Licking your chops in anticipation of a regional-final rubber match between Monticello and Maquoketa Valley?
Don’t get ahead of yourself, says Scot Moenck.
“We’ve got to play great three nights just to get to the regional final, no questions asked,” said Moenck, girls’ basketball coach at Maquoketa Valley.
Class 2A regionals open Saturday, and the potential Region 5 collision course between the fifth-ranked Wildcats (19-2) and No. 8 Monticello (20-1) is the major storyline.
The teams split in the regular season (both winning at home). Monticello won the Tri-Rivers Conference title, its first league championship in school history.
Monticello opens at home Saturday against North Cedar (4-17). Maquoketa Valley kicks off at Delhi against Clayton Ridge (3-17), a team it defeated by 29 points in late November.
“I’m sure they’re a lot better now,” Moenck said. “Whenever we step in the gym, we always have a target on our back. Whenever somebody beats us, it’s a big win for them.”
North Linn (19-2), which shared second place in the Tri-Rivers with Maquoketa Valley, resides in Region 6. The Lynx host Jesup (4-17) on Saturday. No. 2 Roland-Story is the headliner in that region, which also contains Cedar Valley Conference champion Iowa City Regina (17-3).
The Regals host West Liberty (3-18).
The 1A brackets contain a few second-round games, including No. 11 North Tama (18-3) — the lone area 1A rated — hosting Cedar Falls NU High.