Comet teams take to the air during Orange and Black Blowout
By John Burbridge
CHARLES CITY — One of the common pet peeves of coaches — and fans, too — is players standing around on offense.
If anything, the newly installed 35-second shot clock for high school play in Iowa will likely encourage more motion.
And up-and-down open-court action.
And maybe a slam-dunk or two.
Charles City hosted its annual Orange and Black Blowout on Friday featuring the Comet boys and girls basketball programs.
There was no admission charge, but those attending were encouraged to make a free-will monetary donation and/or donate a canned or boxed food item in support of Project Rise.
Either way, the near half-capacity crowd — one side of the bleachers were retracted to make room for several spectator contests in between the scrimmages — got their “donations” worth.
Led by returning All-Northeast Iowa Conference senior guard/forward Chase Low, the Comet boys team put on a spectacular performance. Low and junior transfer Kam Mestas electrified the audience with several All-Star Weekend Slam Dunk Contest throw-downs made more impressive by the aerial feats being done against live-game defenses.
There weren’t too many slam dunks during the girls scrimmage, but with Comet co-coaches Rusty Rogotske and David Rottinghaus running a taxing full-court drill before the scrimmage, the Comets look to have the stamina and athleticism to get up and down the court.
Also, some of the Comets’ returning letter-winners looked to have developed more offensive moves near the basket.
The Comet girls opened the season the following Saturday and lost to Waterloo East on the road 72-27.
The Comet girls will host Sumner-Fredericksburg Tuesday with the tip-off at 6:15 p.m. in Comet Gym — there will be no preceding junior varsity game.
The Comet boys will open the season on the road Nov. 29 at Dike New-Hartford.
Project RISE is a student-led mentoring and tutoring program that also has a closet and a food pantry available for all Charles City Middle School and High School students. The pantry is also accessible to the community.
Project RISE started in 2014 as a small mentoring and tutoring program between middle and high school students.