North Mahaska’s regional final appearance a year ago and the wealth of junior talent returning this season has landed them a preseason sixth spot in Class 2A. Cedar Rapids Gazette sportswriter Jeff Linder released his ratings earlier this week.
Reigning champion Dike-New Hartford, who just completed an undefeated volleyball season with another crown, leads the way. They finished the 2022-23 campaign at 26-1. Class 2A state qualifiers Panorama (22-3) and Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont (24-1) hold down the second and third spots.
North Mahaska finished the 2022-23 campaign with a 20-4 mark and reached the Class 1A regional finals where they fell to Winfield-Mount Union 52-47. NM lost just two seniors from the team. They tied with Montezuma for the league crown at 13-1.
Coach L.E. Moore expects to have his entire starting lineup back from a year ago. Among the top contributors from a year ago are Breckyn Schilling, Sydney Andersen, Regan Grewe, Kayla Readshaw and Ally Steil. Others will also contribute as the season wears on.
North Mahaska opens the 2023-24 season bumping up a class in 2A. EBF is among the teams on the Warhawk schedule later in the season. NM opens the regular season on Tuesday, Nov. 28 when they host South Iowa Cedar League foe BGM.
Class 2A Preseason Gazette Rankings
1. Dike-New Hartford (26-1, 2A state champion)
2. Panorama (22-3, 2A state qualifier)
3. Eddyville EBF (24-1, 2A state qualifier)
4. Nodaway Valley (18-5, 2A regional semifinalist)
5. Iowa City Regina (21-5, 2A state qualifier)
6. North Mahaska (20-4, 1A regional finalist)
7. Aplington-Parkersburg (20-5, 2A state qualifier)
8. Treynor (21-3, 2A regional finalist)
9. Mapleton MVAOCOU (15-8, 2A regional semifinalist)
10. Westwood (21-2, 1A regional finalist)
The next five (alphabetic order): Central Lyon (24-1), Grand View Christian (15-7), Hudson (16-8), Rock Valley (10-11), Shenandoah (10-12).