Today’s Local Sports


Mustangs’ Girls Try to Rebound Before Holiday Break

Posted: Tuesday, November 25th, 2014 at 5:52 am

Not starting their season the way they would have wanted to, the PCM girls’ basketball team has a chance to even up their record at a win and a loss if they can take care of Greene County tonight. The Mustangs fell to Knoxville last Friday, 54 – 47, in a game that was tied halfway through the fourth quarter. Coach Bret Grier says his team needs to do a better job tonight in all aspects of the game. Greene County brings back a team that was rich in juniors last year, but were beaten quite handily the two times they faced PCM in the regular season. Tonight’s game tips off in Monroe at 7:30 p.m.

Trojans’ Basketball Faces Stiff Girls’ Test Tonight

Posted: Tuesday, November 25th, 2014 at 5:52 am

A formidable foe awaits the Pleasantville girls’ basketball squad this evening inside their home gym when Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont comes to town. The Rockets are fresh off of a very successful volleyball season and bring a talented and ranked team back into the gym this winter. Pleasantville has been able to open up the season against them in the past, and Coach Aaron Fichter says it’s a nice measuring stick to see where his girls are at to begin their journey. Tonight’s game is in Pleasantville and will start with the JV game first at 6:00 p.m. with varsity to follow at 7:30.

Melcher-Dallas Girls’ Basketball Opens Regular Season at Home

Posted: Tuesday, November 25th, 2014 at 5:51 am

Also looking to get a game in before the Thanksgiving holiday takes us away for a few days, Melcher-Dallas’ girls’ basketball team stays at home to take on non-conference foe, Wayne, this evening. Depth will be an issue for the Saints this season, as they are few in numbers. Coach Jon Suntken says the Falcons will try to put some pressure on his team tonight. Tonight’s season opener for the Saints is scheduled to tip-off at 6:00 p.m.

Central Women Try to Push Record to 4 – 0

Posted: Tuesday, November 25th, 2014 at 5:50 am

Stepping out of the state for a moment, the Central women’s basketball team will try for their fourth straight win to begin the 2014-15 season on the road against Nebraska Wesleyan. The two schools met in Pella last year, with the Dutch containing the Prairie Wolves, 64 – 50. Like Central, Nebraska Wesleyan is a young team; there are only two seniors on their varsity roster. In addition to being better at the free throw line (the Dutch were 12 – 23 in Saturday’s win over Waldorf), Coach Chelsea Petersen says she’s looking for her underclassmen to grow just as much mentally as they do physically. Tonight’s game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. tip-off inside Snyder Arena.

Meet The Panthers Winter Sports Tonight

Posted: Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 6:00 am

Knoxville’s Meet the Panthers Winter Sports Night is tonight at the high school. The night begins at six and will introduce all of the winter sports teams including girls and boys basketball, wrestling, and boys swimming. Both basketball teams will also have controlled scrimmages along with the Knoxville High School Dance Team performing. Admission is an eight-pack bottle of a sports beverage.

Eagles’ Girls Win Close One to Begin Year

Posted: Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 5:59 am

A close game went the way of Pella Christian’s girls’ basketball team on Friday night, when they took down Van Meter, 38 – 37. The Eagles used a 16 – 5 second quarter to take a 23 – 15 lead into the locker room, but almost coughed up the lead in the fourth quarter, getting outscored 10 – 3 by the Bulldogs before hanging on for the win. Hannah Beltman was the leading scorer for the Eagles, reaching double digits as Pella Christian begins the season with a 1 – 0 record. They’re off for the Thanksgiving break before coming back on December 2 for another non-conference game against a strong A-D-M squad.

Knoxville’s Cunningham To Run At D2 Nationals In December

Posted: Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 5:58 am

In his second year at Northwest Missouri State, Knoxville’s Wick Cunningham will race for an N-C-A-A Division two championship as he qualified for the nationals Saturday at the N-C-A-A Central region Championships at Wayne State College in Nebraska. Cunningham finished in the final automatic qualifier spot of 16th in a time of 32:17.2 seconds. Cunningham will travel to Louisville, Kentucky on December sixth to compete in the Division two Cross Country National Championships.

Lady Dutch Begin Promising Hoops Season Tonight

Posted: Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 5:57 am

With only one senior gone from a season ago and 92 percent of their shooting back this year, the Pella High girls’ basketball team will embark on what could be a long journey starting on Monday night at Des Moines North. The Lady Dutch almost lit up the “hundreds” column of their home scoreboard against the Polar Bears in last year’s opener, winning 91 – 21. Coach Jerod Garland says he’s looking for his team to gain some confidence in various areas to begin their season. Garland adds he wants his girls to get into a rhythm early and get out to a fast start in the game. The JV game will be played first at 6:00 p.m. with varsity to follow at around 7:15.

Trojans’ Girls Looking to Ramp Up Defense this Season

Posted: Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 5:52 am

The Pleasantville girls’ basketball team for the 2014-15 season brings back a good chunk of their offense from a four-win team a year ago. The Trojans scored just shy of 40 points per game, but allowed about 57 per contest to their opponents. Coach Aaron Fichter says a lot of time over the past two weeks of practice has been spent in getting better on the defensive end. Kennedy Core, who averaged almost 19 points per game is back, along with second leading scorer, Trisha Kunze, who had ten per game. Fichter adds he’d like a little more balanced scoring this season, and says he has a strong freshman class who may make a contribution to the team at some point. Pleasantville tips their season off at home on Tuesday against Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont.

Central Women Heat Up in Second Half, Blast Waldorf

Posted: Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 5:50 am

It was slim pickings early on, but the Central women’s basketball team prevailed on Saturday over Waldorf, 60 – 31, in a game that was live on 92.1 KRLS. The teams combined for just 37 points and 21 turnovers, 14 and 12, respectively, on the side of the Warriors. No player on the court reached double digits in any statistic, but it was another balanced effort offensively for the Dutch. Kenzie Vander Molen and Tina Lane each had nine points to lead the way, and Rachel Evans had another strong game off the bench, with six points, eight rebounds, and five of Central’s 17 steals. The Dutch improve to 3 – 0 on the season and they are off until Tuesday to play at Nebraska Wesleyan.

Horton Finishes Strong, Central Men’s Cross Country Eleventh Nationally

Posted: Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 5:49 am

At the NCAA Division III national cross country meet in Ohio, the Central men’s team, riddled with injuries down the stretch, finished their season strong, with an 11th-place overall showing. Eli Horton, who was one of the injured Dutch that had to miss the Iowa Conference meet, ran a career-best 24:33.8 race, good for 28th overall, beating his previous best by about two seconds. Knoxville graduate, Jamie Vander Veer, was second best for Central, coming in 56th place in a time that was just south of 25 minutes. Tim Shepherd, the other Knoxville alum, was 256th. Horton’s time was good enough to earn him his third all-America honor. Horton is the first athlete ever to be a three-time All-American. North Central Illinois beat out St. Olaf to win the Division III Championship. Central will graduate just three of their starting seven runners.

Knoxville Turns Back PCM To Win Season Opener

Posted: Saturday, November 22nd, 2014 at 6:00 am

The Knoxville Girls Basketball squad won a hard fought season opener over P-C-M last night 54-47. The Panthers led for most of the game building a lead as big as ten points in the fourth quarter only to see the Mustangs tie the game with a little under five minutes remaining. However, Meredith Cunningham hit back-to-back threes and the Panthers defense got stops when needed to pull away in the final minutes. Panthers Coach Jim Uitermarkt told KNIA/KRLS Sports while not perfect he will take a win like that. Cunningham lead Knoxville with 21 points, Carrie Chambers had 12 points all in the first half. Knoxville beings one-and-oh and will have a few days off before taking on Albia on December second.

Pella High Crowd Was ‘Twelfth Man’ in the Dome

Posted: Saturday, November 22nd, 2014 at 5:59 am

Outnumbering Sioux City Heelan’s fans from what appeared to be a 3:1 ratio, the Pella High football cheering section acted as an extra man on the field for the Little Dutch in Thursday night’s Class 3A state championship game. Pella’s crowd, wearing mostly green and waving their white rally towels, gave the game an almost “World Series” feel to it. Coach Jay McKinstrey says his team fed off of their fans’ intensity in both games in Cedar Falls. Noah Clayberg was named MVP of the game, which was won by the Little Dutch, 38 – 17, securing Pella’s first ever football state championship in Class 3A.

Little Hawkeye Conference Loaded on Girls’ Basketball Side

Posted: Saturday, November 22nd, 2014 at 5:57 am

With almost all of the teams bringing a majority of their roster back from last season, the Little Hawkeye Conference race in girls’ basketball will be a fun one to watch transpire down the stretch in February of 2015. Most of his starters back, save for Lauren Jungling, Pella Christian head girls’ basketball coach, Kevin Van Maanen, says it’s a very balanced league this season. Van Maanen adds that away from the conference, his team plays some very stiff competition, including Ballard and A-D-M. The Eagles continue their season on December 2 against the aforementioned Tigers.

Pleasantville Boys’ Hoops Should be Deep on the Bench

Posted: Saturday, November 22nd, 2014 at 5:52 am

Playing such a back-and-forth and up-and-down game like basketball, it pays to have guys on the bench that can spell your starters while not losing much in terms of production. This seems to be the case, at least in the early going, for the Pleasantville boys’ basketball team for the 2014-15 season. The Trojans lost three seniors last year but bring back a lot of talent. Coach Tom Wilkins says he’ll probably dress 14 or 15 guys, eight or nine of whom that should see some playing time. Pleasantville opens up their season on December 2 on the road against Melcher-Dallas.

Dutch Women Blast Blackburn, Earn Second Win

Posted: Saturday, November 22nd, 2014 at 5:50 am

In their home opener last night, the Central women’s basketball team forced 27 Blackburn (Illinois) turnovers and turned them into 26 points in a 71 – 50 non-conference victory. The Dutch were very balanced scoring; Rachel Evans led the way with 13 points, Mariah Swartzentruber had ten, and two others had nine each as the Dutch scored 36 points off the bench and came up with 18 steals. Central improves to 2 – 0 on the season and they are back on their home court this afternoon for a contest against Waldorf. You can hear the call live on 92.1 KRLS and with Cory Houser and Jacob Dreyer on the play-by-play. Pre-game coverage is set to begin at 1:45 p.m. with tip-off scheduled for two.

Little Dutch Overcome Five Turnovers, Blast Heelan for First State Championship

Posted: Friday, November 21st, 2014 at 6:00 am



It looked bleak at first, but the Pella High football team, despite five giveaways, three of them in the first half, prevailed over Sioux City Heelan in last night’s Class 3A state championship game, 38 – 17, in a game that was heard live on 92.1 KRLS. Pella drove down the field to begin the game and methodically put together an 11-play, 80-yard drive to take the early lead. However, the Crusaders turned two consecutive Little Dutch turnovers into 14 points and eventually took a 17 – 7 lead, before Pella answered with a touchdown before the end of the half, 17 – 14. The Crusaders got the ball first in the second half, and a big momentum swing happened a couple plays in. Pella would capitalize on short field position and score the first of three second half touchdowns to make it 38 – 17, all highlighted by another huge run by Nathan Henry. The Little Dutch set a State Championship Game record for rushing attempts, going for 340 yards on 61 carries. They finish the year 14 – 0, their first ever state championship, and graduate 16 seniors from their varsity squad.

Knoxville Tips Off Girls Basketball Against PCM

Posted: Friday, November 21st, 2014 at 5:59 am

Basketball for real starts tonight for the Knoxville girl’s squad. The Panthers are coming off a 10-13 season from last year. Like all of the sports, the Panthers will enter a new era of sports playing in the South Central Conference, however the Panthers will start with their neighbors to the north on Highway 14, P-C-M who is a member of the Heart of Iowa Conference. The two teams played a barn burner last year in Knoxville with the Panthers winning a high scoring affair 59-56. Both teams are a year older and return several key parts from last season. Knoxville Coach Jim Utiermarkt says he wants his girls initially to put 32 minutes of good basketball together, something they struggled with last year. Tonight’s J-V game is scheduled for six with the varsity tipping off at 7:30.

Pella Christian Girls Open Up Season Tonight

Posted: Friday, November 21st, 2014 at 5:58 am

Beginning the 2014-15 season the same way the last one ended, Pella Christian’s girls’ basketball team is on the road at Van Meter tonight to open up regular season play. The Eagles are without Lauren Jungling and Savanna Baugh, but bring back a lot of young talent that saw their first varsity playing time of their careers last season. Included in that is Tessa Howerzyl, who will look to lead this team that’s comprised of five seniors, three sophomores, a junior and a freshman. Coach Kevin Van Maanen says he is looking for his team to execute against the Bulldogs. Tip-off of the Eagles’ season tonight is at 7:30 p.m.

Consistent Schedule a Benefit for PCM Boys Basketball

Posted: Friday, November 21st, 2014 at 5:52 am

Somehow, some way, by the time a basketball season ends, a team is allotted 21 total games before the postseason. If you’re in a conference like the Heart of Iowa, you don’t get much room to schedule non-conference opponents. That’s the “dilemma” facing PCM year in and year out. On the boys’ side, Coach Fred Lorensen and his guys have had the same three out-of-conference games for the last few years: Pella, Knoxville, and Pella Christian. These are three formidable foes, the latter of which they often see in the postseason, and Coach Fred Lorensen says it’s a benefit to his team to have that kind of “consistency” each year. The Mustangs’ boys play their first game of the season on December 2 against South Hamilton.