Kirkwood’s Allie Mengler waits for the pitch
Eagles now move on to the district championship for a chance at nationals
Cedar Rapids, Iowa (May 1, 2016)-The Kirkwood softball team won the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division II Region XI-A Championship after beating Iowa Lakes 14-3 in five innings. The Eagles now move on to host Dawson Community College (Mont.) in a best of three series in the NJCAA Division II District H Championship beginning on May 6.
After regionals, the fourth-ranked Eagles are on a 30-game win streak while compiling an overall record of 54-4. The team was near perfect in conference games, going 27-1 over the course of the season.
Freshman outfielder Taylor Nearad, a Solon native, is having an incredible season by leading the NJCAA in RBIs (115), home runs (25) and batting average (.619). Nearad also earned conference Player of the Week honors three times.
On the defensive side of the ball, Kirkwood has two players nationally ranked in the top five for wins. All-American sophomore Nicky Simpson, who is from Conrad, Iowa, is third in the nation with 26. Lexi Kinnaird, a freshman from Tiffin, Iowa, is tied for fifth with 22 wins.
The Dawson Buccaneers (31-8) won the Region 13 title by beating Dakota County Technical College (Minn.) on Sunday by a score of 9-3.
The District H Championship will be a best of three series beginning at 2 p.m. on Friday (5/6) in Cedar Rapids. If game three is needed, it will be played on Saturday (5/7) at noon.
The district champion will move on to the NJCAA Division II Softball National Tournament in Clinton, Miss. on May 18-21.
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