Prep Basketball

Iowa City High claims MVC showdown in a rout at Cedar Rapids Prairie

Little Hawks end Prairie's 15-game win streak behind Aubrey Joens' 32 points

CEDAR RAPIDS — A second-quarter explosion by Aubrey Joens gave Iowa City High some separation. Then the Little Hawks’ defense made it stick.

Class 5A top-ranked City High overwhelmed No. 4 Cedar Rapids Prairie in the middle two quarters and moved into sole possession of the MVC Mississippi Division lead with a 62-36 girls’ basketball rout Friday night at Prairie High School.

“I couldn’t be more pleased,” City Coach Bill McTaggart said. “The last five minutes weren’t very good, but up to then, that’s the best we’ve played all season.”

Joens, a junior who will eventually follow older sister Ashley Joens to Iowa State, scored 15 on her game-high 32 points in the second quarter.

She hit 7 of 9 shots from 3-point range.

“My teammates were looking to get me the ball; they knew I was hot,” Joens said. “We were taking smart shots.”

City High (16-2 overall, 12-1 MVC) controls its own destiny in a tightly bunched Mississippi Division. The Little Hawks still face Cedar Falls (17-1, 11-1) and Cedar Rapids Washington (15-3, 11-2) — both at home — Monday and Wednesday.

Prairie (16-3, 11-2) saw its 15-game winning streak come to a crashing end.

“(City) is a good team,” Hawks Coach Josh Bentley said. “(Nkumu) controlled the game really well, and Joens ... we couldn’t stop her.”

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The game was tied, 9-9, after one quarter, then Joens heated up. Her bank shot with 5:32 left in the second quarter put the Little Hawks in front, 13-11, and they kept building the advantage from there. She hit three long shots in the remainder of the quarter, and City enjoyed a 27-18 halftime lead.

The Little Hawks weren’t done yet. Not even close. They delivered an 11-0 blow to start the second half, and led by 30 points on Nkumu’s basket with 7:35 left.

City won the third quarter by a 26-7 margin.

“We had so much intensity, an urge to win the game,” Nkumu said. “We really wanted to pinch on them defensively, and block their driving lanes.”

Ella Cook and Paige Rocca added nine points apiece for the winners, and Nkumu scored eight. Cook grabbed 10 rebounds, Nkumu and Rocca distributed five assists apiece, and Joens collected five steals.

Sarah Schmitt and Sidney McCrea scored 12 points apiece for Prairie, with McCrea grabbing eight boards.

Prairie concludes its regular season Saturday at Waterloo East.

IOWA CITY HIGH 62, CEDAR RAPIDS PRAIRIE 36

At C.R. Prairie

IOWA CITY HIGH (62): Rose Nkumu 4-15 0-2 8, Eviyon Richardson 2-7 0-0 4, Ella Cook 4-6 0-0 9, Paige Rocca 3-8 3-3 9, Aubrey Joens 11-18 3-3 32, Andie Westlake 0-0 0-0 0, CeCe Kelly-Harvey 0-0 0-0 0, Kacie Earl 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 24-54 6-8 62.

C.R. PRAIRIE (36): Sarah Schmitt 4-12 2-3 12, Sidney McCrea 6-14 0-0 12, Mallory McDermott 2-9 2-2 6, Rachael Kilpatrick 1-1 0-0 2, Quinn Deahl 1-2 0-0 2, Makenna Moenk 0-3 0-0 0, Jenna Leggat 0-0 0-0 0, Hailey Cooper 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 15-42 4-5 36.

Halftime: City 27, Prairie 18. 3-point goals: City 8-18 (Nkumu 0-2, Richardson 0-2, Cook 1-1, Rocca 0-4, Joens 7-9), Prairie 2-14 (Schmitt 2-5, McCrea 0-4, McDermott 0-4, Moenk 0-1). Team fouls: City 10, Prairie 6. Fouled out: none. Rebounds: City 34 (Cook 10), Prairie 24 (McCrea 8). Assists: City 15 (Nkumu, Rocca 5), Prairie 6 (Schmitt, McCrea 2). Steals: City 11 (Joens 5), Prairie 4 (Moenk, Leggat 2). Turnovers: City 7, Prairie 12.

l Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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