Marquette Catholic is on quite a run in girls sports.
The Mohawks have sent someone, or a whole team, to the state tournament in track and field, golf, softball, cross country, volleyball and now basketball — all since last spring.
"I think the really big thing is growing up, all of our siblings went to state," Marquette senior Danielle Bender said. "You see that and know what it takes to get it done. It doesn't just come; you have to work to get it."
Marquette's senior class, responsible for much of the recent success, was given a push to excel, a trait they have passed down to teammates.
"I know our class has been really pushed to try our best in school and in sports," senior Kelsey Tebbe said. "That really helped us because that gave us the nerve to push the younger kids."
Heading into the postseason, the Mohawks (16-6) were favored to win all their games except the district final against Grundy Center. But the Mohawks pulled out a five-point win to advance to state for the second time in the past three years.
"Everyone knows that when districts come, anyone can win," senior Sarah Lampe said. "We don't think about whether we should or shouldn't win. We just go out and play our game."
Two years ago, Marquette won its first game at the state tournament and held a 12-point lead over Ar-We-Va of Westside in the semifinals before losing. The Mohawks' opponent in this year's opener at 11:45 a.m. Monday is 21-3 Ar-We-Va.
"It will really help with our nerves because we've been there and we know what it's all about," Lampe said.
"I wouldn't want to play anyone but Ar-We-Va," Bender said. "We all want our payback."
Lampe, Bender, Tebbe and senior Theresa Koos were members of the team that made school history two years ago, and they're looking to do it again.
"We know how it feels to win out there, and we want to get back there," Koos said.
"We also know how it feels to lose," Lampe said.
"We don't want to do that again," Koos said.
While the four obviously wanted to return to the state tournament their junior year, it was watching their crosstown rivals — Bellevue High School — advance to state that spurred on this return trip.
"Last year, we were at Wells Fargo watching and we were like, 'We will be here next year,'" Bender said. "That was our No. 1 goal."Now they've made it, so the most difficult part is over, but there's still work to do.
"Districts is the time when you work the hardest," Tebbe said. "State is the time to have fun, and still work hard."
So what are the Mohawks looking for Monday when they take the court?
"We want to win," Koos said.
"If we play our best and know we couldn't have done anything else and we still get beat, fine," Lampe said.
"We want to leave everything on the floor and know when we're done we couldn't have done anything else," Bender said. "That's what we said all season."
Marquette Catholic is on quite a run in girls sports.
- Hammel, Olt lead Cubs past D'backs CHICAGO (AP) -- Jason Hammel is certain the Chicago Cubs are better than their record so far. Hammel pitched seven strong innings, Mike Olt hit a three-run home run and Nate Schierholtz drove in a pair of early runs to lead the Cubs to a 9-2 victory
- Schreiber wins dual; Coppess 2nd at tri BETTENDORF -- To be the best, you have to beat the best. Brittany Coppess came close to doing that Tuesday at Hidden Hills Golf Course in a triangular meet between North Scott, Clinton and Pleasant Valley. Coppess finished with a nine-hole 42, 5 over
- Jones has eyes set on prize FULTON, Ill. -- Ethan Jones has all the confidence that he can become the Three Rivers Conference Player of the Year in baseball. "I just need to work hard, show up everyday and just play the best that I can every game so I can help my team win," Jo
- Lancers blank Queens, Kings CLINTON -- Chloe Gottschalk scored a hat trick to lead North Scott past Clinton 7-0 in girls soccer Tuesday night. Gina Matthys added a pair of goals, while Lindsay Gallens and Olivia Schmidt scored once apiece. Abby Nass played all 80 minutes in goa
- Bandits bang out 11 runs on LumberKings CLINTON -- At least the kids who showed up for the Clinton LumberKings game on Tuesday afternoon had a good time. The home team on the field didn't after dropping the matinee to Quad Cities 11-2. Eddie Campbell got the ball for the LumberKings, but
- Kings kick off big week at Gateway CLINTON -- It's not quite the state meet in terms of importance, but this week is right up there for the Clinton boys track and field team. Seniors Deshond Robinson and Nathan Harden were in top form Tuesday as they tuned up for the Drake Relays by h
- Loss puts Bulls in a big hole CHICAGO -- This one looked as if it were slipping away from the Washington Wizards. Then, in a flash everything changed. Bradley Beal came on strong late in regulation to finish with 26 points, Nene scored six of his 17 points in overtime and the Wiz
- Welcome-back win CLINTON -- Scoring in every event, the Camanche boys track and field team presented coach Mark Metzger with a terrific "welcome back" gift Tuesday evening. The Indians piled up 171 points to win the Class B portion of the 94th annual Gateway Classic
Players relent, agree to play for reinstated football coach
Minnesota State University-Mankato's football team has ended its boycott of reinstated head coach Todd Hoffner, who successfully fought child pornography charges and other misconduct accusations that removed him from the job for 20 months.
Hoffner said he assured the players, who refused to take the practice field Wednesday, that interim coach Aaron Keen, who led the team in Hoffner's absence, will continue in a major role with the team.
- Morrison wins twinbill at Fulton FULTON, Ill. -- As Fulton baseball coach Kyle Miller put it after losing both games to Morrison on Monday, the losses were tough to swallow, but all the Steamers could do afterward was tip their hats toward the Mustangs. Morrison won 1-0, then 11-4
- More Sports Headlines