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

Metro Sports Report

Eagles 6th at national golf tourney

FOLEY, Ala. - The Kirkwood Eagles are sitting in sixth place after two rounds of the NJCAA Division II national golf tournament at the Glen Lakes Club in Foley, Ala.

The Eagles were tied for fourth place after the first round Monday after shooting 294, but they submitted a 300 team score Tuesday and are 13 shots over par at 594.

Meridian Community College fired the best round of the tournament Tuesday with a four-man score of 285 and holds a nine-shot lead at  579. Kirkwood trails Meridian by 15 shots with 36 holes remaining Wednesday and Thursday.

Max Thrune of Kirkwood is tied for seventh in the individual standings at 1-over-par 145 with rounds of 73 and 72. He trails the leader by six shots.

JD Goodfellow is tied for 27th at 5-over 149 with rounds of 74 and 75. Niall Powell is tied for 30th at 6-over 150 with rounds of 75 and 75.


KCC golfers have good start at nationals

FOLEY, Ala. - The Kirkwood men's golf team enjoyed a good start at the NJCAA Division II national tournament Monday and is tied for fourth place after 18 holes.

Tyler Junior College has the lead at 289, with Kirkwood five shots off the pace at 294. The Eagles are tied with Meridian Community College.

Max Thrune and Dawson Peters of Kirkwood fired rounds of 1-over-par 73 and are three shots behind the leader. JD Goodfellow and Ryan Morrison posted rounds of 2-over 74 and Niall Powell fashioned a 3-over 75.

The 72-hole tournament continues through Thursday, with 18 holes each day.


Eagles headed to JUCO World Series

Todd Rima rolled the dice a little bit when he left a strong program at NIACC six years ago to become the new head coach at Kirkwood.

It paid off handsomely on Sunday.

The Eagles spanked Southeast Community College of Nebraska, 10-1, to win the North Plains district baseball title and earn the school's first trip to the NJCAA Division II World Series since 1999.

Kirkwood (42-15-1) will be one of only 10 teams at the national tournament in Enid, Okla., from May 26 to June 2.

Rima spent 11 years at NIACC, a junior college in Mason City that competes in the same conference with Kirkwood. He thought Kirkwood had more resources than NIACC to compete at a national level on a regular basis and moved his young family to Cedar Rapids to embrace the job.

Kirkwood made four trips to the World Series in the 1990's under Coach John Lewis and finished second on two of those trips, but the program had slipped a little when Rima arrived.

Now the Eagles are back, joining the Kirkwood basketball teams, softball team, men's golf squad and volleyball team as national powers.

"This athletic department deserves the baseball program to go back to the World Series," Rima said after getting a bucket of ice water dumped on his head and hugging his family. "This community deserves it.


Eagles in showdown for World Series

The Kirkwood Eagles made four trips to the junior college World Series in the 1990's, but it's been 19 long years since they made their last appearance in the national tournament.

Now it's do-or-die time for the Eagles.

Kirkwood split the first two games of the North Plains district tournament with Southeast Community College on Saturday and now they'll play the decisive third game on Sunday.

The showdown in the best-of-3 series is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. at the Kirkwood field.

The Eagles cruised in the first game, 10-1, behind a strong outing by Peyton Long, but Southeast took the nightcap, 14-9, when Kirkwood pitchers walked 12 batters and hit two others.

Now it's 12th-ranked Kirkwood (41-15) against unranked Southeast of Lincoln, Neb. (42-14) for a trip to the NJCAA Division II national tournament in Enid, Okla., May 26-June 2.


KCC softball team bumped from nationals

CLINTON, Miss. - The Kirkwood softball lost two tight games at the NJCAA Division II national championships Thursday and was eliminated from the tournament with a 1-2 record.

The Eagles squandered golden scoring opportunities in both contests and finished the season with a 49-13 record.

Kirkwood, seeded No. 5 in the 16-team tournament, lost to No. 4 seed Phoenix 4-2 in the winners bracket quarterfinals Thursday afternoon at Traceway Park in Mississippi. The Eagles left 11 runners on base against Phoenix and had runners at first, second and third in the bottom of the seventh when their final batter popped up to third.

Kirkwood left eight runners on base against Madison, the No. 11 seed, and had the bases loaded again in the seventh inning when their final batter popped up to the shortstop in a 5-4 setback.

DoniRae Mayhew (20-4) took the loss in Game 1 and Natalie Halvorson (25-9) absorbed the loss in Game 2.


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