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Friday, March 22, 2019
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Metro Sports Report

KCC men earn No. 1 seed for regional

IOWA FALLS - The Kirkwood men's basketball team picked up two nice prizes in Iowa Falls Saturday afternoon.

The fifth-ranked Eagles crushed Ellsworth, 89-59, in the final game of the regular season to grab a share of the ICCAC conference title and earn the No. 1 seed for the regional tournament.

Kirkwood began the week in second place in the league standings behind NIACC, but NIACC lost to DMACC in its final game of the season to give the Eagles a chance to tie for the title.

Kirkwood and NIACC tied for the championship with 12-2 league records, but the Eagles won the tiebreaker based on power ratings.

Bryan Petersen collected his 150th victory as the head coach at Kirkwood on Saturday. He has a 150-38 record at his alma mater.

The Eagles (24-4) will host No. 8 seed Southwestern (3-26) in the quarterfinals of the regional tournament Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Johnson Hall. If Kirkwood keeps winning, it will host the semifinals on Thursday and the regional championship game on Saturday.

Kirkwood was the No. 1 seed for the regional tournament last year, but fell short and failed to reach the national tournament. "Hopefully we can take advantage of that this year," said Petersen. "Last year we didn't."

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KCC women share conference title

IOWA FALLS - The Kirkwood women's basketball team finished in a tie for the ICCAC conference title on Saturday, but the Eagles had to settle for the No. 2 seed in the regional tournament next week.

The fourth-ranked Eagles topped Ellsworth, 87-61, in the final game of the regular season.

Kirkwood and NIACC finished with identical 15-1 records in the conference and traded six-point wins, but NIACC won the tiebreaker on its overall point differential against the other teams in the league.

NIACC outscored conference opponents by 458 points and Kirkwood outscored them by 397, giving NIACC the tiebreaker by 61 points.

Kirkwood (25-6) will host No. 7 seed Southwestern (11-17) in the opening round of the regional tournament Wednesday night. The Eagles whipped Southwestern by 43 and 48 points in their two meetings.

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Mount Mercy hosts Heart opener

There's good news and not-so-good news for the Mount Mercy men's basketball team in the Heart of America Conference tournament.

Here's the good news: The Mustangs drew the No. 8 seed and will host No. 9 Graceland in the opening round Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Hennessey Recreation Center.

Here's the not-so-good news: If the Mustangs defeat Graceland, they'll face top-ranked Benedictine in Atchison, Kan., in the quarterfinals on Thursday. Benedictine finished a perfect 24-0 in the conference this year and is 14-0 at home.

Mount Mercy finished in a four-way tie for seventh place in the Heart of America Conference with an 11-13 record with Culver-Stockton, Graceland and MidAmerica Nazarene. All four teams made the 10-team playoffs and are seeded No. 7, No. 8, No. 9 and No. 10 on tiebreakers.

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Vander Poel takes 5th at nationals

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Kathryn Vander Poel of Mount Mercy finished fifth in the 800 meter run at the NAIA Indoor National Championships on Saturday.

Vander Poel, a senior from Bakersfield, Calif., was clocked in 2 minutes, 16.39 seconds. She finished less than two seconds behind the winner.

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Mount Mercy baseball splits pair

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Tito Berdecia belted a home run on Saturday to help Mount Mercy top Evangel, 7-4, in the second game of their Heart of America Conference doubleheader.

Evangel rallied for a 5-4 victory in the first game by scoring two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Berdecia, hitting in the cleanup spot, drove in two runs in the 7-4 victory. Evan Jackson was 2-for-4 and scored twice. Chili Moseley also had two hits and Nick Sueppel drove in two runs.

Blake Willenborg allowed only two earned runs in four innings for the victory in Game 1.

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