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By Jim Powers

When you talk about the top girls basketball teams in the state of Missouri and in the nation, Incarnate Word Academy will always be at the top of the list. The Red Knights are shooting for their 50th straight win, spanning over the past two-and-a-half years, as IWA takes on Carondelet, Calif., at Stockton St. Mary’s Friday at 5:30 p.m. CST.

The last time the Red Knights tasted defeat was Feb. 28, 2020, as IWA fell to Rock Bridge in the championship game of the Webster Groves tournament. Since that loss, the Red Knights have won the Missouri Class Six title in 2021 with a 58-37 win over Webster Groves. IWA would have been in line to win the Class Five title in 2020, but the state final four was canceled due to COVID-19. 

“Honestly, I never would have known about the streak until someone in the media mentioned it,” IWA coach Dan Rolfes said in a recent interview with Fox 2 sports. “I know that it is very cliché, but I am just worried about our next game. Once you hear about 48, 49 games in a row, you know, that is pretty special.”

The Red Knights are looking to win their fifth consecutive state title this season. IWA is 9-0 and won the Visitation Holiday Classic with a 69-47 victory over defending Class Five state champion Whitfield.

Natalie Potts leads the IWA attack with 17.3 points per game while grabbing 7.6 rebounds per contest. Saniah Tyler adds to the attack with 13.4 points per contest and hands out nearly three assists per game.