Four area teams play in jamboree
PACKWOOD – Tuesday was a treat for girls’ basketball fans because they got to see four local schools compete in Pekin’s jamboree.
The four area schools were Pekin, Cardinal, Fairfield and Van Buren, who played in the jamboree with two other schools, Twin Cedars and Davis County. Cardinal played Twin Cedars, Fairfield matched up with Van Buren and Pekin battled Davis County in the nightcap. In a jamboree, the games are only two quarters instead of four.
GAME 1: In game one, Cardinal opted to do its damage with the outside shot. Its first nine points were scored on a trio of three-pointers as the Comets staked out a 9-0 lead. Meanwhile, Cardinal’s defense bothered Twin Cedars, which could never put a run together to get back in the game. The Comets went on to win 20-6.
GAME 2: The Trojans had already played a few scrimmages in Cedar Rapids over the weekend, so Coach Mick Flattery was expecting them to perform well Tuesday night. Fairfield did not look especially sharp in the first quarter and let Van Buren hang around. The Warriors went into the second quarter with just a one-point deficit at 10-9.
The Warriors drew first blood in the second quarter to take an 11-10 lead, prompting a loud cheer from the few dozen Van Buren fans in attendance. Fairfield junior Nicole Buch quieted the crowd with a three-pointer. A few minutes later, Buch hit another three to extend the Trojans’ lead to 19-12.
Trojan senior Sami Fritz, who struggled to score in the first quarter, found her groove in the second when she scored back-to-back buckets to extend Fairfield’s lead to 26-12, which is how it ended.
After allowing Van Buren to take the lead early in the second quarter, the Trojans’ full-court press snuffed out every scoring chance the Warriors had. Van Buren had to work just to advance the ball past half-court as the Trojans forced numerous steals and errant passes.
GAME 3: The Pekin Panthers lost four starters to graduation last year, which means there is a lot of varsity playing time to be divvied up among the young girls.
“With only one starter back, the girls need to learn to play with each other,” said Panther head coach Davis Eidahl. “We also are working on being able to play several girls.”
Pekin got off to a good start and was able to keep Davis County at bay. Those Panthers auditioning for minutes certainly proved they could score as their 34 points were the most of any team at the jamboree. Davis County finished with 24.
UPCOMING GAMES: The Comets start the regular season on the road with a 7:30 p.m. game Monday in Albia. Van Buren begins its season the following day with a 7:30 p.m. tilt in Danville. Those who missed Fairfield and Pekin Tuesday need not worry because the Trojans and Panthers will play each other in the “Iowa Hall of Pride Challenge” at 6 p.m. Friday in Fairfield.