Boys Basketball

Iowa City West remains best at home, rolls past Linn-Mar, 69-42

Trojans have won either state-record 79 or 80 straight on home floor

Iowa City West head coach Steve Bergman. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
Iowa City West head coach Steve Bergman. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

IOWA CITY — On Dec. 21, 2010, Iowa City West played a boys’ basketball game against Cedar Falls. It didn’t go well for the Trojans.

They trailed after the first quarter, 20-4, and ended up losing, 64-46.

You’ll remember some of the players in that game. West’s Jeremy Morgan was a sophomore, Wyatt Lohaus a freshman.

Cedar Falls had this sophomore named Ike Boettger, who scored nine points in the rout.

“We got crushed,” said West Coach Steve Bergman, after his Class 4A top-ranked team’s record-tying or breaking 69-42 win Tuesday night over Linn-Mar. “The week before, I remember Linn-Mar crushed us, too. The first game after break, we played up at Wash and got beat on a half-court shot at the buzzer. Led the whole game. Then we played at Jeff and got beat by (Jarrod) Uthoff. Led the whole game. I thought ‘Oh, my God, we’ve lost three in a row.’ Then we didn’t lose again that season until the state tournament.”

The Trojans haven’t lost at home since that debacle against CF seven-plus years ago. This was either West’s 79th or 80th consecutive win on its home floor.

The Iowa High School Athletic Association believes it’s 80, though a scan of QuikStats, the state’s stat-keeping service, shows 79. Bergman said to go with the IHSAA.

Regardless of the exact number, it’s incredibly impressive.

“Let’s see, I would have been 9 or 10 years old (then),” said West’s Seybian Sims. “I actually didn’t come to the games. Back in seventh and eighth grade, I didn’t play basketball that much.”

Palmer, which isn’t even a high school anymore, also won 79 straight.

As Bergman pointed out, that was against fellow little schools. West’s opponents during this streak (which have included teams from out of state) have been considerably larger.

“When you think about who we play, it’s so many different teams, and I guess that’s what’s cool about it,” Bergman said. “It shows we’ve had a lot of good talent, and we’ve had good consistency over the last seven years. And a little luck. I remember about five times (during the span) where I thought ‘Well, we just lost,’ and somehow we won.”

McCaffery scored 23 points and Sims 15 as West (9-0) rolled. The Trojans really got into Linn-Mar defensively in the second quarter, causing turnovers, getting layups off those turnovers and expanding a three-point to 17 at the break.

Trey Hutcheson had 16 points to lead Linn-Mar (5-4). The Lions did not make a 3-point field goal, which had to be the first time in a long time that has happened.

“Yeah, our defense really picked up in the second,” said Sims, part of a 6-foot-8, 6-7, 6-6 front line. “We came out and were much stronger.”

“We didn’t handle that very well, weren’t very good,” said Linn-Mar Coach Chris Robertson. “That’s where they stretched it out. It just went downhill from there.”

West’s next chance to extend its record streak isn’t until Jan. 23, against rival Iowa City High.

“That’s impressive, shows how good they’ve been and how good they are,” Robertson said. “I’d be surprised if it doesn’t continue for awhile.”

AT IOWA CITY WEST

LINN-MAR (42): Jaren Nelson 0-3 0-0 0, Trey Hutcheson 5-11 6-8 16, Nate Annis 2-3 0-0 4, Jacob Robertson 1-2 4-4 6, Nolan Ruff 3-8 0-1 6, Jack Gertsen 0-3 0-0 0, Cole Martin 2-3 0-2 4, Hayden Passmore 2-3 0-0 4, Cam Nelson 1-2 0-0 2, Tyler Oberbroecking 0-1 0-0 0, Eli Havlik 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 16-39 10-15 42.

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IOWA CITY WEST (69): Hakeem Odunsi 2-4 2-2 7, Seybian Sims 6-7 3-3 15, Patrick McCaffery 8-15 7-8 23, Evan Flitz 3-5 0-0 8, Dante Eldridge 3-3 0-0 8, Dadrian Hoambrecker 2-4 0-0 4, Jake Anderson 0-3 0-0 0, Brayden Adcock 0-0 0-0 0, Paul McGee Jr. 1-2 0-0 2, Jayson Barnes 0-0 0-0 0, Jalen Gaudet 0-0 0-0 0, Jacob Klein 0-0 0-0 0, Cole Mabry 0-0 0-0 0, T.J. Hillberry 0-0 0-0 0, Dashawn Willis 0-1 0-0 0, Lucas McCool 0-0 0-0 0, Blake Miller 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 25-44 14-15 69.

Halftime — West 36, Linn-Mar 19. 3-point goals — West 5-9 (Odunsi 1-1, McCaffery 0-1, Flitz 2-2, Eldridge 2-2, Hoambrecker 0-1, Anderson 0-2), Linn-Mar 0-5 (J. Nelson 0-2, Hutcheson 0-1, Ruff 0-1, Martin 0-1). Rebounds — West 28 (Sims 8), Linn-Mar 18 (J. Nelson, Passmore 3). Total fouls — Linn-Mar 17, West 17. Fouled out — None. Turnovers — Linn-Mar 18, West 15.

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

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