Prep of the Week: Dowling’s Nick McMurray

Senior guard Nick McMurray has led the second-ranked Dowling Catholic boys’ basketball team to a 10-1 record through Jan. 20. The Maroons won their first 10 games before dropping a 65-54 decision at Cedar Rapids Xavier on Jan. 17.

McMurray is averaging a team-high 14.6 points per game. He leads the Maroons with 18 3-point goals and has also dished out 40 assists.

Here is some inside info on McMurray:

What has been the key to the team’s fast start?

Great team chemistry and leadership from the returning guys. Also because of how deep our team is, not only do we have plenty of guys that can come in and impact the game, but our practices are very competitive and help us prepare for playing tough games.

What has been the highlight of the season thus far?

Our win against Waukee and the buzzer-beater win against Dubuque Wahlert.

Have you been surprised by the team’s success?

Not at all. We knew we liked the group of guys this year and that our chemistry would be great, and that has helped us get off to the good start this season.

Coach O’Connor says that you’ve been a catalyst for the squad. Have you tried to become more of a leader this season?

Absolutely. We lost a lot of seniors last year, and myself along with the other four seniors (Ben Olson, Eric Fardal, TJ Strain and Will Schmitz), we’ve really tried to lead the younger kids and help them adapt to the varsity level, while also showing them how things work in our program.

Do you have a favorite spot on the floor that you like to shoot from?

I would say top of the key.

Who has been the toughest player for you to defend this year?

We’ve played a lot of quality teams, and I’ve guarded a lot of really good players, but if I had to pick one I would say Adam McDermott from Xavier.

Your team has a huge game tonight against No. 5 Ankeny Centennial, the top defensive team in Class 4A. What will be the key to beating the Jaguars?

Centennial is a very good team, but definitely rebounding, playing together and playing our game. It has to be a collective team effort on both ends of the floor.

Do you think your team can win a state title?

Yes, we feel that we can play with anyone in the state. We need to stay focused and together, and I think we will be tough to beat.

Plans for next year?

I’m committed to Johnson County down in Kansas City to play baseball.

What do you plan to study?

Something in business.

Who is your pick to win the Super Bowl?

Patriots! Tom Brady will lead them to a 31-24 victory.

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