Wednesday, March 29, 2017
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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Kirkwood Community College - Cedar Rapids, Iowa

No. 1 Eagles lose Ajak to torn ACL

Kirkwood Coach Kim Muhl is confident his team can make a good run in the postseason tournament next month, but the top-ranked Eagles will have to do it without Awal Ajak.

Ajak, a 6-foot freshman from Des Moines, confirmed Wednesday night that she suffered a torn ACL in her left knee in a win over Southwestern on Feb. 11 and has been lost for the season. Her surgery is scheduled for Monday.

Kirkwood collected another blowout Wednesday with an 85-37 victory over Southeastern Community College at Johnson Hall, but Muhl knows  the Eagles will face stiff competition if they reach the national tournament and compete for the national title.

Kirkwood (27-0, 11-0) has not been pushed by too many teams this season, but Muhl is confident they'll respond to the challenge when  the time comes and kick into a higher gear, even without Ajak.

"With this group, I think they can," he said. "They've got a pretty strong mental approach to the game. They know what's at stake.

"They bought in, they guard and they really pass the ball to each other."

Ajak, a key reserve on a deep and talented club, was averaging 8.1  points and 3.7 rebounds when she got hurt. She watched Wednesday's game in street clothes with her crutches nearby.



No. 4 KCC softball team sweeps Clarke

DUBUQUE - The fourth-ranked Kirkwood softball team swept a  doubleheader from Clarke University, 9-1 and 11-1, Wednesday in Dubuque.

Monika Bevans went 3-for-3 and drove in three runs for the Eagles  (6-0) in the opener. Taylor Nearad went 3-for-4 and scored twice.  Amanda Pipolo was 2-for-3.

Angie McBeain (2-0) tossed the first four innings for the victory.

Lexi Ferrari was 2-for-3 with a home run, two RBIs and three runs in  the second game. Bevans drove in three more runs and now has 16 RBIs  in just six games this season.

Maddie Hansen went 2-for-4 with two RBIs. Morgan Frost was 2-for-4 and  DoniRae Mayhew drove in two runs.

Lexi Kinnaird (2-0) struck out 10 batters in five innings in the nightcap.


No. 9 Kirkwood men claim 22nd win

The ninth-ranked Kirkwood men's basketball team cruised to a 95-62 victory over the Mount Mercy junior varsity at Johnson Hall Tuesday  night.

The Eagles raised their record to 22-4.

Da'Rion King led Kirkwood with 22 points and eight rebounds. Shakur Triplett collected a double-double with 16 points and 12 rebounds.

Elijah Henry contributed 16 points and nine rebounds for the Eagles. Chris King finished with 13 points, six assists and five rebounds. Carlo Marble added 11 points.

Chris Brown led Mount Mercy with 22 points.

MOUNT MERCY (62): Stoeffler 2 3-4 8, Van Oort 4 0-0 9, Mallett 1 0-0  3, Frazier 0 0-0 0, Brown 8 6-9 22, Reischauer 5 3-4 13, Ehlen 0 0-0  0, Shelman 3 0-0 7, Kehinde 0 0-0 0. Totals 23 12-17 62.

KIRKWOOD (95): Triplett 6 4-4 16, Harp 2 0-0 5, Meeker 2 0-0 6, C.King  6 0-0 13, D.King 9 4-5 22, Jackson 2 2-2 6, Marble 3 2-2 11, Henry 7  2-3 16. Totals 37 14-16 95.

Halftime - Kirkwood 51, Mount Mercy JV 28. 3-point goals - Mount Mercy  JV 4 (Stoeffler 1, Van Oort 1, Mallett 1, Shelman 1), Kirkwood 7  (Marble 3, Meeker 2, Harp 1, C.King 1).


No. 4 KCC softball team starts 4-0

DAVENPORT - The fourth-ranked Kirkwood softball team won all four of its games at the Saint Ambrose tournament Saturday and Sunday at the SAU Dome in Davenport.

The Eagles defeated Saint Ambrose 6-5, Waubonsee 11-1, Carl Sandburg 25-0 and John Wood 15-6.

All-American catcher Maddie Hansen drove in 11 runs in the four games. All-American center fielder Taylor Nearad hit .583 and scored eight  runs from the leadoff spot in the batting order. And All-American left fielder Morgan Frost hit .533 and scored eight runs.

Freshman DoniRae Mayhew hit .571 and was the winning pitching in two of the games. Freshman Monika Bevans also hit .571 and drove in 10  runs. And freshman Angie McBeain hit .455, scored eight runs and was the winning pitcher in relief against Saint Ambrose.

Hansen, Bevans and McBeain hit home runs in the tournament.


Harp plays sweet music for Eagles

The Kirkwood Eagles slapped adversity in the face again Saturday afternoon.

If you've followed the Kirkwood men's basketball team this season, you know it's nothing new.

The ninth-ranked Eagles dressed only eight players due to medical  issues and still managed to knock off DMACC, 83-63, in a key ICCAC  conference game at Johnson Hall.

Earlier this year, the Eagles had to borrow a few players from the Kirkwood baseball team when five of their own players were suspended  for two games by the NJCAA.

The Eagles are now 3-0 with a short-handed roster.

"They've been faced with a lot of different adversity during this  year," said Kirkwood Coach Bryan Petersen. "Basically our message to  the team was, 'We've done this before, so we have to find a way and  not make excuses.'

"I thought the guys did a really nice job, coming out and setting the  tone the first five minutes."

Byron Harp poured in 26 points for the Eagles and padded his stat line with six assists, five rebounds, five 3-pointers and one only turnover  in 39 minutes.



Wilson nets 20 as No. 1 Eagles roll

Kirkwood Coach Kim Muhl went on a recruiting trip to the Chicago suburbs last year to scout a player at Rich East High School who ended  up going to Monroe College in New York.

It turned out to be a fruitful trip, however, because Muhl landed a  talented point guard from Rich East instead.

Hello, Tay Tay Wilson.

Wilson made three 3-pointers tossed in 20 points Saturday to help the  top-ranked Eagles gun down the DMACC Bears, 82-57, in an ICCAC  Conference game at Johnson Hall.

"We were actually recruiting another kid from her high school," Muhl  explained. "I liked Tay. She hit shots. Point guards that can hit  shots are fun."

Wilson made it a fun day for Kirkwood as the Eagles raised their  impeccable records to 26-0 overall and 10-0 in the league with four  games left in the regular season.

Wilson, a 5-foot-6 freshman, is averaging just 6.5 points and 3.2  assists for Kirkwood, but don't be fooled by those modest numbers.  She's the floor general on a deep and balanced club where the points,  rebounds and assists are spread around.

Wilson can score 20 points and help her club win a ballgame, or she  can score no points and help her team.



3 All-Americans boost Kirkwood softball

The Kirkwood softball team begins the season Saturday with three All-Americans in its starting lineup, including the 2016 National Player of the Year with Taylor Nearad.

No wonder Coach Joe Yegge is optimistic.

Nearad enjoyed a spectacular year last season when she hit .602 with 30 home runs and 129 RBIs, nearly winning the national Triple Crown.

Maddie Hansen hit .455 with 20 homers and 93 RBIs. Morgan Frost checked in at .498 with 10 homers and 72 RBIs.

The Eagles boast an All-American in center field, an All-American behind the plate and an All-American in left field.

That's a good way to build a lineup.

"We should be able to score as well as anyone in the country," Yegge said this week.



Goods nets 30 as No. 1 Eagles roll

IOWA FALLS - Simone Goods poured in 30 points Wednesday night as the  top-ranked Kirkwood women's basketball team pounded Ellsworth, 85-51, in an ICCAC conference game in Iowa Falls.

Goods shot 12-for-13 from the floor and hit 6-of-7 free throws. She also snared nine rebounds.

Tay Wilson contributed 16 points for Kirkwood. Morgan Axcell scored 13 points and Deleyah Harris had 10.

Kirkwood raised its perfect records to 25-0 overall and 9-0 in the conference. Ellsworth fell to 9-15 and 1-8.

KIRKWOOD (85): Harris 3 4-5 10, T.Wilson 6 1-3 16, Hedges 0 0-0 0, Axcell 5 0-0 13, Puok 0 0-0 0, Taylor 0 0-0 0, Watkins 1 4-6 7, Voss 2 0-0 4, Cotton 0 0-0 0, C. Wilson 1 0-0 2, Goods 12 6-7 30, Usher 1 0-0 2, Achenbach 0 0-0 0. Totals 31 15-21 85.

3-point goals - Kirkwood 7 (Axcell 3, T.Wilson 3, Watkins 1).


No. 9 Kirkwood men notch 20th win

IOWA FALLS - Byron Harp tossed in 19 points Wednesday night as the  ninth-ranked Kirkwood men's basketball team topped Ellsworth, 58-48, in an ICCAC conference game in Iowa Falls.

Miles Wentzien finished with a double-double for the Eagles with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Shakur Triplett also grabbed 11 rebounds.

Kirkwood raised its records to 20-4 overall and 7-1 in the league. Ellsworth fell to 11-14 and 3-5.

KIRKWOOD (58): Triplett 2 3-4 7, Harp 6 5-5 19, Jackson 0 0-0 0,  Wentzien 4 0-0 11, Meeker 2 0-0 5, Fagan 3 0-0 7, C.King 2 0-0 5,  Marble 0 0-0 0, D King 2 0-0 4. Totals 21 8-9 58.

Halftime - Kirkwood 25, Ellsworth 20. 3-point goals - Kirkwood 8  (Wentzien 3, Harp 2, Meeker 1, Fagan 1, C.King 1).


Eagles beat No. 1 Spartans on Meeker's 3

The Kirkwood Eagles delivered a bold statement at Johnson Hall  Saturday afternoon.

Ethan Meeker provided the exclamation point.

Meeker hit a 3-pointer from deep in the corner with two seconds left  to snap a 75-75 tie and give Kirkwood a 78-75 victory over top-ranked  Southwestern before a festive crowd at home.

The 12th-ranked Eagles handed Southwestern its first loss of the  season and moved into a tie with the Spartans for first place in the  ICCAC conference with 6-1 records.

The Eagles announced to the world that they are fully capable of  winning the national title again this year. And Meeker proved that's  fully capable of delivering in the clutch.

"I knew I had to get it off quick," said Meeker, a freshman from  Galesburg, Ill. "I knew I didn't have time for a dribble or anything.

"It looked pretty good, but I was holding my breath until it dropped.  It was pretty nuts."

There was a terrific atmosphere at Johnson Hall for the showdown  between two of the premier junior college teams in the country and the  Eagles celebrated with their fans when it was over.

Last Updated on Sunday, 12 February 2017 07:15



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