. Kyle Haber chipped in with 17 points.  Junior Connor Grant scored eight points, nailing six free throws in the intense defensive contest.

Xavier actually started strong with an initial 4-1 lead that ballooned to 12-5 at the quarter.  But Senior outscored the Saints 26-9 in the second frame to take control. 

Two double figure scorers led Xavier on Senior Night with senior Mitch McLaughlin nailing 11 points and senior Ryan Mains had 10.  Nine Saints scored.

Last Updated on Friday, 18 February 2011 01:25



Saints rout Waterloo East boys

As the postseason nears, the Xavier boys are playing some of their best basketball. The Saints posted back-to-back wins for only the second time this season in a 74-51 rout of Waterloo East Tuesday night at Ron Thillen Gymnasium.

The Saints were able to find their groove early with senior center Ryan Mains dominating in the paint and scoring eight points in the first quarter en route to a game high 17 points.

"Mains, down low, got off to a really fast start," senior Mitch McLaughlin said. "It was really good to have an inside presence. After that we just kind of fed off of him when they started collapsing on him."

McLaughlin was one of the benefactors of that, leading the Saints from the outside with 14 points, including four 3-pointers. Waterloo East was led by senior Demetre Van Arsdale with 12 points.

With Mains going to work in the paint and McLaughlin leading the 3-point barrage, the Saints were able to open up a comfortable lead and went into the half up 37-22.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 16 February 2011 03:29



Chicchelly cops district mat title

EPWORTH -- They held a demolition derby at Western Dubuque High School Saturday and called it a Class 3A district wrestling tournament.

Linn-Mar survived a day of bloody noses to trim Prairie, 223-207.5, for the district title on a day that had a little of something for everyone.

A little happiness, a little sadness.

Prairie and Kennedy crowned four individual champions apiece, Linn-Mar captured three titles and Xavier notched one as Metro wrestlers nabbed 12 of the 14 individual crowns.

On the unhappy side, quality individuals like Prairie 103-pounder Trey Blaha, Xavier 171-pounder Peter Ickes and Linn-Mar 189-pounder Mark Atwater did not qualify for the state tournament at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines Feb. 17-19.

"It's tough to see a good kid not be able to reach their dreams," Linn-Mar Coach Doug Streicher remarked.

The top-2 finishers at each weight class qualified for the state tournament. Blaha and Atwater both finished third, as did other talented wrestlers.

Chris Walters (119), Zach Witte (145), Cameron Rathje (152) and Andrew Netolicky (189) earned district titles for Prairie.

Luke Kremer (135), Ryan Rodriguez (140), Jordan Baskerville (160) and Ryan "Living Dangerously" Sheldon (171) captured individual crowns for Kennedy.

Alijah Jeffery (103), Joel Northrup (112) and A.J. Garcia (215) climbed the victory stand for Linn-Mar. Braxton Chicchelly (130) finished first for Xavier.



Saints' Mattke future PG poster material?

For just more than half his life, Cedar Rapids Xavier junior Mack Mattke has looked around at quite an assortment of portraits of many of the best baseball players the state of Iowa has produced over the past decade.

The poster-sized photos are displayed on the walls of Perfect Game USA, a baseball scouting and recruiting service located on Rockford Road SW, just across the street from the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena and just down the street from Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium.

Just inside the door of the batting cage area at PG, there is one long banner that features the photos of Iowa City High’s Jon Gilmore, West Delaware’s B.J. Hermsen, Marshalltown’s Jeff Clement and Des Moines area standouts Jeremy Hellickson and Matt Macri, among others.

All of those players are in the professional ranks at some level right now, and all participated at Perfect Game events.

But please excuse Mattke if he pays special attention to the portrait of Ryan Sweeney, a 2003 Xavier grad who was a second-round MLB Draft pick and is now an outfielder with the Oakland Athletics. There also is a photo of Travis Sweet, a 2004 Xavier grad who was also drafted professionally and played collegiately at the University of Iowa.

Last Updated on Monday, 14 February 2011 18:44



Saints girls stump Prairie

It wasn't always pretty, but Xavier got the job done at Prairie, beating the Hawks, 56-37, on Friday in the regular season finale.

Xavier was led by senior Alex Saxen, who notched 19 points, including three 3-pointers. Junior Emily Walvoord chipped in 10 points for the Saints.

Freshman Madison Dellamuth topped Prairie with 10 points, and sophomore Alisa Weiland added eight points.

Prairie threw an unexpected wrinkle at the Saints by opening up the game playing zone defense for the first few minutes. But the Saints didn't miss a beat, stretching out the defense by hitting five 3-pointers to open up a 20-10 first-quarter advantage.

The Saints maintained a double-digit lead the rest of the way.

"I don't like the zone, personally. We never play it, but we wanted to make sure that we clamped down on their big girls," Coach Steve Doser said.

"Their posts are very physical, (Krissi) Tow especially. We wanted to keep them out of it.

"But then, of course, Saxen hits threes. We just wanted to change things up a little bit."

Last Updated on Monday, 14 February 2011 18:50



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