CEDAR RAPIDS — Cedar Rapids Prairie Coach James Moses sees a lot of himself in senior Tom Eilers. Like the former Hawkeye, Eilers never saw a shot he didn’t like.
Eilers led all scorers with 17 points, including five 3-pointers, in Prairie’s 45-31 victory Tuesday night at Cedar Rapids Xavier.
“They did the little things themselves, and they earned it,” Moses said.“It’s a great win for them.”
After four 3-pointers and 14 points from Eilers in the first quarter, the Hawks stepped up the defensive pressure in the second, holding Xavier to two points as a 16-14 lead ballooned to 30-16 by halftime.
“This was a crucial game for our substate seedings,” Eilers said.“It was nice to get out to a big lead, and (we) really relied on our defense later.”
Xavier (7-6, 3-5 MVC) ended the third quarter on a 7-0 run to pull within 10, but Eilers provided the final dagger with 4:05 to go when his fifth 3-pointer sent the lead to 45-29.
“There was no question that Tom could score, and there’s no question of where he can shoot,” Moses said.
Senior point guard Jace Hanna added 11 points for Prairie (5-9, 4-5 MVC), which moved past Xavier in the Valley Division standings.
“Us as coaches, we’re proud because we know what we’re capable of doing,” Moses said.“Tonight we just seemed to just come together.”
Trey Sampson led the Saints with 10 points, his 12th double-figure game this season.
Friday, Xavier is at Cedar Falls and Prairie plays host to Iowa City West.