With the departure of current Wayne State shooting guard Luke TerHark, it’s now Landon Rash’s turn to captain the ship. Rash proved to be more than capable of taking over games this summer at the Norwalk team camp, and has a strong cast of players aside him to make a significant splash in 3A this season.
Last season’s middling team (9-14) lost its three leading scorers, but there’s reason for optimism this season with the emergence of incoming sophomore Rhett Darland who’s had a fantastic offseason. Sophomore Sam Urness played significant varsity minutes last season for the Cowboys, who may very well improve upon its nine win total from a season ago.
It’s leading four scorers are gone from last season’s 14-7 squad, and it’ll be up to senior Parker Treusdell and junior Thomas Storbeck to pick up the slack this season for the Lions.
Seniors Coleton Barz and Datron Gooder were key players off the bench last season during the Bulldogs’ 12-10 campaign. They’ll move into leadership roles this season as their team tries to propel themselves into the upper-echelon of the conference.
Thomas Orness was sensational last season for the Wildcats, averaging 13 points per game while connecting on 44 percent of his 3-point attempts. Aside from him it will be a new cast of characters to fill the void of the six seniors who played significant minutes last season.
After an abysmal one win season last year, the Cadets return four starters and six of their seven best scorers. They will almost certainly improve upon last season’s win total, but it will be an uphill battle to become one of the conference’s best.
St. Edmond Catholic
What could be the most improved team in the conference this season, the Gaels had a nice season last year (12-10), and return a bevy of talent. Seven players return who played significant varsity minutes, though its leading scorer and best player Landon Peed will need to be replaced.
Like St. Edmond, the Lynx lose their leading scorer, but retain a wealth of talent from last season’s 14-10 team. Five seniors who played integral roles last season will try and fill Mason Meyers’ role, he averaged 17.1 points per game last season.
Projected Order of Finish
2. Saint Edmond Catholic
3. Webster City
4. Clear Lake
8. Iowa Falls-Alden
Analysis: In one of the more even-keeled conferences the state has to offer, it could be any team to reign supreme come season's end. Algona has the best player, and some key role players from last season who seem poised to move into key integral roles this year. Seemingly every team has a chance to be better, and there will no easy outs here come this winter.
Preseason Player of the year
Landon Rash, Algona, 2016: 13 ppg, 42 3FG%, 3.9 apg, 5 rpg
Rhett Darland, Clarion-Goldfield, 2018: The sophomore averaged north of 25 points per game last season with the freshman, and has made a name for himself this offseason while attending several camps and on the grassroots circuit. We expect the 6-foot-2 guard to make some noise with the Cowboys this season.
players to watch
Landon Rash, Algona, 2016
Thomas Orness, Humboldt, 2016
Avery Fuhs, Webster City, 2016
Jace Ites, Iowa Falls-Alden, 2017
Alec Fuhs, Webster City, 2016
Robert Flattery, St. Edmond Catholic, 2016
Coleton Barz, Hampton-Dumont, 2016
Sam Urness, Clarion-Goldfield, 2017