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Chris Umscheid

Runner-up, again

6th consecutive year at state tournament yields another second-place finish for West

DES MOINES– If there was an underlying theme to the Iowa City West High boys’ 2016 Class 4A State Basketball Tournament experience, it had to be, “We needed to play better.”
The West High Trojans, in their sixth-consecutive state tournament appearance, knocked off Des Moines Hoover in the first round and Cedar Falls in the semifinals before falling 46-39 to West Des Moines Valley in the championship.

New era for CCA Track and Field

Robison takes over boys’ program, sees opportunities

TIFFIN– After 10 years leading the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) varsity boys track and field program, coach Tony Brack resigned last year, and his three-year assistant, Ben Robison, took the helm of both the boys cross country and track programs.
Robison is assisted by Karl Vogel, Jackson Litterer, Ronnie Hughes and Matt Hoch and inherits a squad with two returning state qualifiers in the form of Eric Douglass (1,600 and 3,200-meter runs) and Derek Toy (400-meter hurdles). Douglass is a senior while Toy is a junior.

Jail 3.0

New technology upgrades keep county jail functioning

IOWA CITY— It’s the same old jail, but with a high-tech difference after a major technological upgrade.
After voters in Johnson County repeatedly defeated bond referendums that would have replaced the County Jail, the County Board of Supervisors took action in October 2014 to extend the life of the existing facility.

Coach Ottoson bids farewell

Xavier Saints bring down the curtain on CCA’s season;

CEDAR RAPIDS– When the final horn sounded Thursday, Feb. 25, in the Cedar Rapids Prairie High School gym, the Cedar Rapids Xavier Saints walked off the basketball court as the Class 3A District 9 Champions. The Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Clippers walked off the floor with their season over.
Their coach, Steve Ottoson, walked off the court for the final time as a 40-year career (with 21 at the helm of the CCA program) came to its end.
Xavier (15-8 overall) took the contest, 53-42, and advanced to the 3A Sub-State No. 5 Final Monday, Feb. 29, at Iowa City West against Mount Pleasant (18-5).

IC West Trojans roll over Jefferson J-Hawks

IC West dumps CR Jefferson 73-48 in substate semifinal

IOWA CITY– The West High boys’ basketball juggernaut rolled over the J-Hawks of Cedar Rapids Jefferson Friday, Feb. 26, in Iowa City with a 73-48 victory, which set up a rematch with rival City High for the Class 4A Substate No. 6 championship and a trip to the state basketball tournament.

Tight budgets put spotlight on unpaid school fees

OXFORD — It’s a question of fairness.
That’s how at least one member of the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) school board of directors feels about outstanding student debt.
During the board’s January meeting in Oxford, CCA Superintendent Tim Kuehl spoke to the board about the problem of students generating bills (from enrollment fees to activity participation fees) and leaving them unpaid when they graduate.
Kuehl prefaced the discussion by saying he was not seeking board action but wanted to hear their thoughts and suggestions.

Victory just out of reach for CCA Clipper girls

End season with 44-35 loss

TIFFIN– Coach P.J. Sweeney was baffled. He’d watched every bit of video he could find on the Clinton River Queens and scouted them. He thought he’d cooked up a plan to get the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Clippers through their Class 4A quarterfinal round game against the Clinton River Queens.
But after 32 minutes of basketball and a 44-35 loss, Sweeney and company were performing an autopsy to determine what had gone wrong.

A tough night in the Little Hawks’ nest

City takes both ends of varsity boys, girls doubleheader

IOWA CITY– A shockwave rippled through Iowa City as the City High Little Hawks snapped a 15-game losing streak to their crosstown rivals, the West High Trojans, in the second half of a varsity double-header Friday, Feb. 12.
City High took down the Trojans, 63-53, in the teams’ second meeting of the season. West took the first contest in January, 45-31, at West High.

NLFD: “rhino tough” is enough

NL firefighters to participate in charity stair climb

NORTH LIBERTY— For the fourth year, members of the North Liberty Fire Department (NLFD) will participate in the American Lung Association’s “Fight For Air Climb,” a fundraising event.
Ten NLFD firefighters will join their brothers and sisters from across the state, as well as law enforcement officers and the general public in climbing 86 floors and 1,796 stairs in four buildings in downtown Des Moines on Sunday, April 10.

West knocks off CR Jefferson and Xavier

Two nights, two games, two wins for Trojans

IOWA CITY– Two nights, two games and two wins.
That’s how Iowa City West High’s Trojans spent Friday and Saturday, Feb. 5 and 6.
Bergie’s Boys blasted the J-Hawks of Cedar Rapids Jefferson, 102-74, in the J-Hawks’ nest on Friday and returned home for a match-up against Cedar Rapids Xavier, which was rescheduled from Tuesday, Feb. 2. The Trojans sullied the Saints, 72-55.

Creek Girls win two in a row

CCA knocks off Williamsburg, Independence in consecutive games

TIFFIN– Put two more wins in the book for the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) varsity girls basketball squad. The Clippers knocked off rival Williamsburg, 51-35, Thursday, Feb. 4, at home and put away the visiting Mustangs of Independence, 44-35, 24 hours later.
Erin Navara led the Creek Girls with 18 points (including three 3-point goals) against Williamsburg, backed up by Be DeShaw’s 12. Claire Navara scored nine (all 3-point goals) in the game, which was a make-up of a weather postponement from Tuesday, Feb. 2.

Heartbreak on Melrose

West’s Women of Troy lose upset bid in overtime

IOWA CITY– The West High Women of Troy came up just a bit short in a bid to pull off a major upset in the Mississippi Valley Conference’s Valley Division Tuesday, Jan. 26. The Cedar Falls Tigers rolled into Iowa City, 14-1 overall and 8-0 in conference play to lead the division, while the Women of Troy were 10-5 and 6-2.