Friday, February 23, 2018
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Metro Sports Report

Howell leads KCC baseball into new year

When Korry Howell was selected in the 19th round of the Major League draft last June as a freshman, it looked like the Kirkwood baseball team would need a new shortstop for the 2018 campaign.

Fortunately for the Eagles, Howell had a different idea and Kirkwood Coach Todd Rima has never stopped smiling.

Howell declined to sign with the Kansas City Royals and will be starting for Kirkwood when it opens the season with a four-game series at Johnson County Community College this weekend.

The opener is set for Friday at 2 p.m., with a doubleheader Saturday and a single game Sunday.

"I think Korry wants to continue to develop and feels that college is important to him, his education is important to him," Rima said before leaving for the road trip to Kansas. "I think he also believes that he's a guy that with another year of development could go a lot higher in the draft. Now he's got an unbelievable option."

Howell can sign a pro contract after he's drafted again this June, or he could honor his commitment to the Iowa Hawkeyes and go play for Rick Heller in Iowa City next year as a junior.

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No. 2 Eagles clinch tie for title

The Kirkwood women's basketball team has five sophomores in the starting lineup who helped the Eagles win the national title last year.

Their next five players are darn good, too.

The second-ranked Eagles got another big boost from their reserves Wednesday night and dumped Southeastern, 82-57, to clinch at least a tie for the ICCAC conference title.

Kirkwood has a three-game lead over NIACC with three games left in the regular season. The Eagles swept the season series from NIACC, so even if the race ends in a tie - which it won't - the Eagles have already clinched the No. 1 seed for the regional.

Coach Kim Muhl has a deep and talented roster, from top to bottom. Not only did the Kirkwood reserves smoke the SCC subs 49-7 in bench points Wednesday, they also outscored their own starters 49-33.

It would be interesting to see what would happen if Kirkwood's starting lineup played the No. 2 unit in practice, especially if they took it seriously for 40 minutes.

"I think the next-5 would beat the top-5," said freshman Mackenzie Jenkins, who's part of that No. 2 group.

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No. 6 Eagles roll to 13th win in row

Kyle Arrington dunked in 17 points Tuesday night as the sixth-ranked Kirkwood Eagles cruised to a 92-47 victory over the Mount Mercy junior varsity at Johnson Hall.

Arrington, a 6-foot-10 freshman, collected four dunks in the first half over the shorter Mustangs. He finished by making 8 of 10 shots from the field in 17 minutes.

Kirkwood raised its record to 21-4 overall with its 13th straight victory.

Chris King and Jay Small contributed 12 points apiece for the Eagles. Carlo Marble had 10 points. LJ Stansbury and Semaj Ray scored nine points. Justin Storey finished with eight points.

Bailey Kale dished out 11 assists. Ray grabbed nine rebounds. Arrington and Small had eight rebounds.

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Waugh sparks No. 7 Eagles to victories

DAVENPORT - Kenady Waugh went 6-for-7 with six RBIs Sunday as the seventh-ranked Kirkwood softball team won two more games at the Winter Dome Tournament in Davenport.

Waugh went 2-for-3 and drove in two runs when the Eagles defeated Southeastern, 9-1, in their first game. She then went 4-for-4 with four RBIs in a 10-0 victory over John Wood.

Kirkwood won all four of its games at the tournament and outscored its opponents, 32-1, with three shutouts.

Natalie Halvorson pitched all five innings in the 9-1 verdict over Southeastern. She allowed five hits with six strikeouts and no walks.

Hannah Mausser went 3-for-3 with three RBIs against Southeastern. DoniRae Mayhew was 3-for-4. Rachel Stewart and Lauren Kuch had two hits.

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Kirkwood men clinch tie for title

Kirkwood Coach Bryan Petersen was worried about his team's mental toughness back in December when the Eagles stumbled into the Christmas break with an 8-4 record.

The surging Eagles have not lost a game since then and Petersen is not worried anymore.

The sixth-ranked Eagles rallied for an exciting 80-77 victory over Iowa Lakes Saturday at Johnson Hall to clinch at least a tie for the ICCAC title with their 12th straight win.

Kirkwood has a three-game lead over Iowa Lakes and Southwestern with three games left in the regular season. Everyone else has been eliminated from the race.

There's no question about Kirkwood's mental toughness now after the Eagles rallied from an 11-point deficit.

"I feel like we've really grown up in the last month," said Petersen. "When adversity has hit, we're still staying together and focused on the next possession."

Iowa Lakes socked the Eagles with a 21-2 burst in the first half to grab a 38-27 lead, but Kirkwood responded with a 17-4 burst of its own to take a 44-42 edge at intermission.

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