Newell-Fonda climbs to No. 4 in latest boys ratings

Monday, December 30, 2002

They're tall, they're successful and now, the Sioux City Heelan Crusaders are No. 1.

Heelan replaced Pella as the No. 1 team in Class 3A in The Associated Press high school basketball polls. The Crusaders, third last week, jumped past Humboldt to claim the top spot after Pella's 50-48 loss to Grinnell.

Pella, which beat Heelan in last year's state championship game, dropped to fourth.

The leaders in the three other polls stayed the same - Waterloo East in 4A, Danville in 2A and Boyden-Hull in 1A.

Heelan has a starting five that includes 6-foot-8 sophomore Matt Cleveland, 6-6 junior Dylan Grimsley and 6-5 junior Adi Cizmic. The Crusaders have two 6-8 players on the bench and another who is 6-7.

Grimsley leads the team with an 18.5 scoring average. The four other starters average from eight to 9.2 points.

Humboldt remained second and Harlan climbed two spots to third. Humboldt had seven first-place votes compared to Heelan's six, but Heelan had a 144-142 edge in points in the voting by writers and broadcasters from around the state.

Harlan received one first-place vote and Pella had two.

The 3A poll had one newcomer, unbeaten Washington moving in at No. 9 to replace Cedar Rapids Xavier, which lost twice last week.

Waterloo East again was a unanimous No. 1 in 4A after improving to 5-0 with an 82-51 victory over Marion Linn-Mar. East's closest game this season has been a 23-point win over Mason City in its opener.

No. 8 Cedar Falls, No. 9 Muscatine and No. 10 Cedar Rapids Prairie are newcomers. Davenport North, North Scott and Iowa City West dropped out. Those three teams had four losses in six games last week, including North's 59-58 loss to Muscatine.

Losses by Grundy Center and Dyersville Beckman caused some slight shuffling in 2A.

Grundy Center lost to Waterloo Columbus but won its two other games last week and fell two spots to sixth. Dyersville Beckman also went 2-1, losing to Camanche, and tumbled five places to 10th.

Defending state champion Danville won three times during the week and received 14 first-place votes. The two others went to No. 2 PCM of Monroe. No. 3 Wapsie Valley is closing the gap on PCM and trails the Mustangs by only two points.

Wapsie Valley averaged 87.5 points in two wins last week. Guard Brooks McKowen scored 59 in a victory over Jesup on Friday night, including 36 in the second half.

Boyden-Hull edged Pomeroy-Palmer 143-141 for the No. 1 spot in 1A. Both received seven first-place votes.

No. 9 Moravia and No. 10 Odebolt-Arthur joined the Top Ten for the first time this season. Fredericksburg and Postville dropped out.

With teams heading into a holiday break, there will be no polls next week. The next polls will be released Jan. 6.

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