MANKATO — The St. Clair and Waseca basketball programs have been among Minnesota’s top high school fundraisers for Coaches vs. Cancer.

On Saturday, the girls basketball teams from those schools will play a nonconference game at Minnesota State’s Bresnan Arena as a reward for their fundraising dedication. The game will start at 12:30 p.m. as a prelude to Minnesota State’s men’s and women’s doubleheader against Minot State.

Rick Jeddeloh, the director of Coaches vs. Cancer in Minnesota, said he approached Minnesota State athletic director Kevin Buisman in October about arranging a high school game as part of the Mavericks’ cancer fundraiser.

“We were trying to spotlight some teams that have done well in their fundraisers,” said Jeddeloh, also an assistant coach at St. Clair. “Hopefully, we can continue this and grow it into more games in the future.”

St. Clair held its first Coaches vs. Cancer event in January of 2010, and it has become an annual fixture on the Cyclones’ schedule. Through a series of fundraising events by the boys and girls basketball teams, students and community supporters, St. Clair is annually in nationally near the top of the nation for high schools in fundraising totals.

In the history of the event, St. Clair has raised nearly $250,000, with around $20,000 more coming in from last weekend’s event.

“Our motto (for the cancer fundraiser) has been ‘playing a game you can’t lose,’” St. Clair coach Brian Noyes said. “We put a lot of time into our event, and it’s a nice reward for the girls to play on the big court at MSU. It’s a quality section opponent, which could be big for future playoff seedings, so it should be fun. It’s truly a game where we can’t lose.”

Waseca has been hosting a similar event since 2006, raising about $55,000. In addition to many fundraising activities, Waseca athletes do a Blitz Night, where they go around town to solicit donations and invite supporters to attend the game.

Jeddeloh also said that he has partnered with the Minnesota Timberwolves to hold Coaches vs. Cancer games. On Feb. 4, the St. Clair girls will play Triton at the Target Center.

Jeddeloh is hoping he can expand the Target Center games in the future, as well.

Gonzo Godfrey

Mankato Loyola senior Lawson Godfrey was on fire last Friday, scoring 41 points in a victory at Madelia.

He scored 31 points in the first half, making 13 of 15 shots, including 5 of 6 on 3-pointers. For the game, Godfrey was 17 of 21 from the field, with 6 of 7 on 3-pointers, and 1 of 2 free throws.

Godfrey, who is shooting 54% from the field, holds the team’s single-game scoring record of 48, which he set last season against Nicollet.

Games to watch

The Mankato East boys (12-2) get another good test, playing at Austin on Friday. The Cougars lead the Big Nine Conference at 9-1, with Austin and Northfield tied for second at 8-2. East averages 77.5 points, while Austin averages 72.5.

On Friday, the Waseca boys (12-3) play at Jackson County Central (8-5) in a game between Big South Conference East Division.

The Randolph boys play at Maple River on Friday. Maple River is 16-2, 10-0 in the Gopher Conference. Randolph is 10-6, 6-3 in league games.

Follow Chad Courrier on Twitter @ChadCourrier.

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