METROSPORTSREPORT.COM- CEDAR RAPIDS, IA-- Pitching, pitching and more pitching. That was Todd Rima's primary goal on the recruiting trail this year as he stocked the Kirkwood baseball team for the 2015 campaign. Mission accomplished, he feels. Rima has signed 16 new players for next season. Ten of them are pitchers. And nine of the new players are Iowans, another priority.
Three of the new players hail from Illinois and three are from New York. Rima thinks he's signed the arms he needs to keep improving. Kirkwood finished 30-17 this season and 14-11 in the conference, but he wants more. He feels pitching is the path to success. "That was really big for us," he said. "We have two returning pitchers that gave us a lot of innings, and everybody else is going to be new. "So we had to go out and get guys who aren't going to be ready in a year. They need to be ready right now. And we hope that we've done that."
CEDAR RAPIDS, IA-- Three more Kirkwood Eagle sophomores have decided on where they will continue their collegiate baseball career. Shane Kemp (OF/RHP) has committed to play for George Washington University in Washington, DC (NCAA D1). Kemp (Waterloo, IA) hit .288 this spring and pitched 12.2 innings with 10 strikeouts for the Eagles.
Shawn Hagarty (UTL) and Will Ross (RHP) have committed to play in St. Charles, Missouri for Lindenwood University. Hagarty (Waterloo, IA) was very instrumental for the Eagles this past spring as he hit .293 with a .413 on base percentage, stole 13 bases, and had 11 hit-by-pitches. Ross (Iowa City, IA) was stellar for the Eagles on the mound during the 2014 spring. As a weekend starter he compiled a 4-3 record with 52 strikeouts in 56 innings.
CEDAR RAPIDS, IA-- Kirkwood enters post-season play on Thursday, May 8th. The Region XI tournament will be held in Waterloo, Iowa at Riverfront Stadium. The winner will host the North Plains District, consisting of Region 9, 11, 13 winners. The North Plains District is scheduled for May 17-18. The winner will be awarded a bid to the 2014 NJCAA Baseball World Series in Enid, Oklahoma. Kirkwood Community College (29-17-1) enters the tournament as the #4 seed and plays at 10:00am on Thursday morning. To view the 2014 NJCAA Region XI Baseball Tournament Bracket click here.