#5 Matt Mims. Ram fans remember that name and number. Mims is a 6’ senior guard for Cedar Rapids, Xavier. Matt led Xavier in scoring this season with 21 points per game, rebounds with 143, assists with 119 and steals with 66. Pretty impressive right?! The senior guard dropped a season high thirty-two points in the quarterfinals while knocking down 5-7 three pointers. Matt Mims has also received and accepted a scholarship to play basketball next year at South Dakota State University (Jackrabbits won the Summit League Championship last night). I wouldn’t be surprised to see Coach T.J. Otzelberger in Wells Fargo to see his future point guard play against the Rams.
Yesterday I got a chance to watch Mims in person for the first time. I was impressed. It can be rare to see a division one basketball talent around southwest Iowa. I always tell fans who ask me, if you have to guess if a player has D1 talent then usually the athlete is not. Matt Mims screamed D1 within the first three minutes of watching him live. He’s quick, his shooting form is effortless and can drive to the rim at will. Glenwood will need to slow him down to have a chance tomorrow.
#14 6’6” senior Jackson Joens is also a player to watch out for tomorrow. Joens season high is twenty-nine points and averages sixteen points this season. Jackson scored fourteen against Marion on Tuesday.
Xavier is a really good team. There is a reason coaches awarded Xavier (19-6) the number one seed. Their six losses were all against 4A schools (lost 47-54 vs. Waterloo West, lost 56-68 vs. C.R. Kennedy, lost 51-54 vs. C.R. Prairie, lost 57-61 vs. Dubuque, Senior, lost 58-64 vs. Cedar Falls and lost 49-54 vs. I.C. West.) Iowa City West and Cedar Falls both qualified for the Class 4A State Basketball Tournament. Iowa City West won their first round 62-50 over Muscatine while Cedar Falls will play Sioux City East at 12:00 pm today (3/7/18).
Xavier’s Projected Starters vs. Glenwood
#4 senior Gabe Lux 5’10”
#5 senior Matt Mims 6’
#14 senior Jackson Joens 6’6”
#22 junior Quinn Schulte 6’1”
#30 junior Kyle Moeder 6’3
Team Season Statistics for Xavier
Average 63.4 PPG
Xavier has allowed 1,356 points on the season while the Rams have allowed 1,198.
Glenwood matches up well with Xavier in my opinion. The matchup of the day will be Matt Mims against Glenwood’s defense. Mims and Jackson Joens score more than 58% of Xavier’s points per game. The entire state saw how good Glenwood’s defense can be by holding #1 scoring in Class 3A Norwalk twenty points under their average.
If the Rams can settle down early by working for good open shots, look for Glenwood to put pressure on #1 Xavier early. At the end of the day I think Glenwood is playing with a lot of confidence and the Rams will pull off the upset if they keep Xavier under sixty points.
Semifinal game prediction: Glenwood 63 Cedar Rapids, Xavier 59
Good luck Glenwood! The town will be there to support you, GO RAMS!!!
Game: March 8th
Location: Wells Fargo Arena, Des Moines, IA
T.V. Game Watch: Chicago Sports+, DIRECTV 665-1, DISHTV 447 SD, 9517 HD, HOPPER 41235, NBCSCH+
Live Streaming: http://www.ihssn.com/live-streaming.html