The five schools in the Dallas County News coverage area (A-D-M, Dallas Center-Grimes, Van Meter, Waukee and Woodward-Granger) have a rich history in many sports. Whether their sport be baseball, wrestling, track and field, football or anything else, the teams in the area have had success, both recently and in the distant past.
One sport that the teams in the area lack experience on the biggest stage, however, is boys’ basketball. Between the five teams in the DCN coverage area, they have a collective 14 State Tournament appearances and a collective 2-14 record in State Tournament games.
Dallas Center-Grimes and Waukee are the two area teams that have qualified for the boys State Basketball Tournament this season. For the Mustangs it is their fourth appearance, all under current head coach Joel Rankin, and for the Warriors it will be their sixth, although neither team has ever won a State Tournament game.
The Mustangs made the State Tournament for the first time just five years ago, in 2010 and then they made it again in 2010 and 2013. They lost in the first round in all three appearances and are 0-3 overall in State Tournament games.
The Warriors’ history in the State Tournament is more spread throughout the years and goes back much further than the Mustangs. The Warriors made the Tournament for the first time in 1982 and then again in 1990, 2000, 2008 and 2012, but they are also winless in State Tournament games going 0-5 overall.
It would be hard to tell after the abysmal season the A-D-M boys’ basketball team just had this year, going 3-19 overall, but the Tigers are the only team in the area who have won a State Tournament game. They are 2-4 overall and current head coach Aaron Mager coached them to a third-place finish, the highest finish in school history, back in 2008.
The Tigers have been to the State Tournament four times in school history, twice under Mager as he guided them there just three years ago in 2012. They qualified for the first time back in 1970 as Adel High School and then again in 1984 as Adel-DeSoto High School.
Woodward-Granger and Van Meter are both 0-1 in State Tournament appearances.
The Hawks haven’t made the tournament in 29 years where they lost in the first round back in the 1986 tournament.
The Bulldogs of Van Meter have been waiting a very long time to make a return to the State Tournament. They haven’t been to the State Tournament since 1936, 79 years ago, where they also lost right away in the first round.
In conclusion, the area boys’ basketball teams have not been the cream of the crop throughout the decades, but two teams have a chance to leave their mark in this year’s State Tournament and win their first ever tournament games.
The Mustangs (20-4) have the No. 4 seed in the tournament and will play LeMars, the No. 5 seed in the first round of Class 3A on Tuesday, March 10. The Warriors (18-5) have the No. 5 seed and will take on North Scott, the No. 4 seed in the first round of Class 4A on Wednesday, March 11 at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines.