By Jon Gremmels Herald Sports Editor
The Clinton Herald
---- — CLINTON — A pair of first cousins who helped their teams reach the state tournament were honored today with first-team all-state honors by the Iowa Newspaper Association.
Kyle Bauer, who spearheaded Central DeWitt’s drive to a second-place finish in the state, was named to a utility spot on the eight-player first team in Class 3A. Meanwhile, Chase Zaruba, the leading scorer on Easton Valley’s team that made it to Des Moines, was one of three backcourt players honored on the first team in Class 1A. Zaruba’s father and Bauer’s mother are brother and sister.
Adding to the deep talent pool in the area, Clinton’s Jalen Jones was named to the second team in Class 4A.
“That’s awesome,” Central DeWitt coach Jeff Frick said he learned the news about his 6-foot-2 senior guard.
Led by Bauer, Central DeWitt (23-4) reached the 3A championship game, where it lost to Dubuque Wahlert for the second time in the season. But playing three games in the state tournament benefited Bauer individually, according to Frick.
“He has been wanting to play college ball for a long time, and he’s getting more looks now,” Frick said.
Bauer led the Sabers with 15 points a game; shot 48 percent from the field, 73.3 percent from the line and 33.9 percent from 3-point range; and led the team with 42 3-pointers. He also finished second in rebounding at 3.9 a game, had a team-high 57 steals and blocked 15 shots and made 60 assists for the Sabers.
“The biggest strength of Kyle this year was he became more well-rounded,” Frick said. “I think he became a better scorer because he was a better player all-around.”
Zaruba also led his team to the state tournament, and Easton Valley finished with a 21-3 record after losing to Keota in the Class 1A quarterfinals.
Zaruba, a 6-1 senior guard, averaged 23.6 points a game, the sixth-highest total in Class 1A. He shot 53 percent from the field and also made 49 of 141 3-point attempts and was a 67.8 percent free-throw shooter. In addition, he led the team with 71 steals and had 49 assists and 70 rebounds.
“I think part of it was we switched him to the two-guard spot,” Easton Valley coach Dan Beck said of the difference between Zaruba’s junior and senior seasons. “He was playing left wing for us, and we have a tendency to push the ball down the right side. That made sure almost every time down he was going to touch the ball.
“That was part of the difference, and our defense forced a lot of turnovers. He always played at the top of our press or zone, and with his speed and quickness he was good at finishing at the other end. He also improved his 3-point shooting, and because of his range, if they came out on him, with his quickness he could go by them. He also could post up most people.”
Jones, a 6-foot-6 senior, became Clinton’s all-time scoring leader this season, passing Dick Farwell’s record that stood for 60 years, and he became the first player in River Kings history to surpass the 1,000-point mark for a career.
He finished ninth in Class 4A in scoring (19 points a game) and shot 41.4 percent from the field and 76.6 percent from the free-throw line. Jones also averaged 7.3 rebounds a game, was the team leader with 45 assists and 36 steals, and blocked 29 shots.
Jones, who has signed a letter-of-intent to play next year at NCAA Division I Nebraska-Omaha, was one of six players honored from the Mississippi Athletic Conference in Class 4A.
Bettendorf’s Nicholas Baer, a 6-7 senior who was the MAC’s Player of the Year, and 6-5 junior Cortez Seales of North Scott were first-team picks; Bettendorf’s Cole Clearman, a 6-0 senior guard, joined Jones on the second team; and 6-3 senior Kendall Jacks of Bettendorf and 6-5 sophomore Will Carius of Pleasant Valley were named to the third team.
The state’s Mr. Basketball award went to Iowa City West player Wyatt Lohaus. The 6-foot-2 senior guard averaged 20 points and 5 rebounds a game and shot 57 percent from the field and 88.5 percent from the free-throw line. The Northern Iowa recruit also has led West to three consecutive Class 4A state championships.
IOWA NEWSPAPER ASSOCIATION
BOYS BASKETBALL ALL-STATE
Frontline — Kory Kuenstling, 6-11, sr., Dunkerton; Jeremy Deemer, 6-7, sr., Lamoni; Dalton Anderson, 6-3, sr., Newell-Fonda. Backcourt — Brandon Snyder, 6-1, sr., West Lyon; Riley Francis, 6-4, sr., Boyden-Hull; Chase Zaruba, 6-1, sr., Easton Valley. Utility — Elias Nissen, 6-6, sr., Springville; T.J. Bower, 6-3, sr., Nodaway Valley.
Frontline — Logan Seiser, 6-6, sr., Northeast Hamilton; Elijah Kinseth, 6-4, sr., Belmond-Klemme; Cody Bauman, 6-5, sr., West Lyon. Backcourt — Kolton Greiner, 5-9, sr., Keota; Camden Kickbush, 5-11, jr., Gladbrook-Reinbeck; Tyler Stumbo, 6-4, jr., Laurens-Marathon. Utility — Blake Wiltgen, 6-5, sr., LeMars Gehlen; Trenton Gosnell, 6-1, sr., Lone Tree.
Frontline — Thomas Fitzsimmons, 6-5, sr., Van Buren; Zach Pierce, 6-4, jr., Gladbrook-Reinbeck; Dallas Nye, 6-2, sr., Iowa Mennonite School. Backcourt — Mason Speer, 5-11, jr., Danville; Trevor Larson, 5-10, sr., Jesup; Paul Kaufmann, 6-4, jr., North Tama. Utility — Nic Lutmer, 6-3, jr., Central Lyon; Dalton Harms, 6-5, Sr., Midland.
Frontline — Casey Schlatter, 6-8, sr., Iowa Falls-Alden; Reed Tellinghuisen, 6-6, sr., East Sac County; Sam Amsbaugh, 6-5, sr., West Fork. Backcourt — Carson Parker, 6-1, sr.; Haris Takes, 6-1, sr., Cascade; Erich Erdman, 5-11, jr., Forest City. Utility — Andrew Van Ginkel, 6-4, sr., Rock Valley; Duncan Ferch, 6-3, sr., West Marshall.
Frontline — Robby Burke, 6-6, sr., Fort Dodge St. Edmond; Drew Cook, 6-5, jr., Iowa City Regina; Cole Neary, 6-6, sr., Carroll Kuemper. Backcourt — Matt Baker, 5-8, jr., Albia; Cody Mason, 6-2, sr., MFL/MarMac; Tyler Hetzler, 6-3, sr., Wilton. Utility — Jayden Johnson, 6-4, jr., North Cedar; Andrew O’Donnell, 6-4, sr., Sioux Center.
Frontline — Sam Brincks, 6-6, sr., Carroll Kuemper; Taylor Feenstra, 6-7, sr., Western Christian; Jacob Flathers, 6-6, jr., Treynor. Backcourt — Trevor Haaland, 6-0, sr., Osage; Sawyer Herman, 6-1, sr., Monticello; Jake Petzenhauser, 5-11, sr., South Central Calhoun. Utility — Colten Connelly, 6-3, sr.; Stephen Folkert, 6-5, sr., Van Meter.
Frontline — Trey Lansman, 6-7, sr., Harlan; Cordell Pemsl, 6-7, so., Dubuque Wahlert; Eli Dunne, 6-5, sr., Grinnell. Backcourt — Miles Wentzien, 6-3, jr., Fort Madison; Spencer Haldeman, 6-1, jr., Western Dubuque; Nick Drucker, 6-2, sr., Dallas Center-Grimes. Utility — Levi Jansen, 6-1, so., MOC-Floyd Valley; Kyle Bauer, 6-2, sr., Central DeWitt.
Frontline — Isaac Naaktgeboorn, 6-3, jr., Pella; Cody Netusil, 6-2, sr., Carroll; Josh Carter, 6-5, jr., Dubuque Wahlert. Backcourt — Alec Henrickson, 6-2, jr., Spirit Lake; Mason Jensen, 6-1, sr., Ballard; Nate Woeste, 6-2, sr., Benton Community. Utility — Jake Velky, 6-1, jr., Waverly-Shell Rock; Tyler Borchers, 6-6, jr., LeMars.
Frontline — Jay Wolfe, 6-4, jr., Creston; Nate Cave, 6-4, sr., Harlan; Matt Heitmann, 6-9, sr., Williamsburg. Backcourt — Yach Deng, 6-1, sr., Storm Lake; Jaxon Heinz, 6-0, jr., Humboldt; Daric Laing, 6-2, so., Chariton. Utility — Adam McDermott, 6-4, jr., Cedar Rapids Xavier; Spencer Davidson, 6-2, sr., Clear Lake.
Frontline — Daniel Tillo, 6-5, jr., Sioux City North; Michael Jacobsen, 6-8, jr., Waukee; Nicholas Baer, 6-7, sr., Bettendorf. Backcourt — Wyatt Lohaus, 6-2, sr., Iowa City West; Teyonte Jenkins, 5-10, sr., Des Moines North; Kyle Haber, 6-7, sr., Dubuque Senior. Utility — Cortez Seales, 6-5, jr., North Scott; Nick Jeffries, 6-3, sr., Southeast Polk.
Frontline — Jay Knuth, 6-7, sr., Johnston; Jay Schon, 6-7, jr., Ankeny Centennial; Allen Lazard, 6-5, sr., Urbandale. Backcourt — Terrance Bush, 6-1, sr., Des Moines North; Cole Clearman, 6-0, sr., Bettendorf; Jordan Bohannan, 6-1, so., Marion Linn-Mar. Utility — Jalen Jones, 6-6, sr., Clinton; Jacob Olson, 6-0, sr., Cedar Rapids Jefferson.
Frontline — Lincoln Conrey, 6-5, jr., Waterloo West; Anthony Nelson, 6-7, jr., Waukee; Seth Bonifas, 6-9, sr., Dubuque Senior. Backcourt — Sam Straub, 6-2, sr., Ames; Kendall Jacks, 6-3, sr., Bettendorf; David DiLeo, 6-6, jr., Iowa City West. Utility — Will Carius, 6-5, so., Pleasant Valley; Luke McDonnell, 6-9, jr., Dubuque Senior.