Clear Lake girls are an early season favorite

(Above) Head Coach Bart Smith looks on as Brooklyn Eden (10) and Jaden Ainley run through drills during a recent basketball practice.  -Reporter photo by Chris Barragy

The Clear Lake girls basketball team is an early season favorite in Class 3A.

The 2021 Preseason Iowa Girls Basketball Rankings released last week by the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union have the Lions ranked fifth.  Unity Christian (25-2), which eliminated Clear Lake in last year’s Class 3A State semi-final game and went on to win the State title, has the top rating.  Ballard (24-1), West Lyon (24-2) and Cherokee (23-1) are in the second, third and fourth positions.  Ballard was the Class 4A champion last year; West Lyon was the Class 3A runner-up; and Cherokee qualified, but did not advance out of the 3A field of eight.

The Lions, who made it to State in 2021 for the sixth time in eight years, graduated five seniors from their 2020-21 team.  Five juniors on that team and a full slate of underclassmen who gained valuable playing experience last season are back and determined to carry on Clear Lake’s winning tradition.

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