Games of the Week (Week 6)

High School

Posted On: 01/8/18 10:05 AM

Grant DeMeulenaere

MONDAY (Jan. 8)

Game of the night: PCM, Monroe at 1A No. 1 Grand View Christian

The defending champions in Class 1A, Grand View Christian has really stepped up their schedule this season, and Monday night’s game is another tough tilt. PCM enters at 8-1, with the lone loss coming to an undefeated South Hamilton team by two in overtime. The Mustangs have a balanced attack, with seven players averaging between 5.4 and 11.6 points per game. They’ll have their hands full with the Thunder’s star backcourt duo of Grant DeMeuelenaere (25.7) and Mach Nyaw (17.7). This may be the biggest test that the Thunder will get during the regular season, and if anyone has a shot at knocking Grand View from the undefeated perch, it just might be a PCM team that is balanced, tough and physical. This should be a great game, decided in the last few minutes, but we’ll give the slightest edge to the team with the best player (DeMeulenaere), playing at home.
Our pick: Grand View Christian 68, PCM, Monroe 64

Others to monitor
2A No. 8 South Hamilton at Colo-NESCO


Tyreke Locure

TUESDAY (Jan. 9)

Game of the night: 4A No. 2 Des Moines North at 4A No. 7 Des Moines Hoover

Always an interesting contrast in styles, these teams split their meetings last season, and North won the first game this year by a 80-65 margin, much higher scoring than usual meetings between these teams are. If the Polar Bears are able to dictate the tempo again, they can grab a season sweep. Led by star guard Tyreke Locure and his 30.6 points per game, North is averaging 76.4 points a night, second most in Class 4A. The Huskies will have their hands full with him again after he dropped 35 points and nine assists on them back on December 8th. Hoover has a high-scoring guard of their own in Devonte Thedford (20.0), and they’ll need him to play at a high level on both ends of the floor if they want to defend the home floor. If Hoover is able to slow this game down a little bit and play it in the 60s (they’d ideally keep this in the high 40s/low 50s, but good luck against this North team doing that), they’ll have a chance. But the Polar Bears are rolling, and it’s tough to pick against them here.
Our pick: Des Moines North 71, Des Moines Hoover 61

Side note to monitor: Iowa City West hosts Linn-Mar, with a shot at breaking a state record. The Trojans have won 79 consecutive home games, dating back to December 21, 2010. If they’re able to beat the Lions on Tuesday night, they’ll break the state record for longest home winning streak, which they’re currently tied with Palmer for. 

Others to monitor
Treynor at AHSTW, Avoca
1A No. 7 Wapsie Valley at 2A No. 7 Aplington-Parkersburg
3A No. 2 Glenwood at Atlantic
Northeast Goose Lake at 2A No. 3 Cascade
4A No. 8 Dubuque Hempstead at Cedar Rapids Kennedy
1A No. 6 Don Bosco at Dunkerton
2A No. 9 Forest City at Eagle Grove
2A No. 1 Van Meter at Earlham
Kuemper Catholic at 3A No. 9 Harlan
Linn-Mar at 4A No. 1 Iowa City West
2A No. 2 Sioux Center at LeMars
Newton at 3A No. 6 Norwalk
3A No. 1 Oskaloosa at Pella
4A No. 10 Dubuque Senior at Cedar Rapids Prairie
Council Bluffs, Abraham Lincoln at 4A No. 5 Sioux City East
West Des Moines Valley at 4A No. 4 Waukee


Jacob Vis

THURSDAY (Jan. 11)

Game of the night: 2A No. 10 Unity Christian at 2A No. 5 Western Christian

These teams could very well find themselves in the same district when the state releases district/substate groupings in a few weeks. Unity Christian has played the second toughest schedule in Class 2A according to BCMoore’s rankings, while Western has played the sixth toughest. Unity has a remarkably balanced team, with eight players averaging between 4.4 and 9.2 points a game, and they’re allowing just 48.6 points a night. They’ll have their hands full with Western’s junior big man Jacob Vis (16.7), as well as talented scoring guard Caleb Harmsen (12.9). The Wolfpack rarely loses, especially at home, and with the edge they’ll have in the paint with Vis, they’ll get the nod here.
Our pick: Western Christian 62, Unity Christian 55

Others to monitor
Baxter at Martensdale-St. Mary’s
4A No. 5 Sioux City East at Sioux Falls Lincoln (SD)


Mach Nyaw

FRIDAY (Jan. 12)

Game of the night: 1A No. 1 Grand View Christian at 1A No. 5 Lynnville-Sully

On a night loaded with good games, it’s this battle in 1A that stands out. As part of the aforementioned strengthening of their schedule, the Thunder hit the road to Lynnville to take on a top-5 team. As they always are, the Hawks are solid on the defensive end, allowing just 37.8 points a game, good for sixth in 1A. The difference this year is that they’ve also proven to be quite potent offensively, putting up 67.9 a night (16th). They’ll have their hands full with a Grand View team averaging 77.2 points a game, and this could be a more up-tempo game than we’re used to seeing from Lynnville-Sully. Rumor has it that the Thunder will be adding a few new pieces to their rotation for this game in 6-7 Issa Samake and 6-2 Kong Neyail. It remains to be seen how they’ll fit in, but Samake will provide some interior rim protection, which could pay major dividends against a team with slashing wings (Jesse Van Wyk) like the Hawks have. A testing week continues, and the Thunder keeps rolling.
Our pick: Grand View Christian 71, Lynnville-Sully 62

Others to monitor
Hudson at 2A No. 7 Aplington-Parkersburg
Carlisle at Carroll
4A No. 10 Dubuque Senior at Cedar Falls
3A No. 3 Sioux City Bishop Heelan at Council Bluffs, Abraham Lincoln
Linn-Mar at 4A No. 8 Dubuque Hempstead
Garner-Hayfield-Ventura at 2A No. 9 Forest City
1A No. 3 Remsen, St. Mary’s at LeMars, Gehlen Catholic
3A No. 5 Cedar Rapids Xavier at Iowa City High
4A No. 9 Pleasant Valley at Muscatine
Rock Valley at 2A No. 2 Sioux Center
3A No. 2 Glenwood at 1A No. 8 Council Bluffs, St. Albert
Iowa Mennonite at Wapello
LeMars at 2A No. 5 Western Christian


SATURDAY (Jan. 13)

Game of the night: 2A No. 2 Sioux Center at Sioux Falls Christian (SD)

This game should serve as a good barometer for Sioux Center, as Sioux Falls Christian just pounded then-2A No. 8 Unity Christian last weekend 82-56, and they’re currently ranked No. 3 in South Dakota’s Class A (second largest). The Warriors have been rolling so far, winning games by an average of 26 points behind a lineup that features five players averaging double figures. If they’re able to go to Sioux Falls and pick up a big-time road win, they may just be separating themselves from the rest of the pack in northwest Iowa.
Our pick: Sioux Center 74, Sioux Falls Christian 68

Others to monitor
Osage at 3A No. 7 Charles City
Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont at 1A No. 10 Ankeny Christian Academy
Harlan at 3A No. 2 Glenwood
Muscatine vs. Iowa City High
4A No. 10 Dubuque Senior vs. Marian Central Catholic (IL)
3A No. 4 Mount Pleasant at Mount Vernon
Pella at PCM, Monroe
Solon at Iowa City Regina
Northeast Goose Lake vs. Tipton
3A No. 1 Oskaloosa vs. Dubuque Wahlert
2A No. 1 Van Meter at 3A No. 10 Winterset