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Friday, July 29, 2016
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Jim Ecker, President & Editor
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Metro Sports Report

Winker will be UI lecturer, ad salesman

Mike Winker will be leaving Xavier High School in a few weeks with 30 state titles in the trophy case and a lifetime of memories as the only athletic director in school history.

Winker is justifiably proud of all the success, but says he's proudest of the students, coaches, families and administrators who have given the Saints a chance to compete at such a high level.

Winker, 51, will retire from Xavier in June and has accepted two jobs that undoubtedly will keep him busy in the years to come. He'll be a lecturer at the University of Iowa in the Sports Management and Recreation Department, and he'll also serve as sales director in Eastern Iowa for the Varsity Group, a company that sells advertising for high school scoreboards.

"I'm excited about both ventures," he said last week. "I've kind of got the best of both worlds. Both of them are going to keep me in contact with the high schools. I'm excited about both opportunities, I'm excited about the change."

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Rahmatulla makes splash with Red Top

SOLON - Tyler Rahmatulla looks good in a red-and-white baseball uniform again.

Rahmatulla wore those colors as a minor leaguer for the St. Louis Cardinals for three years and he's wearing them again for Red Top in the Iowa Valley League this season.

"I had all red stuff, so that worked out," he said with a smile Sunday.

Rahmatulla made a big splash in his IVL debut when he went 4-for-6 with a double, two home runs and four RBIs as Red Top swept a doubleheader from Norway, 7-6 and 13-2, at the Solon field.

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Fairfax, Williamsburg sweep IVL twinbills

Fairfax and Williamsburg swept their doubleheaders Sunday on the opening day of the 2016 Iowa Valley League season.

Fairfax swept Walford, 5-1 and 7-5. Williamsburg took both of its games from Watkins, 9-2 and 1-0.

FAIRFAX 5-7, WALFORD 1-5

WALFORD - Cody Bell pitched a complete game and had a two-run double as Fairfax topped Walford in the first game. Bell pitched a five-hitter with seven strikeouts.

Walford loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh and brought the tying run to the plate, but Bell finished the game with a strikeout.

Cody Williams had two hits for Fairfax and Tony Maiers contributed an RBI single.

Fairfax had 14 hits in the second game. Jimmy Lizarraga belted a home run and had three RBIs. Bell also smacked a home run. David Yancey, Lucas Larson, Maiers, Adam Stolley and Sam Hunter had two hits for the winners.

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Whittington, Eagles take 2nd at NJCAA golf

PLYMOUTH, Ind. - Carson Whittington and the Kirkwood Eagles are coming home from the NJCAA Division II men's golf tournament in Indiana with some impressive awards.

Whittington fired a 6-under-par 66 Friday and captured second place in the individual standings and his exploits helped the Eagles take second place in the team standings at the Swan Lake Resort.

Whittington and Justin Warren of South Mountain (Ariz.) both finished the 72-hole tournament at 6-under 282, but Warren won a two-hole playoff for the individual championship.

Whittington, a sophomore from Creston, shot rounds of 72, 71, 73 and 66 in the four-day event.

Kirkwood and Tyler (Texas) both finished with 1,158 strokes in the team competition, but Kirkwood won a one-hole playoff for second place. South Mountain took the title by 20 strokes at 1,138, giving South Mountain its second straight crown.

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MSR will cover venerable Iowa Valley League

I have great news to share with you today, especially if you love baseball and cherish the small towns that have nourished the sport for a long, long time in Eastern Iowa.

The Metro Sports Report will be offering extensive coverage this spring and summer of the Iowa Valley League, a baseball tradition in nearby towns that traces its roots all the way back to 1935.

Norway, Watkins, Fairfax, Walford, Williamsburg and Red Top are in the league again this season. The campaign begins Sunday and runs through July 31, followed by the annual IABA state tournament that lasts two weeks in August.

The Metro Sports Report will cover one doubleheader each week, starting this Sunday between Norway and Red Top at Red Top's home base in Solon at 1 p.m. Norway has been a traditional power in the league, but Red Top has captured the last five league titles and appears to have another strong team.

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