Prep Basketball

Iowa City West, Washington, Kennedy in the same club: Inconsistent, and dangerous

Kennedy-West, Washington-Ottumwa battles highlight 5A girls' basketball first-round matchups

Iowa City West's Audrey Koch (23) eyes a rebound against Iowa City High last season. West hosts Cedar Rapids Kennedy in
Iowa City West’s Audrey Koch (23) eyes a rebound against Iowa City High last season. West hosts Cedar Rapids Kennedy in a Class 5A regional-quarterfinal girls’ basketball game at 7 p.m. Wednesday. (The Gazette)

They’re inconsistent, and they’re dangerous.

That’s the identity of some of the .500-ish Class 5A girls’ basketball teams in the area.

“There are some teams that will go out and have a really good game, then they’ll go out and lay an egg,” Iowa City West Coach B.J. Mayer said. “We’re one of those teams.”

You can put Cedar Rapids Washington in that basket, too. And Cedar Rapids Kennedy. Those teams all open Class 5A regionals Wednesday.

“Those are the trials of playing a lot of young kids,” Washington Coach Chris James said. “They’re going to be inconsistent at times.”

Washington (10-11) travels to Ottumwa (12-9) for a 5A regional quarterfinal. West (12-9) hosts Kennedy (10-11). Both tip at 7 p.m.

For the second straight year, the 5A brackets are drawn a bit funky. Instead of a standard five-team draw (4 seed hosts 5, winner plays at 1; 2 seed hosts 3), first-round play has 3 seeds hosting 4 seeds, with the winner facing a 2 seed. Meanwhile, the top seed hosts the 5 seed in the semifinals.

“I thought maybe we’d be getting a bye, or at least hosting in the first round,” James said. “On the other hand, I don’t think there’s anybody in our bracket that scares us a lot.”

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

Throughout its regional path, Washington will have the best player on the floor in sophomore Hannah Stuelke, a University of Iowa commit who averages 19.0 points and 11.3 rebounds per game.

“If she has one of those nights, anything is possible,” James said. “And if we shoot well, we’re always going to have a chance to win.”

Mayer’s up-and-down West squad is up again after handing 4A No. 2 Marion its first loss of the season, 76-61, Saturday.

“We had seen bits and pieces of what we’re capable of, but we hadn’t seen it for a full 32 minutes until we saw it at Marion,” he said.

The Women of Troy handled Kennedy, 69-45, Feb. 7.

Class 4A regionals also open Wednesday; the best area team in action is Maquoketa (16-5), which hosts West Delaware (2-19).

In 3A regional semifinals, No. 12 Monticello (17-5) hosts Vinton-Shellsburg (12-10), and No. 14 West Liberty (18-4) welcomes Williamsburg (8-14).

Wednesday's Class 5A regional quarterfinals

(All games, 7 p.m.)

Region 1

Davenport Central (9-11) at Dubuque Hempstead (12-9)

Region 5

Cedar Rapids Kennedy (10-11) at Iowa City West (12-9)

Region 7

Cedar Rapids Washington (10-11) at Ottumwa (12-9)

Region 8

Pleasant Valley (9-12) at Muscatine (11-10)

Wednesday's Class 4A regional quarterfinals

(All games, 7 p.m.)

Region 3

Waterloo East (0-21) at Dubuque Wahlert (7-14)

Charles City (5-16) at Decorah (14-7)

Region 4

Clinton (2-19) at Western Dubuque (6-15)

West Delaware (2-19) at Maquoketa (16-5)

Region 6

Newton (7-14) at Washington (11-9)

Oskaloosa (1-18) at Pella (11-10)

Wednesday's Class 3A regional quarterfinals

(All games, 7 p.m.)

Region 3

Greene County (3-19) at Roland-Story (18-3)

Jesup (18-4) at Hampton-Dumont/CAL (18-3)

Region 4

Waukon (14-8) at Crestwood (18-4)

Anamosa (5-16) at Davenport Assumption (13-7)

Region 5

Waterloo Columbus (9-14) at Dike-New Hartford (20-1)

Vinton-Shellsburg (12-10) at Monticello (17-5)

Region 6

Monroe PCM (10-12) at North Polk (17-5)

Williamsburg (8-14) at West Liberty (18-4)

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

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.