WHO, WHAT, WHERE: Lake Mills plays Marquette Catholic tonight

As we get set for the Lake Mills vs. Marquette Catholic game tonight on KIOW and, you might wonder where Marquette Catholic is or who they are. Some conversations might have been: are they good?

Located on the shores of the Mississippi River, the Roman Catholic school is in Bellevue, Iowa. With a population of roughly 2,200, Bellevue is located 220 miles from Wells Fargo Arena, 232 miles from Lake Mills, and about 24 miles south of Dubuque.

The school was founded in 1957, when St. Joseph’s, Bellevue, and Holy Rosary schools consolidated to form the Marquette Catholic Mohawks. In 2020, they announced they would continue to use the Mohawk nickname but not use Native American branding. However, recently, they announced a new logo and the name change to The Defenders.

They last made the state tournament in 2006, when they lost in the 1A title game to George Little Rock 49-47. This is the ninth time in school history they’ve made the tournament. They made their first appearance in 1993, falling in the tournament’s opening round to Pomeroy-Palmer, but after that, the first round was easy for them.

They made the semifinals in ’97, ’00, ’01, ’03, and ’04 before finally reaching the finals in 2006. They also made an appearance in 2002 but lost in the opening round. In those days, if teams won in the opening round and lost in the semifinals, they would play a consultation 3rd/4th place game. They finished third in ’97, ’01, and ’04, while they finished fourth in ’00 and ’03.

3rd-year coach Isaac Sturm leads the Defenders, who are 26-1 on the season.

Spencer Roeder has scored over 420 points this year, averaging 16 points a night. Eli Scott adds another 11.5 ppg. Kannon Still has made 51 three-pointers this season but was 0-4 in the opening-round win against the Rebels.

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