CAMANCHE, Iowa — Dakota Soenksen had an inkling this kind of performance was coming in warmups.
“I felt something different,” he said. “All of the fundamentals in my shot felt like they were there.”
It resulted in a record-breaking 3-point performance Monday night.
The 6-foot-3 senior knocked down a school-record nine trifectas and scored a game-high 35 points as Class 2A ninth-ranked Camanche raced past Clinton Prince of Peace 88-65 on its home floor.
Soenksen buried his first six 3-point attempts and had 20 points in the game’s first 5 minutes, 54 seconds. He finished 13 of 24 from the field and just one point off his season high.
“A hand in the face is good defense, but to him he could have been shooting with his eyes closed and it was going in tonight,” Prince of Peace senior standout Seth Moeller said. “He’s a very talented shooter. When he’s on, he’s on.”
Given Soenksen leads the state with 50 treys and hits on almost 40 percent of his tries, an output like this wasn’t a major surprise.
Still, nearly half of his makes came from beyond 25 feet.
“His range is pretty much half-court,” teammate Dylan Hundley said following a 17-point, 16-rebound outing.
In fact, when Soenksen does find himself in a slump, Camanche coach Josh Davis offers some unorthodox advice.
“We tell him to scoot back,” Davis said. “It just takes the thought process out of it more. The further back you are, the more you’ve got to use your legs and wrist.”
Prince of Peace (7-3) took three first-quarter timeouts to try and cool off Soenksen. Nothing worked.
The Indians (11-1) tallied 34 points in the opening period and 52 by halftime to build a 23-point margin.
“We just have a lot of weapons,” said Davis, whose club has made 25 treys in the last two games. “We’re able to get teams a lot of times to play at a high pace so we get more chances at the basket. Our rallying cry all year has been offensive rebounding.
Get breaking news sent instantly to your inbox
“It isn’t because we’re big, but the kids believe getting in there and flying after the ball.”
Camanche has won eight in a row and exceeded 70 points in nine of its 12 games.
While Soenksen and Hundley were the top scorers Monday, the Indians have two other players averaging at least 12 points a game in Cameron Soenksen and Dev Patel.
“It is hard to guard us one through five,” Hundley said. “We all can shoot the ball on most nights. And if we’re off, we can penetrate the paint really well and find the open shooter.”
Prince of Peace narrowed the deficit to 15 points in the second half but failed to draw any closer. The Irish have lost three games this year to schools a combined 29-2.
Moeller finished with a team-high 33 points and Devin Bilek chipped in 16.
“We knew Camanche was really talented,” Moeller said. “Even down 20-some, we had to keep playing every possession.
“I really feel with our schedule we can clear the board from here. We’re just looking to build for that state trip every game.”