Prep Basketball

Cedar Rapids Prairie gets past Washington, seeks top-2 seed in its Class 4A substate

CEDAR RAPIDS — The next couple of weeks for Cedar Rapids Prairie’s boys’ basketball team is big. Like potentially determine-your-postseason-fate big.

The Hawks pulled away in the fourth quarter Friday night to win at Cedar Rapids Washington, 73-60. That moved their record to 10-3.

The Iowa High School Athletic Association released Class 4A substates earlier in the day, and Prairie is in a substate that appears winnable. Top-ranked North Scott is there, along with Cedar Rapids Jefferson, Dubuque Hempstead, Pleasant Valley and winless Muscatine.

North Scott and Hempstead own five-point wins over the Hawks. Which brings back the importance of the next two weeks.

Coaches will seed each substate February 6, with each game up to that point used to determine those seeds. The top two seeds get first-round byes, and that is what Prairie wants.

“These games before February 6 are so key to build your resume,” said Prairie Coach Jeremy Rickertsen.

“I think it’s the toughest substate there is,” said Prairie’s Kris Murray. “Teams like Jefferson, Hempstead, Pleasant Valley. We really want another shot at North Scott.”

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Murray scored a game-high 25 points, with twin brother, Keegan, adding 17 and seven blocked shots. For some reason, the Murrays — whose father, Kenyon, played for Iowa — don’t have any Division I scholarship offers, despite being 6-foot-8 shooters who will continue to improve as they mature physically.

Prairie made 17 of its 24 second-half field goals, a product of continually using its size to get to the rim.

“We were settling for quick shots,” Rickertsen said. “We talked at halftime about being a little more deliberate. Let things work and open up.”

Washington (6-8) played from behind most of the night but was within one point in the third quarter. Jamar Thurmon led the Warriors with 17 points.

Wash has top-10 teams in its substate in Dubuque Senior and Bettendorf, with Coach Justin Decker hoping his team can get the 3-seed. The Warriors play Cedar Rapids Kennedy in a weather makeup game Saturday.

“We were close, then it just seemed like it was and-one, and-one for (Prairie),” Decker said. “They just lived in the paint in the fourth quarter.”

AT CEDAR RAPIDS WASHINGTON

C.R. PRAIRIE (73): Harrison Cook 3-3 2-2 8, Gabe Burkle 3-7 0-2 6, Keegan Murray 7-17 3-5 17, Kris Murray 8-12 7-9 25, Logan Burg 4-5 1-1 9, Max Lampe 2-2 0-0 5, Caleb Miller 0-0 0-0 0, Jonathan Mullins 1-2 0-0 3. Totals 28-47 13-19 73.

C.R. WASHINGTON (60): Chandlir Haug 3-8 2-2 8, Mick McCurry 3-13 1-2 7, Joe McKinstry 0-2 0-0 0, Imanuel Rowland 2-4 0-0 6, Ross Snitker 3-5 2-2 10, Jamar Thurmon 5-11 7-9 17, Riley Pankey 1-5 0-0 2, Kaden Bowie 0-1 0-0 0, Brayden Wright 4-8 0-0 10. Totals 21-57 12-15 60.

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Halftime — Prairie 30, Washington 25. 3-point goals — Prairie 4-10 (Ke. Murray 0-4, Kr. Murray 2-3, Lampe 1-1, Mullins 1-2), Washington 6-16 (McCurry 0-4, Rowland 2-2, Snitker 2-3, Thurmon 0-1, Pankey 0-2, Wright 2-4). Rebounds — Prairie 32 (Cook, Kr. Murray 8), Washington 27 (Snitker, McCurry 5). Total fouls — Prairie 12, Washington 12. Fouled out — None. Turnovers — Prairie 9, Washington 6.

l Comments: (319) 398-8259; jeff.johnson@thegazette.com

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