Boys Basketball: Kennedy's Fontana Gets 300th Win

By Jeff Johnson And Scott Saville, Reporters

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By Grant Burkhardt

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Bob Fontana put some perspective on the coaching milestone he reached Friday night. Getting 300 wins is nice and everything, but when it comes one day after Waukon girls’ coach Gene Klinge notched his 1,000th ...

“I don’t know why everyone is making such a big damn deal about this,” Fontana said. “I’ve got a hell of a long way to go to catch him.”

That being said, 300 is a nice round number, and the way Fontana’s Cedar Rapids Kennedy Cougars got it had to make him proud. It was superb defense and efficient offense that gave Kennedy a 47-32 win over Cedar Rapids Jefferson.

Signature Fontana basketball.

“Defensively, yes,” the coach said. “Shot selection, yes. Sure, we would have liked to have scored more points, but, hey, they had something to do with that. They had some long possessions. If they want to take 30, 45 seconds off the clock when we have the lead, that’s fine.”

Fontana is 300-196 in 21 years as a head coach, including a 227-129 record in 16 years at Kennedy. He began his coaching career at tiny Corwith-Wesley-Luverne in northern Iowa and came to Kennedy from Carlisle.

He had to wait a week and a half to celebrate, as his Cougars (10-6) lost three straight games. But they shot 63 percent in this one, holding Jeff’s leading scorer Jacob Olson to just two points, 14 under his average.

Kennedy limited Jefferson (9-8) to two points in the third quarter to extend a four-point lead to 13. Ky Kramer had a game-high 17 points for the J-Hawks, who shot just 30 percent.

“It’s an amazing feeling just to get a win after losing three in a row,” said Kennedy’s A.J. Carter, who had a team-high 12 points. “Then to have something that special to be a part of, too, is huge for us.”

Kennedy players and assistant coaches signed a basketball for Fontana following the game. It was Athletic Hall of Fame Night at the school as well, so this was all about the green and gold.

“The thing I’m proud of is when I came here, they said they needed discipline and structure, and that’s what I tried to provide,” Fontana said. “Ever since the first year, the kids have bought into what we want to do.”

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