Saturday, July 21, 2018
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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Metro Sports Report

Czerwiec hears the sounds of success

Austin Czerwiec was born with a severe hearing disability that was not discovered until he was three years old.

He got a late start on basic sounds, vocabulary and reading, but once he was fitted with hearing aids he worked hard to catch up.

The late start did not stop him from becoming a top athlete at Muscatine High School and an accomplished baseball player at Mount  Mercy University, graduating in 2015 with a degree in business management and human resource management.

Czerwiec was honored as the Pitcher of the Year in the Iowa Valley League last season and he's excelling again for the Stars, the 2017  league and state champions.

Czerwiec tossed another complete game Sunday as the Stars topped  Walford, 6-2, in the first game of their doubleheader at Mount Mercy.

The Stars won the second game, 5-1, to remain in first place with an 8-4 record.


McCaffery helps Red Top sweep Bandits

NORWAY - Connor McCaffery enjoyed a big day at the plate Sunday to  help Red Top sweep an Iowa Valley League doubleheader from the Norway  Bandits in Norway.

McCaffery belted a three-run homer to help Red Top win the first game,  5-4, and his sacrifice fly in the second game proved to be the  game-winning run in a 6-4 victory and the sweep.

The outcome left Red Top and Norway tied for third place in the IVL  standings with 6-6 records.

The Stars swept Walford Sunday to take sole possession of first place  with an 8-4 record. The scheduled doubleheader featuring Watkins at  Williamsburg was canceled due to wet grounds.

McCaffery's three-run homeer in the first game followed singles by  Ross Kramer and Kirby Kerr. Red Top added two runs in the fifth on a  walk by Izaya Fullard, a single by Kramer and a double by Kerr.


Farley preparing for final run at Iowa

WATKINS - If Luke Farley feels any pressure as he prepares for his final collegiate baseball season as an Iowa Hawkeye, it certainly does not show.

Farley is once again patrolling the outfield this summer with the Watkins Mud Hens of the Iowa Valley League along with taking a couple of summer classes at Iowa.

He has come through with some big hits for the Hens, most notably belting homers in both ends of a doubleheader sweep at Norway earlier in the season. This past Sunday, he had a pair of hits as Watkins rallied for a 3-2 win over Walford to gain a split of a doubleheader.

Playing for Watkins has allowed Farley to concentrate on both academics and baseball.

"(Playing for Watkins) gives me an opportunity to get some at-bats in during the summer," said Farley, who has been an all-academic Big Ten selection the past two seasons. "I'm also taking a couple of summer classes right now so it helps me to get tuned up for the season."


Watkins finds way, gains split with Walford

WATKINS - For much of the season, runs have been scarce for the Watkins Mud Hens.

Outside of a sweep of Norway in week two, Watkins had not dented the win column in Iowa Valley League play.

It appeared the Mud Hens were on their way to more of the same here Sunday against Walford. The Hogs got a two-out RBI double in the bottom of the ninth from Tyler Butz to top the hosts, 2-1, in the first game.

Then it was Butz again getting Walford out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning with a two-run double and it looked like the Hens were headed to their sixth straight defeat and two more setbacks.

However, from that point on Watkins starter Evan Boddicker closed the door the rest of the way, allowing just three singles and his teammates scratched across two runs in the bottom of the sixth to secure a 3-2 win and a split at Gabe Kuester Memorial Ball Park.

"I really didn't change anything out there after the first inning," said Boddicker, who pitched at Mount Mercy. "I just kept my same approach and really just tried to keep us in it."


3 teams still tied for IVL lead

The 2018 Iowa Valley League campaign has reached the mid-point of a  20-game season and there's still no breathing room at the top.

Williamsburg, Norway and the Stars are all tied for first place with  6-4 records with 10 games left in the season. Walford is just a game  back at 5-5, with Red Top lurking at 4-6.


IOWA CITY - The Toppers and Red Sox traded one-run victories in  well-pitched games at Iowa City West High School on Sunday.

Red Top won the first game, 3-2, on a three-run double by Kirby Kerr  in the bottom of the sixth inning. Hunter Porterfield picked up the  victory in relief of Tanner Lohaus.

Hogan Penny belted a two-run homer for Williamsburg for an early 2-0  lead. Tanner Jansen pitched five shutout innings for the Red Sox  before yielding to a relief pitcher.


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