What was normally a David (Glenwood) vs. Goliath (Harlan) match-up, tonight the 21-2 Glenwood Rams should be the favorite against the more historic 15-7 Harlan Cyclones. The history in this matchup goes deeper than just on the basketball court. Let’s start with Glenwood Ram head coach Curt Schulte. Schulte grew up in the Harlan area and graduated high school a Cyclone. Now Coach Schulte is a Ram, repping the black and gold. Next, Glenwood’s Activities Director Jeff Bissen. Bissen was a Harlan graduate as well. Jeff’s senior year his football and basketball teams each one the state title.
Tonight's game will be the third time since the 2013-14 season where Glenwood or Harlan will end the others’ season. The last time these two played in the postseason, Glenwood defeated Harlan 58-56 in the 2014-15 District Final at Abraham Lincoln. The time before that? February 3rd, 2014 when Harlan defeated Glenwood 54-29 in the substate final at Abraham Lincoln.
Fast forward to 2018. Glenwood went 2-0 against Harlan during the regular season. The Rams won 84-79 in Glenwood back on January 13th. Glenwood won that game even with Harlan shooting 58% from the floor and 53% from three point land. A big reason the Cyclones lost that game was shooting 9-17 from the free throw line. Glenwood shot 52% from the floor and knocked down 27-36 free throws. Game two was at Harlan where the Rams won 72-60 on February 2nd. Glenwood once again got to the free throw line against the Cyclones knocking down 19-25. The Rams shot 44% from the floor and only hit 5 of 19 three pointers in their twelve point win over Harlan. The Cyclones shot 42% from the floor, 40% from three point range and made 14-21 free throws in their twelve point loss against the Rams.
Seniors 6’2” Logan Klaassen, 6’4” Shane Chamberlain and 6’3” Deren Schmitz have scored Harlan’s 102 out of the 139 points against Glenwood this season. The Rams will need to slow them down in order to defeat the Cyclones tonight. Shane Chamberlain is a terrific basketball player. Chamberlain averages 19.2 ppg while shooting 52% from the floor and 42.2% from three point land. Chamberlain is second on the team in rebounds with 138 and first in steals with 36. Klaassen averages 14 ppg for the Cyclones. If Glenwood can keep Chamberlain and Klaassen under their averages, the Rams have a great shot tonight.
Harlan has four seniors in their starting lineup. These group of guys will not want their basketball careers to end tonight. Coach Osborn currently has 678 wins and 152 losses in his varsity coaching career and will look to make his 19th coaching appearance at the state tournament (most in the state) with a win over Glenwood.
Harlan has 23 state basketball tournament victories while Glenwood currently has zero.
For Glenwood, these Seniors and this team is on a mission to break almost every record in the books. One record that has yet to be set? Have a group of seniors make the state tournament twice in four years. Nate Mohr and Andrew Blum will look to be the first two Rams to ever accomplish this. Glenwood with a win tonight will also have the opportunity to be the first boys basketball team to ever win a game at the state tournament.
Final prediction - Glenwood wins 74-62. For whatever reason, the Abraham Lincoln gym brings magic to this group of Rams. From the one point loss last season against Atlantic this team has wanted to get to the state tournament. Tonight the boys will have their opportunity to do that.
Good luck boys! GO RAMS!
My predictions for Class 3A matchups tonight
Charles City vs. Waverly-Shell Rock @ Denver (Charles City)
Glenwood vs. Harlan @ Council Bluffs, Abraham Lincoln (Glenwood)
Marion vs. Assumption, Davenport @ U.S. Cellular Center (Davenport Assumption)
Mount Pleasant vs. Solon @ Muscatine (Mount Pleasant)
Norwalk vs. Winterset @ Waukee (Norwalk)
Oskaloosa vs. Carlisle @ Southeast Polk (Oskaloosa)
Sergeant Bluff-Luton vs. Bishop Heelan Catholic, Sioux City @ Tyson Events Center (SB-L)
Xavier, Cedar Rapids vs. South Tama County, Tama @ U.S. Cellular Center (Xavier)