Wednesday, April 25, 2018
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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Metro Sports Report

Linn-Mar girls win West Delaware Invite

MANCHESTER - Carolyn Newhouse and Amanda Piche collected impressive victories Thursday as Linn-Mar won the West Delaware Invitational girls track meet.

Newhouse captured the 1500-meter run in 5:00.39, beating the runnerup by more than seven seconds. Piche took the discus at 140 feet, 8 inches, topping the second-place finisher by 26 feet.

Linn-Mar also won the 4x400 relay and the 4x800 relay.

The Lions finished with 112 points in the 11-team field to beat Western Dubuque by 13.5 points. Marion finished last with 18.5 points. The Indians placed second behind Linn-Mar in the 4x800 relay.


Two words of advice for athletes: Have fun

An Easter-time message for my high school athletes: With better weather hopefully coming on, you'll be competing this spring and summer and I have some advice for you.

And that is, after seeing the Spring Fling showcase in basketball at the old Field House in Iowa City last weekend I got the idea that most of the players there were on exhibit with the idea of obtaining a college scholarship, and that included the parents.

I came away with the idea that high school athletics should be fun, and the lessons you learn from competing are just acquired as part of the payoff for having fun. Yes, you want to be as good in your chosen sports as possible, but if it's not fun, if it becomes work or drudgery, you're missing out on the benefits of an athletic experience.

So I would tell you at this Easter time to take stock of how much you're investing in your athletic experience and what you're getting out of it. And if it doesn't come out in a positive way, just put a smile on your face when you're competing and you'll reap some rewards that you probably never thought about.

Let's go back to the NCAA line that only 1 percent of college athletes ever become a pro at their chosen sport, and I would suggest the same total of high school athletes get full scholarship rides. So at this Easter time, smile a bit, enjoy what you're doing and compete to the best of your ability. And remember the word sportsmanship.


Furnish, J-Hawks win CRANDIC

Megan Furnish missed qualifying for the Class 4A state golf tournament by a single shot last year, but it looks like she could be on course for a trip this season.

Furnish won top honors at the CRANDIC meet Wednesday and helped Cedar Rapids Jefferson claim the team championship on a cold, gray day at Hunters Ridge Golf Course in Marion.

Furnish fired a 7-over-par 79 on the 5,090-yard layout to beat Madison Goodfellow of Iowa City West by one stroke. Kimmy Askelson of Xavier finished third at 89 in the blustery conditions.

The golfers wore jackets, hats and mittens in an effort to keep warm with the temperature in the low 40s and the wind-chill lower than that. It was not a day for low scores, but Furnish topped the field of 49 golfers from nine schools.

"It shows a lot of character and heart," Jefferson Coach Dan Ray said. "She came off the front-9 with a 42 and I could tell she wasn't satisfied."

Furnish shot a 1-over-par 37 on the back-9 for the title. "That's tough to do under these conditions," Ray said.

Furnish had to beat the elements before she could beat the rest of the golfers.

"Try to stay positive and stay focused on the ball, not the weather," she said. "I tried to focus on my shots, not the other people. Stay positive, stay focused, and my putting came around a little better."

Furnish was paired with Askelson and Emma Lorenz of Linn-Mar. Askelson finished fourth in the Class 4A state tournament last year and has signed with Drake, but she struggled with a lingering calf injury and shot 43-46 for her 89.


Zach Bohannon will not join his brother at UNI

Zach Bohannon is looking forward to being a regular college student and a regular college basketball player after two years of a strict military regime at the Air Force Academy.

He's leaving the academy and will transfer to another Division I school, but said Wednesday night he will not be joining his brother Matt at the University of Northern Iowa.

Bohannon was interested in playing his final two years for Northern Iowa, but his parents have learned that UNI does not have any scholarships available for him.

"I can tell you that is not a possibility. I will not be playing with my brother," he said. "They don't really have a spot for me."

Matt Bohannon will be joining UNI as a freshman next season after helping Linn-Mar win the Class 4A state title this year. Zach Bohannon helped Linn-Mar win a state title in 2007.

"I have talked to a few schools and I have a couple of options," Bohannon said. "I haven't narrowed it down at all, except that I'm going to go Division I. I've had a lot of D-II interest, but I just felt I want to stay at this level."


Joens carries family legacy in discus

Sam Joens carries more than a discus when he competes for the Cedar Rapids Prairie track team. He carries a family legacy.

A member of the Joens family began throwing the discus at Prairie more than 30 years ago. They've been good, too.

Sam's father, Scott Joens, holds the school record in the discus. Jake Joens, one of Sam's uncles, won a state title.

Craig Joens, another uncle, also threw at Prairie. So did two of Sam's aunts, Sara and Angie, and so did his sister, Amy. A bunch of cousins have thrown, too. Sara held the women's record in the discus at one time, until a cousin (Holly) broke it.

Sam Joens is the latest, and he's sustaining the family's proud tradition in the event. He finished sixth at the Class 4A state meet last year as a junior and currently ranks second in the state with a heave of 170 feet, 6 inches.

His father set the school record at 185 feet, 4 inches in 1982 and it's stood for 29 years. Sam wants to break that mark, but needs another 15 feet.


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