Eastern Iowa athletes sign on dotted line

Lots of basketball signings on Wednesday

Marion’s Chloe Rice puts up a shot next to Pella’s Emily Holterhaus during the a Class 4A state semifinal game in Des Moines in March. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
Marion’s Chloe Rice puts up a shot next to Pella’s Emily Holterhaus during the a Class 4A state semifinal game in Des Moines in March. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

Several Gazette-area athletes signed national letters of intent on Wednesday, including Marion’s Chloe Rice, who will continue her basketball career at Saint Louis University.

Classmate Caitlyn Smith signed with the Drake volleyball team.

Linn-Mar’s signees included Payton Wensel (track at Iowa), and Ally Johnson (softball) and Carly Spies (volleyball), both with UNI.

Iowa City West’s Logan Cook signed with the Iowa women’s basketball team, and classmate Ruby Martin made her commitment to swim at Arizona State official. Rachel Saunders (Creighton, women’s basketball) and Colby Greene (Southeast Missouri State, volleyball) were among West’s eight signees Wednesday.

City High’s Ashley Joens was among three to sign letters with the Iowa State women’s basketball program.

“Ashley is a scorer and she can fill up a stat sheet in a variety of ways,” ISU Coach Bill Fennelly said. “Her versatility and passion for the game were things that make her a great fit for our program. Ashley is the best kid in Iowa in the 2018 class and that is always huge for all of us at Iowa State.”

Cedar Rapids Washington’s Brady Bunten signed to play baseball at Southern Illinois.

Center Point-Urbana’s Allie Wooldridge signed with the Drake women’s basketball program.

“Allie is a versatile inside-and-out player with great court vision who can play all five positions,” Coach Jennie Baranczyk said. “She is another multisport athlete who comes from an athletic family and she has been to multiple state tournaments in basketball and soccer.”

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Springville’s Rylee Menster and Mikaya Nachazel signed basketball letters with Minnesota State-Mankato.

“Mikayla is a high energy player and a great competitor,” Mavericks Coach Emilee Thiesse said. “She has great versatility in the forward position, and her strength and athleticism will bring a great presence in the paint. She has such a huge upside and we can’t wait to see her impact in our program.”

Menster, she said, is a “huge asset to our back court.

“She is a phenomenal athlete and that makes her such a dynamic player on both ends of the court. She is so explosive and can lock players down defensively, while also using that burst to lead the break and attack in transition.”

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Editor's note: Mike Winker, 53. is the former activities director at Cedar Rapids Xavier High School. He now is in his second year as a lecturer at the University of Iowa. He teaches in the Sport and Recreation Management Program, ...

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