Archive for September 9, 2014

VASQUEZ, SPROUSE EARN CONFERENCE HONORS FOR INDIANA UNIVERSITY KOKOMO

Indiana University Kokomo Cougars

The Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference is proud to announce Player of the Week honors for September 1st – September 7th in Men’s Cross Country, Women’s Cross Country, Men’s Soccer, Women’s Soccer and Volleyball

Javier Vasquez, Indiana University Kokomo – Men’s Cross Country Runner of the Week

Senior – Frankfort, IN

Indiana University Kokomo senior Javier Vasquez was named the KIAC men’s cross country runner of the week by KIAC officials on Monday, September 8th. IU Kokomo competed in the Crimson Wave Invitational on September 6th in Hammond, IN. Vasquez finished 8th out of 60 runners in the 4 mile event with a time of 20:45. The Cougars will return to action on September 19th at the Indiana Intercollegiate event in West Lafayette, IN.

Karly Sprouse, Indiana University Kokomo – Women’s Cross Country Runner of the Week

Freshman – Kokomo, IN

Indiana University Kokomo freshman Karly Sprouse was named the KIAC women’s cross country runner of the week by KIAC officials on Monday, September 8th. IU Kokomo competed in the Crimson Wave Invitational on September 6th in Hammond, IN. Sprouse finished 5th out of 44 runners in the 5K with a time of 21:47. Her time is the third fastest in the history of the women’s cross country program. The Cougars will return to action on September 19th at the Indiana Intercollegiate event in West Lafayette, IN.

Tabea Dalliard, Point Park University – Volleyball Player of the Week

5-6 Freshman – Morel-Filet, Switzerland

Point Park University freshman Tabea Dalliard was named the KIAC volleyball player of the week by KIAC officials on Monday, September 8th. Point Park finished the week 4-0 after defeating Carlow University (3-0), IU Southeast (3-0), Lawrence Technological University (3-0) and Cincinnati Christian University (3-0). Point Park libero Dalliard tallied 44 digs in four matches. She passed a .982 receiving percentage for the week. The Pioneers are currently 6-6 overall and 3-0 in conference play. They will return to action on September 9th when they host Edinboro University.

Meredith Ury, Asbury University – Women’s Soccer Offensive Player of the Week

5-8 Senior – Elizabeth City, NC 

Asbury University senior Meredith Ury was named the KIAC women’s soccer offensive player of the week by KIAC officials on Monday, September 8th. Asbury won their only contest last week, defeating Shawnee State 3-2. Ury scored a pair of goals including the game-winner against Shawnee State. The senior forward has four goals in two games this season. The Eagles are currently 2-0. They will return to action on September 9th when they host St. Catharine’s.

Kendra Steepe, Cincinnati Christian University – Women’s Soccer Defensive Player of the Week

5-8 Freshman – Marysville, OH

Cincinnati Christian University freshman Kendra Steepe was named the KIAC women’s soccer defensive player of the week by KIAC officials on Monday, September 8th. Steepe averaged 11.33 saves in three games last week. The freshman goalkeeper recorded 9 saves against Mount Vernon Nazarene University and St. Catharine’s. She also tallied 16 saves against the College of Mount St. Joseph. The Eagles finished 0-3 last week. They are currently 0-3-1 on the season and will return to action on September 10th when they host Berea College.

Garrett Davis, Asbury University – Men’s Soccer Offensive Player of the Week

5-10 Senior – Versailles, KY

Asbury University senior Garrett Davis was named the KIAC men’s soccer offensive player of the week by KIAC officials on Monday, September 8th. This is his second offensive player of the week award of the season. Asbury finished the week 1-1. Garrett scored a goal in a 2-1 loss to Union College and scored a goal in a 3-1 win against Shawnee State. The senior forward now has four goals in three games this season. The Eagles are currently 2-1 overall and will return to action on September 9th when they travel to St. Catharine’s.

Naruemon Wiriyachon, Brescia University – Women’s Tennis Player of the Week

Freshman – Dunkirk, MD

Brescia University freshman Naruemon Wiriyachon was named the KIAC women’s tennis player of the week by KIAC officials on Monday, September 8th. Brescia opened their season at the St. Louis College of Pharmacy Invitational September 5th and 6th. Wiriyachon claimed first place in the B flight singles. She recorded a 6-2, 6-3 win against Webster University. She also had a 6-4, 6-3 win against teammate Tarsilla Duck and a 6-3, 6-2 win against Principia College. The Bearcats will return to action on September 12th when they host Cedarville University.

Courtesy of the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference

PROSPECT LEAGUE COMING TO KOKOMO MUNICIPAL STADIUM IN 2015

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KOKOMO, Ind. – For most big league ball players their prospect debuts begin or continue in summer wood bat leagues across the nation. With 50 different summer collegiate leagues all around the US and Canada it’s a big business and a major driver towards the scouting and development of future MLB stars. Of the 50 plus leagues, only a select few drive the bulk of the collegiate prospects. Towards the top of that list is a league named the Prospect League, the league that will be coming to the great city of Kokomo.

MKE Sports & Entertainment, a sports and entertainment company, headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin is excited to announce that baseball will return to the “City of Firsts”, for the first time in 54 years. Under the deal, MKE Sports & Entertainment will bring and operate an expansion team playing in the Prospect League beginning in the summer of 2015. In addition, the Prospect League is looking into moving it’s corporate headquarters to Kokomo in an effort to grow and improve the league.

“I believe Kokomo will be one of the premier franchises in all of summer collegiate ball,” said Prospect League Founder and Chillicothe Paints owner Chris Hanners. “The city is a perfect spot for a franchise and we see it as the showcase for our league going forward. Given the partnership between the city of Kokomo and MKE Sports & Entertainment we have ambitious goals for the Prospect League and this transaction positions the league to make great strides.”

City of Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight stated, “This is a proud day for the city and the residents of Kokomo. We are bringing baseball back to this city and doing so with terrific partners. We interviewed a number of potential organizations and chose Mike’s group because of his track record as a successful entrepreneur and his work with a like city to help transform a city through sports and entertainment related venues. Since we see the stadium as a catalyst for continued economic development for our city it was a perfect fit. Mike has a vision that goes beyond just baseball and we are excited about all that can be done.”

Michael Zimmerman, Founder and CEO of MKE Sports & Entertainment stated, “I have been all over the Midwest in the past six months looking for the right opportunity for baseball. After spending the day with Mayor Goodnight and city staff, as well as attending a local youth baseball game, I was hooked on Kokomo. The energy of the community with their love for sports and the revitalization project currently underway downtown is the perfect storm…. it’s a real recipe for success. I am truly humbled and grateful that the city has chosen my group to represent the great city of Kokomo.”

The new team will compete in the Prospect League and will play all of its home games at the new 4,000-capicity Kokomo Municipal Stadium located south of Wildcat Creek between Union Street & Apperson Way. This is the first new baseball stadium in Kokomo, since Highland Park Stadium was built in 1955. That stadium was once home of the Kokomo Dodgers (1956-1961), a minor league affiliate of the former Brooklyn Dodgers. Construction on Kokomo Municipal Stadium is already underway and is expected to open in the spring of 2015.

MKE Sports & Entertainment has also launched a contest to seek community input for the team nickname. Fans can visit www.KokomoBaseball.com to submit their team name for a chance to win a $2,500 cash prize. The team name, colors and logo will be unveiled at a special event; exact date and location will be announced. Season tickets can be reserved on a first come, first serve basis by submitting a $100 deposit online as well.

 

DEAN’S LIST: NCC FOOTBALL STUGGLES ONCE AGAIN IN PRE-CONFERENCE GAMES

North Central Conference

THE DEAN’S LIST BY DEAN HOCKNEY

Here we go again, my annual look at the first two weeks of the North Central Conference football season. And like most years, it does not look pretty – although it is improved thanks to the addition of McCutcheon to the Conference of Champions. With McCutcheon being the only undefeated NCC team left at 2-0, the conference stands at 6-14 (.300 winning percentage) throughout the non-conference part of the schedule competed.

I will admit, that is an improvement over last year, where the NCC stood 2-12 (.143) at the same point in the season. For comparison, the NCC was 3-13 (.188) in 2012 and 4-12 (.250) in 2011 – the first year the Sports Journal covered high school football. If one takes out the three new Tippecanoe County squads, the conference would have four wins, which is still an improvement over last year.

Another telling stat is the scoring by NCC schools. In the first 20 games of 2014, the NCC has been outscored 367-615. If one averages out those numbers, the NCC is being outscored 18.35 to 30.75 points per game – which is better than where the conference stood one year ago after week two (16.71 to 36.35). So defenses are giving up nearly a touchdown less per game and offenses are scoring 1.6 points more per game.

But a big question that lingers is who the NCC defeats in the pre-conference schedule. In week one, the NCC was 4-6 with Class 5A Kokomo dropping down to defeat 4A Mt. Vernon, 4A Marion dropping down for a come-from-behind win over 2A Madison-Grant (a team Eastern beat last Friday) and 5A Richmond dropped down to beat 4A Connersville. That leaves only 5A McCutcheon with a solid win over 5A No. 10 Zionsville in week one. The NCC was 2-8 in week two, with 4A Logansport dropping down to beat 3A Peru and 5A McCutcheon dropping down to beat 3A West Lafayette.

Where does that leave the NCC? In games where they play bigger schools the conference is 0-2 (both courtesy of 5A Huntington North going up to play 6A teams). Against same classed schools it is 1-5 and against lower classed schools – where the NCC should dominate –  the conference is a 5-7.

As I was reminded by my friends last year at the Hancock County Sports Digest (Twitter @HancockCoSports), the much smaller Hoosier Heritage Conference is 24-3 against the NCC over the last four years, with Kokomo’s two wins over Mt. Vernon and Richmond beating Shelbyville in a sectional matchup as the lone bright spots for the once-mighty NCC against a conference that has zero Class 5A schools, six Class 4A programs and a pair of Class 3A affiliates (compared to the NCC’s one Class 6A program, six Class 5A and three Class 4A schools).

And to think, New Castle (1-1) has left the NCC for the HHC after losing 34 consecutive times to Kokomo. Since the 2000 campaign, the Trojans are a measly 18-124 (.126) – so good luck to New Castle in its new football conference.

With the NCC being strong in so many other sports, football just hasn’t kept pace. I really don’t have any commentary on this typically slow start by the conference; it is just interesting information and goes to show how the conference has fallen behind as football has picked up around Indiana. If anyone watched the Warren Central or Cathedral or Ben Davis or Carmel game highlights, you would have noticed how much those teams looked like small college programs. Thankfully, Kokomo has built new locker room facilities and is trying to improve the look of a huge money-making program.

As Wildkat fans know, the squad started strong against Mt. Vernon with a convincing victory. But last week’s defeat – and the way it happened – could be crushing to the psyche of the Kats. Kokomo has solid senior leadership while still being young at several key positions, so I hope they realize that was a non-conference loss. They stand at 1-1 with a loss to a ranked 5A team and rival Marion visits this Friday night. One loss doesn’t make a season, especially when the conference campaign hasn’t even started yet.

Until next time, remember to keep the man and ship in sports – and I’ll see you at the game.

Dean Hockney is the publisher of the Sports Journal of Central Indiana and sports editor of the Kokomo Herald. You can follow him on Twitter (@Sports_Journal) for the latest in local sports news and game reports.