Wednesday, April 08, 2020
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Appel nets 43 as Eagles trim Coe

Luke Appel poured in a career-high 43 points Tuesday night as theĀ  12th-ranked Kirkwood Eagles rallied to defeat the Coe junior varsity, 95-89, at Johnson Hall.

Appel, a 6-foot-7 sophomore from Marshalltown, shot 18 for 22 from the field and canned a pair of 3-pointers.

Coe led by nine points with about three minutes remaining, but the Eagles forced turnovers and surged to their 18th victory in 22 games.

DJ Purnell finished with 19 points and 15 rebounds for Kirkwood. Seybian Sims collected 10 rebounds, eight points, three assists and three steals.

Sean Oberman scored 19 points for Coe. The Kohawks made sixteen 3-pointers, with Zach Bushbaum nailing five triples.



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Kirkwood women roll by Southwestern

CRESTON - Paige Bradford collected a double-double Saturday as the top-ranked Kirkwood women's basketball team smashed Southwestern, 87-49, in an ICCAC conference game.

Bradford finished with 16 points, 14 rebounds and five assists for the Eagles (21-2, 8-1).

Kemara Watson scored 14 points, Amara Lipsey 13 and Kortney Drake 12 for Kirkwood.

Jordan Simone scored 12 points for Southwestern (8-14, 3-6).



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No. 14 KCC men stay tied for No. 1

CRESTON - The 14th-ranked Kirkwood men's basketball team strolled by Southwestern, 98-65, Saturday to stay in a three-way tie for first place in the ICCAC conference.

The Eagles are 17-4 overall and 7-1 in the league, tied with DMACC and Iowa Lakes at the top of the standings.

Devonte Thedford finished with 15 points, six rebounds and five assists for Kirkwood in a balanced attack. Jamal Stephenson scored 15 points, DJ Purnell 14, Jalen Taylor 14 and Luke Appel 13 for the Eagles.

Purnell, Niko Gosnell and Seybian Sims had eight rebounds. Taylor hit four 3-pointers off the bench.



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Appel shines as Kirkwood nips NIACC

Luke Appel knew he needed to get stronger and develop better moves around the basket to become a major force for the Kirkwood Eagles this season.

Mission accomplished.

Appel stuffed the stat sheet Wednesday night with 27 points, 17 rebounds and six assists as the 14th-ranked Eagles held off 12th-ranked NIACC, 89-88, in an ICCAC conference thriller at Johnson Hall.

The victory lifted Kirkwood into a three-way for first place in the conference with DMACC and Iowa Lakes with 6-1 records.

Appel, a 6-foot-8 sophomore from Marshalltown, averaged 9.7 points and 6.5 rebounds last season when Kirkwood won the NJCAA Division II national title. Now he's producing 15.5 points and 8.3 rebounds and getting the ball at crunch time.

When the Eagles needed a big bucket Wednesday night, they looked for Appel in the low post, just like they did last year when Doug Wilson was the star of the show.

"I've kind of grown into the role," Appel said. "Doug was my mentor last year and I kind of just learned from him.

"He's an All-American and he's averaging 20 at a Division I school (South Dakota State), so I learned from him every day. And I tried to get as strong as I could this summer and try to become the best I could be.

"I really didn't lift in high school, but I've learned to love it. I was in there all summer."



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No. 1 Eagles fall to No. 4 NIACC

The look on Kim Muhl's face told the story.

He never said it directly, but the veteran Kirkwood women's basketball coach gave off the vibe that his team let one slip away Wednesday night.

In a battle of two nationally-ranked teams, No. 4 North Iowa Area Community College got a late fourth-quarter run and held off numerous challenges in the final two minutes to upset the top-ranked Eagles, 63-60, in an ICCAC game before an enthusiastic crowd at Johnson Hall.

"I thought we didn't do a very good job doing some things," Muhl said. "You gotta make free throws, 15-for-29 is pretty poor. That's on them. They have to make their shots."

Free throws weren't the only area of struggle for the Eagles (20-2, 7-1). They only connected on one 3-point basket in 15 attempts, compared to 9-for-32 for the visitors. NIACC (21-1, 9-0) elected to put heavy pressure on the Kirkwood guards, allowing the Eagle posts to work against single coverage.

"We didn't guard well in transition a couple of times," Muhl said. "We lost them and they hit a couple of 3's. That was our fault. They are too good to let them have open shots like that."

Despite their offensive struggles, the Eagles had their chances. NIACC's biggest lead of the night was a pair of six-point margins early in both halves. The Eagles never led by more than two points the entire night.



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