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Sports

A legacy of commitment

Kevin Miller steps down as Solon head football coach

SOLON– Head Coach Kevin Miller never missed a football practice in 19 years.
“Never. No matter how sick,” he said the day after hanging up his cleats. “I felt that’s what I needed to do to, to provide the necessary example for our players. That was my own choice.”
Miller, 49, submitted his letter of resignation from the coaching position Wednesday, March 11, and spoke to his team the same day.
A Solon native, he graduated in 1989 after his team won the school’s first state title in the fall of 1988.

School closures suspend Iowa high school spring activities

DES MOINES– Following Sunday’s announcements from Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, all spring activities of Iowa’s high school Unified Activities partners – the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union (IGHSAU), the Iowa High School Athletic Association (IHSAA), the Iowa High School Music Association (IHSMA), and the Iowa High School Speech Association (IHSSA) – will be prohibited through the state’s K-12 school recommended closure of four weeks.

Dan Gable Wrestler of the Year Award recipients named

CEDAR FALLS– Fareway Stores, Inc. and BodyArmor presented the Dan Gable Wrestler of the Year Awards, in coordination with IAwrestle and IWCOA. Three finalists from each of the three state wrestling classes and three women finalists attended an awards ceremony in advance of the premier invitational, War at West Gym.
Fans had the ability to vote once per day for the top wrestler in each category until Feb. 7 on IAwrestle.com. Public votes were tallied and the top voted wrestler received an extra vote towards the IWCOA committee vote. The following athletes were recognized as 2020 recipients:

Girls track starts strong at UD, Dickinson

COVID-19 makes it ‘wait and see’

DUBUQUE– With spring break this week, it is especially quiet in the classroom and out on the track. What lies ahead with the coronavirus pandemic should show major changes in how classroom and outside school activities are conducted through spring, in Solon, in Iowa and across the nation.
But there has been a start. For Solon’s girls, that came March 3, at the University of Dubuque. With a fourth-place finish among 20 Eastern Iowa teams, the Lady Spartans logged 40.5 points.
On the way there, they picked up first- through fifth-place points in six of the 11 indoor events.

Lady Spartan Holtkamp named to Print Sports Writers 3rd Team

DES MOINES– The Iowa Print Sports Writers Association (IPSWA), founded in February of 2018 to carry on the tradition of newspapers selecting all-state teams for Iowa high school sports, announced its 2020 Girls Basketball All-State Teams on Tuesday, March 10.
Class 5A, West Des Moines Dowling Catholic senior Caitlin Clark was named IPSWA Miss Iowa Basketball 2020. The honor was conveyed after she averaged 33.7 points per game (scoring more than 2,500 points in her career) and shooting 50.9 percent from the field, while making 84 three-pointers.

Bluder named to all-conference 2nd Team

Cusick and Shive recognized by WaMaC

SOLON– Three Solon juniors earned WaMaC Conference honors following the release of the 2019-20 All-Conference Boys Basketball teams.
David Bluder was named to the East Division’s Second Team, while Ben Cusick and Carson Shive received WaMaC Recognition, formerly Honorable Mention.

Heartbreak

CCA girls’ first state tourney trip ends in quarterfinals loss to No. 1 N. Scott

DES MOINES– You could just about hear the hearts break…
As the final seconds of a Class 4A state tournament quarterfinal game against No. 1 North Scott ticked off the game clock, Clear Creek Amana (CCA) senior Karsyn Stratton sat on the bench, silent and staring straight ahead toward the jam-packed CCA student section with tears welling in her eyes. The best season in CCA girls’ basketball history was coming to an end.

The Creek Boys head to state

Withrow’s 26 points powers CCA to first state tourney appearance since 1993

MUSCATINE– One week after the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) varsity girls made history with their first ever state tournament appearance, the varsity boys basketball team followed them to the Wells Fargo Arena, in Des Moines, with their own state tourney appearance, the first for the boys since 1993.

One game closer to state

Withrow’s 25 points power CCA past Keokuk in 76-66 substate win

TIFFIN– Clear Creek Amana’s (CCA) varsity boys came a step closer to following the girls to the state basketball tournament as they conquered the Chiefs of Keokuk Thursday, Feb. 27, in a Class 3A Substate 5 semifinal game at home.
The Clippers topped the Chiefs 76-66 and advanced to a substate final on Wednesday, March 4, (after this edition’s deadline) against Davenport Assumption in Muscatine.

A BIG win and a first for the Creek Girls

Upset win over Marion sends CCA to the first state tournament in school history

MARION– “It doesn’t even feel real!”
That’s what Clear Creek Amana (CCA) senior and four-year varsity starter Karsyn Stratton said when asked about knocking off second-ranked Marion in a Class 4A regional final game, and heading to Des Moines for the first girls state basketball tournament appearance in school history. The Clippers defeated the Marion Indians soundly, 66-49, on Tuesday, Feb. 25, at Marion, to punch their ticket to the 2020 state tourney.

Liberty’s McPherson earns MVC Valley Division 2nd Team honors

Three Bolts named to Girls All-Division Basketball teams

NORTH LIBERTY– Three Liberty High varsity girls were named to the 2019-2020 Mississippi Valley Conference (MVC) Girls Basketball All-Division Selections list for the Valley Division, released on Wednesday, Feb. 26.
Senior Sam McPherson was a Second Team pick after leading the Lightning in scoring with 217 points in the regular season. McPherson recently signed a Letter of Intent to play basketball for Mount Mercy University, in Cedar Rapids.
Freshman Keiko Ono-Fullard and senior Isabel Smith were both named to the Valley Division Honorable Mention team.

Mustangs stomp on Bolts’ state tourney dream

Liberty boys fall 52-49 in substate semifinal to Dubuque Hempstead

DUBUQUE– The 2019-2020 varsity basketball season came to a sudden end for the Liberty High Lightning Friday, Feb. 28, on the road at Dubuque Hempstead in a Class 4A substate semifinal game.
The Mustangs stomped on the Bolts’ hopes for a state tournament appearance by topping Liberty, 52-49. Hempstead previously knocked off Liberty 69-66 in overtime on Jan. 28.
Liberty trailed throughout the contest with the Mustangs leading 11-6 at the end of the first quarter, 24-12 at halftime and 37-25 at the end of the third.