The Eagles were too worried about freshman Awal Ajak to relish the latest triumph in their perfect season.
Ajak, a talented 6-foot freshman from Des Moines, hurt her left knee in the third quarter and left the gym on crutches. The extent of the injury will be determined in the next few days, but Coach Kim Muhl thinks it could be significant.
"I'm not optimistic," he said. "It's not good, I don't think. We'll see."
Ajak got hurt when she hustled back on defense following an errant pass by the Eagles. She crumpled under the basket and spent several minutes on the floor while being examined by the Kirkwood trainer before being helped to the locker room.
"It starts with a bad pass," said Muhl. "You throw it away, you've got to run it down and bad stuff happens."
Ajak has been a key reserve for Kirkwood, averaging 8.1 points and 3.7 rebounds in 16.3 minutes per game. The Eagles have a deep squad, but her absence would be significant.
Southwestern (12-10, 3-5) gave Kirkwood a good game in the first half. The visitors drained nine 3-pointers in the opening 20 minutes and trailed by only four points at intermission, 46-42.