Sunday Funday – Iowa Girls Basketball History

bpm-questions-you-should-ask-your-bpms-vendor1Well, that time of year comes once again. On a Friday evening, I climb into my PJs and the next thing I know is that the TV is on and I am watch some basketball tournament is flickering right before my eyes. Yep, it is the high holy days of basketball once more. Beginning with the fun of the Iowa Girls tournament on to the Final Four which will be played in some football stadium once again.

For those new to Iowa – and by new I mean less than 30 years – let me try to explain what Iowa Girls basketball once was. It was a quirky game where there were actually two half court 3-on-3 games going at once. Noted Iowa wit, Donald Kaul, had famous on-going hate affair with the game. There was never anything like anywhere else.

So for all you old-timers out there, here are some questions about the one and only Iowa six-on-six girl’s basketball.

1) In the 6-on-6 game a team would consist of:
a) 3 shooters and 3 guarders
b) 3 offenders and 3 defenders
c) 3 forwards and 3 guards
d) 2 centers, 2 forwards and 2 guards

2) One quirky rule in the 6-on-6 game was:
a) the two dribble then shoot or pass rule.
b) the no shot inside the lane rule
c) the 3 foot guard buffer rule (must leave 3 feet between you and the person you guard)
d) the 40 point rule (fall behind 40 points and lose)

3) What major network sports show tried to buy the rights to broadcast the IGHSAU tournament?
a) CBS Saturday!
b) ABc Wide World of Sports
c) NBC The Sporting Life
d) Fox Focus on Sports

4) The culture around the girls’ game was due in part to the fact that:
a) every girl on the team had to play a minimum number of minutes
b) Parents only were allowed at games
c) Girls basketball was played mostly in the large schools
d) Girls basketball was played mostly in small farming towns

5) The first Iowa girls basketball game was played about what year?
a) 1910
b) 1924
c) 1898
d) 1933

6) The Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union formed and held its first tournament in
a) 1910
b) 1926
c) 1932
d) 1946

7) Let’s talk about some of the players. This girl was drafted in the NBA draft in 1969, the only woman ever drafted by the NBA.
a) Lynn Lorenzen
b) Jeanette Olsen
c) Denise Long
d) Katie Abrahamson

8) 6 player basketball slowly gave way to 5 player basketball. When did the 5 player game start in Iowa?
a) 1978
b) 1984
c) 1989
d) 1993

9) The highest scorer in 6 girl basketball came from the small town of Ventura as the 6 player game was slowly giving way to the 5 girl game. Who was she?

a) Denise Long
b) Lynn Lorenzen
c) Jeanette Olsen
d) Lisa Brinkmeyer

10) the final 6 player Iowa girls basketball tournament took place in what year?
a) 1984
b) 1987
c) 1993
d) 2001

For those of you who remember there was nothing like the 6 player game. Not only the games, but the small town atmosphere, the weather that seemed to show up every March and of course some of the diminutive names the girls teams were saddled with. My favorites included the Cattlefeederettes and the Bullettes (better than Cow, I guess.)

You shot, did you score? Let’s see!

1) c) 3 forwards, 3 guards

2) a) the 2 dribble rule. Strangely the girls could cover a lot of room in 2 dribbles

3) b) ABC Wide World Of Sports wanted to show the tournament throughout the country, but the IGHSAU feared losing control of the tourney

4) d) the 6 player game was almost totally played in small farming towns which would shut down if their team went to state

5) c) around 1898

6) b) 1926 with Hampton as the champion

7) c) Denise Long. She was the highest scorer at that time

8) b) 1984

9) b) Lynn Lorenzen

10) c) 1993 with Hubbard-Radcliff as the final champion.

Well time to warm up the TV. BTW – during the height of the 6 player game over 70% of Iowa girls were involved in playing basketball. Much of this was before the school consolidations. So in many small towns, every girls played on the team.

About Dave Bradley

retired in West Liberty
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