Not only did the Trojan boys’ basketball team improve to 15-3 overall by soundly defeating their visitors from Fort Madison 69-33 Friday night in front of an enthusiastically packed gymnasium at FHS, they secured an unblemished 8-0 conference record while officially claiming the programs’ first SEC title since 2004.
“Having not played a Southeast Conference game on our home court since December was tough,” explained head coach Mick Flattery. “We’ve taken on everyone’s best shot and handled it. So getting back to the friendly confines of Trojan Gymnasium felt terrific, winning the title is great and going undefeated in a really good league is an awesome accomplishment,” added the long-time Trojan leader.
With Mother Nature’s fury forcing Coaches versus Cancer, FBLA pasta night, senior night and a fourth grade boys basketball showcase to share the same evening, Trojan Nation came out in full force.
“Our student body and community came out like no other,” said Flattery. “Thanks to all of you for making this a special night. Your applause and cheers for our stifling defense and electric offensive plays were much appreciated.”
“I never thought I was that popular,” said the team’s unofficial player/mascot, senior Brittan Bowman, who entered the game midway through the fourth quarter to an uproarious applause. “It sounded like someone like Shaq was walking in the room. It’s never been that packed and it’s crazy how when you keep things rolling like we are how many people will show up. It was a really good night.”
Things went from good to better when B-Bo hit a senior night shot he’ll not soon forget.
“I went in and it was loud, but then I scored and it was crazy. It sounded like we were in the middle of the Georgia Dome during the Super Bowl,” described the future Cyclone who will head to Ames in the fall to study engineering.
Junior Landon Kooiker had fun too as he continues to find his place in the Trojan melting pot. “It was a blast, especially with all the seniors going so hard.”
Two of those seniors were Mark Diers and Carson Crile.
“We’re a tight group and it was just an amazing night,” explained Diers. “Every day we get one day shorter, but we’re just taking it together.”
Crile added, “It’s fun, there’s nothing like it and it’s a memory I’ll have for the rest of my life.”
As for winning the conference, it was at the top of the Trojans’ list, not the bottom.
“It was one of our goals at the beginning,” said the 6’3 swingman. “Now that we’ve accomplished it, we’ve got bigger goals to meet by winning substate and going to state. That’s our main focus.”
Tristin Waugh 17 points, six rebounds and four steals; Collin Breen 12 points, seven deflections and four assists; Carson Crile 12 points, four deflections and four steals; Austin Simpson 11 points, 10 rebounds, nine deflections and seven assists; Drew Martin five points and three steals; Mark Diers four points; Cole Engle two points, four rebounds and three assists; Landon Kooiker two points; Brittan Bowman two points and three rebounds; Carter Ferrel two points/
With the Trojans ranked No. 7 in last week’s AP poll and No. 2 Norwalk losing by 21 to unranked Oskaloosa, No. 3 Maquoketa losing to unranked Dyersville Beckman and No. 6 West Delaware losing to Maquoketa, Fairfield could be on the move.
Tonight’s game versus 5-11 Burlington, who collected their fifth win of the season by a single point Saturday night at home against 0-17 Muscatine, has been cancelled. The Trojans will hopefully host Knoxville on Thursday.