Sunday, April 22, 2018
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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Kirkwood Community College - Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Howell leads KCC baseball into new year

When Korry Howell was selected in the 19th round of the Major League draft last June as a freshman, it looked like the Kirkwood baseball team would need a new shortstop for the 2018 campaign.

Fortunately for the Eagles, Howell had a different idea and Kirkwood Coach Todd Rima has never stopped smiling.

Howell declined to sign with the Kansas City Royals and will be starting for Kirkwood when it opens the season with a four-game series at Johnson County Community College this weekend.

The opener is set for Friday at 2 p.m., with a doubleheader Saturday and a single game Sunday.

"I think Korry wants to continue to develop and feels that college is important to him, his education is important to him," Rima said before leaving for the road trip to Kansas. "I think he also believes that he's a guy that with another year of development could go a lot higher in the draft. Now he's got an unbelievable option."

Howell can sign a pro contract after he's drafted again this June, or he could honor his commitment to the Iowa Hawkeyes and go play for Rick Heller in Iowa City next year as a junior.



No. 2 Eagles clinch tie for title

The Kirkwood women's basketball team has five sophomores in the starting lineup who helped the Eagles win the national title last year.

Their next five players are darn good, too.

The second-ranked Eagles got another big boost from their reserves Wednesday night and dumped Southeastern, 82-57, to clinch at least a tie for the ICCAC conference title.

Kirkwood has a three-game lead over NIACC with three games left in the regular season. The Eagles swept the season series from NIACC, so even if the race ends in a tie - which it won't - the Eagles have already clinched the No. 1 seed for the regional.

Coach Kim Muhl has a deep and talented roster, from top to bottom. Not only did the Kirkwood reserves smoke the SCC subs 49-7 in bench points Wednesday, they also outscored their own starters 49-33.

It would be interesting to see what would happen if Kirkwood's starting lineup played the No. 2 unit in practice, especially if they took it seriously for 40 minutes.

"I think the next-5 would beat the top-5," said freshman Mackenzie Jenkins, who's part of that No. 2 group.



No. 6 Eagles roll to 13th win in row

Kyle Arrington dunked in 17 points Tuesday night as the sixth-ranked Kirkwood Eagles cruised to a 92-47 victory over the Mount Mercy junior varsity at Johnson Hall.

Arrington, a 6-foot-10 freshman, collected four dunks in the first half over the shorter Mustangs. He finished by making 8 of 10 shots from the field in 17 minutes.

Kirkwood raised its record to 21-4 overall with its 13th straight victory.

Chris King and Jay Small contributed 12 points apiece for the Eagles. Carlo Marble had 10 points. LJ Stansbury and Semaj Ray scored nine points. Justin Storey finished with eight points.

Bailey Kale dished out 11 assists. Ray grabbed nine rebounds. Arrington and Small had eight rebounds.



Waugh sparks No. 7 Eagles to victories

DAVENPORT - Kenady Waugh went 6-for-7 with six RBIs Sunday as the seventh-ranked Kirkwood softball team won two more games at the Winter Dome Tournament in Davenport.

Waugh went 2-for-3 and drove in two runs when the Eagles defeated Southeastern, 9-1, in their first game. She then went 4-for-4 with four RBIs in a 10-0 victory over John Wood.

Kirkwood won all four of its games at the tournament and outscored its opponents, 32-1, with three shutouts.

Natalie Halvorson pitched all five innings in the 9-1 verdict over Southeastern. She allowed five hits with six strikeouts and no walks.

Hannah Mausser went 3-for-3 with three RBIs against Southeastern. DoniRae Mayhew was 3-for-4. Rachel Stewart and Lauren Kuch had two hits.



Kirkwood men clinch tie for title

Kirkwood Coach Bryan Petersen was worried about his team's mental toughness back in December when the Eagles stumbled into the Christmas break with an 8-4 record.

The surging Eagles have not lost a game since then and Petersen is not worried anymore.

The sixth-ranked Eagles rallied for an exciting 80-77 victory over Iowa Lakes Saturday at Johnson Hall to clinch at least a tie for the ICCAC title with their 12th straight win.

Kirkwood has a three-game lead over Iowa Lakes and Southwestern with three games left in the regular season. Everyone else has been eliminated from the race.

There's no question about Kirkwood's mental toughness now after the Eagles rallied from an 11-point deficit.

"I feel like we've really grown up in the last month," said Petersen. "When adversity has hit, we're still staying together and focused on the next possession."

Iowa Lakes socked the Eagles with a 21-2 burst in the first half to grab a 38-27 lead, but Kirkwood responded with a 17-4 burst of its own to take a 44-42 edge at intermission.



No. 2 KCC women win 14th straight

The graduating sophomores on the Kirkwood women's basketball team were honored after their choppy victory over Iowa Lakes on Saturday, but otherwise there was not a whole lot to celebrate at Johnson Hall.

It took the second-ranked Eagles more than seven minutes to make their first field goal in a sluggish 59-44 outing that lacked passion and execution for most of the afternoon.

"That was an ugly one," Kirkwood Coach Kim Muhl acknowledged.

Pretty or not, the Eagles raised their records to 24-3 overall and 10-0 in the conference with their 14th win a row. The Eagles own a three-game lead in the ICCAC standings with four games remaining as they march toward another league title.

Muhl was happy to leave the gym with a 15-point victory considering the circumstances on Sophomore Day.

"It's hard when it's snowing and they're worried about their parents getting here. They lose focus," he said.



KCC softball begins with 2 shutouts

DAVENPORT - The seventh-ranked Kirkwood softball team began the 2018 season by collecting a pair of shutouts at the Winter Dome Tournament in Davenport on Saturday.

The Eagles blanked the Saint Ambrose junior varsity, 7-0, in their first outing and topped Waubonsee, 6-0, in the second game.

DoniRae Mayhew pitched five innings in the first game for Kirkwood. She allowed three hits with seven strikeouts and one walk. Alli Sprague tossed the last two innings to complete the five-hit shutout.

Audra Bridenstine collected three RBIs in the victory over Saint Ambrose. Sonya McCormick, a transfer from Iowa Central, had two hits and two RBIs in her first game with the Eagles.

Natalie Halvorson, a freshman from Cedar Rapids Prairie, pitched a complete game in the 6-0 verdict over Waubonsee. She allowed only four hits with nine strikeouts and one walk.

Last Updated on Sunday, 18 February 2018 05:56



Kirkwood softball begins year at No. 7

Their two-time National Player of the Year is now patrolling the outfield at Iowa State. Their All-American pitcher, an All-American catcher, an All-American left fielder and two other all-Region selections are gone from last year's club as well.

Despite losing all that talent, Kirkwood softball coach Joe Yegge does not think the Eagles are rebuilding as they enter the 2018 campaign. Reloading is more like it.

"I hate to use the word rebuilding," he said, "because we think we have enough tradition here that we're never rebuilding."

It's hard to argue.

Yegge has compiled a formidable mark of 488-99 in 10 years at Kirkwood. That includes eight ICCAC conference titles, five regional titles, five district titles and five trips to the NJCAA Division II World Series.

The Eagles have 13 freshmen on the team and only six sophomores, so it's a young ballclub. And there are definitely are big shoes to fill.



Wilson lifts No. 2 Eagles at buzzer

MASON CITY - Tay Wilson hit a 15-footer with one second remaining Wednesday night to snap a 68-68 tie and give the second-ranked Kirkwood Eagles a riveting 70-68 victory over 13th-ranked NIACC in an ICCAC conference game in Mason City.

The win gave the Kirkwood women a commanding three-game lead in the conference standings over NIACC and DMACC with five games left in the season.

Kirkwood led NIACC by three points, 68-65, with time dwindling, but NIACC hit a long 3-pointer from about 28 feet to tie the game at 68-68 with eight seconds left.

Kirkwood Coach Kim Muhl called a timeout and instructed his players to feed Arika Wooldridge near the basket. Wooldridge got the ball and fed Wilson near the elbow of the foul line for the game-winning shot.

The Eagles raised their records to 23-3 overall and 9-0 in the conference with their 13th straight victory. NIACC fell to 19-6 overall and 6-3 in the league.

Kirkwood has won its nine conference games by an average of 23.8 points, but NIACC has given the Eagles their tightest games of the ICCAC campaign by far. Kirkwood won by nine points, 68-59, in Cedar Rapids earlier this season before the two-point squeaker Wednesday night.



Wilson powers No. 6 Eagles by NIACC

MASON CITY - Doug Wilson scored 27 points and grabbed eight rebounds Wednesday night as the sixth-ranked Kirkwood Eagles dumped NIACC, 78-49, in an ICCAC conference game in Mason City.

The Eagles raised their records to 19-4 overall and 8-0 in the league with their 11th straight win. Kirkwood leads the ICCAC standings by two games with four games left in the regular season.

The Eagles can clinch at least a tie for the league title Saturday when they host Iowa Lakes, which sits in second place in the conference with a 6-2 record.

Chris King popped in five 3-pointers and contributed 17 points for Kirkwood. LJ Stansbury added 10 points.



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