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Tuesday, April 24, 2018
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Kirkwood Community College - Cedar Rapids, Iowa

No. 2 Eagles survive upset bid at tourney

HARRISON, Ark. - The Kirkwood Eagles breathed a big sigh of relief Wednesday night and moved into the semifinals of the NJCAA Division II national tournament.

The second-ranked Eagles squandered most of a 16-point lead but survived an upset bid by seventh-ranked North Arkansas, 65-61, in the quarterfinals of the women's tourney at Pioneer Pavilion.

Kirkwood (33-3) will face third-ranked Highland (31-0) in the semifinals Friday night at 6 p.m.

Kirkwood led 45-29 midway through the third quarter, but the Eagles committed a string of turnovers that helped North Arkansas storm back into the ballgame at 45-43 early in the fourth period with a 14-0 run.

The Pioneers, playing before a big crowd on their home floor, had all the momentum in their favor, but the Eagles never got rattled and found a way to win their 23th straight game and hand North Arkansas its only loss at home this season.

"They had a great crowd, a great atmosphere," said Kirkwood Coach Kim Muhl, who is seeking his eighth national title. "They hit shots that were tough shots, I thought.

"We survived it," he said. "I thought our kids showed a lot of resilience. Just enough to win."

Christmas Puok hit a pair of big 3-pointers to give Kirkwood a little breathing room at 52-44 with 6:15 left and it was still an eight-point game at 60-52 when Awal Ajak scored for the Eagles with 1:45 remaining.

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No. 2 KCC women roll at national tourney

HARRISON, Ark. - The Kirkwood Eagles jumped to a 24-2 lead after the first quarter Tuesday afternoon and crushed Gogebic Community College, 95-56, in the opening round of the NJCAA Division II national tournament.

The second-ranked Eagles (32-3) will face North Arkansas College (20-6) in the quarterfinals Wednesday at 8 p.m.

North Arkansas is the host school and the entire tournament is being played on its home court at Pioneer Pavilion in Harrison, Ark., where they have a strong following.

"It will be packed here tomorrow night," said Kirkwood Coach Kim Muhl. "It will be rocking, because they're pretty excited about them playing. It will be a wild one, I think."

North Arkansas won its regional title to earn a spot in the national tournament as the No. 7 seed.

"They had to win the right to get here and they did," said Muhl. "It's not going to be easy, because they play very well here. I'm telling you, it's going to be packed.

"They had a large crowd today and the gym was full, so I can't imagine at 8 o'clock how many people will crawl out from under the rocks."

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No. 14 Eagles win eight games in Florida

WINTER HAVEN - The 14th-ranked Kirkwood baseball team finished a remarkable trip to Florida on Friday with two more impressive victories.

The Eagles dumped Rowan College, 8-1, in their first outing and rolled by Monroe Community College 19-6, in their second contest.

Kirkwood compiled an 8-1 record on its spring trip and returns home with a 14-3 overall mark.

Ellison Hanna went 4-for-5 with a double, home run and five RBIs in the 19-6 victory over Monroe. Taylor Jackson was 2-for-3 with a homer, three RBIs and three runs.

Korry Howell, Izaya Fullard, Cal Clark, Ross Kramer and Chili Moseley all had two hits against Monroe. Howell scored four times, Fullard had two doubles and Moseley drove in two runs. Kirby Kerr also had two RBIs.

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Halverson tosses no-hitter for Kirkwood

FAYETTE, Mo. - Natalie Halvorson tossed a no-hitter for the Kirkwood Eagles Thursday in an 8-0 victory over Central Methodist in the second game of a doubleheader in Fayette, Mo.

Halvorson, a freshman from Cedar Rapids Prairie, struck out 10 batters and walked two while raising her record to 9-2.

DoniRae Mayhew also pitched a strong game for the third-ranked Eagles in a 7-1 victory in the opener. Mayhew (9-0) did not allow an earned run and had seven strikeouts with no walks.

Kirkwood raised its overall record to 20-2 with the sweep.

Monika Bevans went 3-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI in the 7-1 victory in the opener. Lauren Kuch went 2-for-4 with two doubles and two RBIs. Rachel Stewart was 2-for-5 with a double and two RBIs. Kenady Waugh and Jessi Butler also picked up RBIs in the first game.

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No. 14 KCC baseball wins twice

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. - The red-hot Kirkwood baseball team won a squeaker and a laugher Thursday.

The 14th-ranked Eagles scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh for a 5-4 walk-off victory over the College of Rhode Island in their first game in Winter Haven, Fla.

Ellison Hanna scored the game-winning run on a wild pitch as Ross Kramer drew a walk.

Kirkwood (12-3) rolled to a 17-1 victory over Dakota County Technical College in its second game Thursday with a strong effort on the pitching mound by Cal Stalzer.

Korry Howell went 2-for-4 with two doubles and two runs in the 5-4 victory over Rhode Island. Taylor Jackson socked a solo homer, Hanna scored twice and Kramer picked up an RBI.

Will Rodruck pitched three innings in relief for the victory, allowing no hits and one unearned run with four strikeouts. Cameron Leff tossed the first four innings for the Eagles.

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No. 14 KCC baseball smashes foe, 22-0

VERO BEACH, Fla. - Ross Kramer picked a good day to pitch for the Kirkwood baseball team.

The 14th-ranked Eagles erupted for 14 runs in the fourth inning Wednesday and demolished the Ontario Nationals, 22-0, in five innings on their spring trip to Florida.

Kramer tossed a one-hit shutout for Kirkwood (10-3). He struck out eight batters and walked two.

Korry Howell, Izaya Fullard and Manny Olutunde had three hits for the Eagles. Howell, Fullard, Ellison Hanna and Max McCay had three RBIs.

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No. 3 KCC softball splits twinbill

MIAMI, Okla. - Two of the top junior college softball teams in the country split a doubleheader Wednesday in Oklahoma with both teams scoring the same number of runs.

Kirkwood nipped Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College in the first game, 7-6, and the hosts trimmed the Eagles in the nightcap, 4-3.

Kirkwood is ranked No. 3 in the NJCAA Division II poll with an 18-2 record. Northeastern Oklahoma A&M is ranked No. 13 in NJCAA Division I.

Rachel Stewart went 2-for-4 with a double, two-run homer and four RBIs in the first game. Lauren Kuch was 2-for-3 with a homer and two runs.

Audra Bridenstine was 2-for-3 in the opener with two runs and an RBI. Skylar Ryan also drove in a run. DoniRae Mayhew pitched six innings for the victory and Natalie Halvorson tossed the final inning for a save.

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KCC gets No. 2 seed for national tourney

Defending national champion Kirkwood was seeded second for the 16-team national tournament in pairings released Tuesday morning by the NJCAA.

Coach Kim Muhl's second-ranked Eagles (31-3) meet No. 15 seed Gogebic Community College (17-13) out of Ironwood, Mich. at 3 p.m. next Tuesday in the first round at Pioneer Pavillion in Harrison, Ark.

A win in the opener would move Kirkwood into the quarterfinals at 8 p.m. on Wednesday against the North Arkansas/Bryant & Stratton, Wisc. winner.

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Mayhew stars as KCC softball rolls

HARRISON, Ark. - DoniRae Mayhew belted three home runs and drove in nine runs Monday as the Kirkwood Eagles slammed North Arkansas, 14-4 and 26-3, to sweep a doubleheader in Arkansas.

Mayhew went 7-for-8 in the twinbill with three doubles, three homers and seven runs scored. She was 4-for-4 with all three homers in the 14-4 victory and was also the winning pitcher.

Rachel Stewart went 5-for-10 in the doubleheader with a three-run homer and four RBIs. Skylar Ryan was 5-for-6 with two doubles, three RBIs and three runs.

Hannah Mausser was 4-for-4 with three runs and three RBIs. She also pitched an inning for the first time this season. Lauren Kuch was 4-for-5 with a double, three RBIs and six runs.

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KCC baseball falls to Indian River

FORT PIERCE, Fla. - The Kirkwood baseball team suffered its first loss on its spring trip to Florida Monday with a 6-2 setback to Indian River State College in Fort Pierce.

Peyton Long pitched 4 2/3 innings and was touched for four runs, but the Eagles committed four errors in the ballgame and all of the runs against Long were unearned.

Korry Howell and Joel Thompson collected RBIs for Kirkwood (9-3). The Eagles had only six hits in the contest.

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