Sports, Monday, June 15th

Written by Nathan Bloechl on June 15, 2020

By: Nathan Bloechl — sports@kilj.com 

We’re Back. Summer Sports Begin Across State Today:

It’s been 98 days between live broadcasts on KILJ, but that all comes to a close today as the Iowa High School baseball and softball season starts this evening statewide.

Tonight on KILJ-FM it will be Mount Pleasant baseball taking on Fort Madison at 5:30 p.m.

Mount Pleasant finished last season 21-11 overall and 12-4 in Southeast Conference play, while the Bloodhounds finished 16-15 overall and 6-10 in conference action.

The Panthers return several key players from last year’s squad including Nik Coble, Corbin Broeker, Clayton Lowery, Jaxon Hoyle and Chase Williamson.

We’ll take the air for tonight’s contest at 5;25 p.m.

The Mount Pleasant softball team also gets underway tonight as they play host to Fort Madison for a doubleheader.

Troy Mears’ group went 23-13 one year ago and return Conference Player of the Year Sydni Coleman.

Coleman went 16-7 in the circle for the Panthers last year with a sparkling 2.51 ERA, while also hitting .358 and driving in 30 runs at the plate.

Fort Madison ended their 2019 season 14-18, winning just four conference tilts.

They’ll begin tonight at 5:30 p.m. at Mapleleaf Athletic Complex.

Here’s tonight’s area baseball slate:

  • Central Lee at Danville
  • Wapello at Mediapolis
  • Pekin at New London
  • Winfield-Mount Union at Louisa-Muscatine

And the area softball schedule:

  •  Danville at Central Lee
  • Mediapolis at Wapello
  • New London at Pekin
  • Louisa-Muscatine at Winfield-Mount Union

Former Hawkeye Lands at Purdue:

Former Iowa Hawkeye defensive back D.J. Johnson is staying in the conference.

After announcing his plans to transfer, Johnson has now committed to Purdue University.

The Indiana native recorded 14 tackles last season including two pass breakups.

Johnson will sit out the 2020 season and have two years of eligibility remaining beginning in the 2021 campaign.

Purdue finished last season 4-8.

BIG 12, Kansas City Agree to Extension for Basketball Tournaments:

The Big 12 Conference has announced a one-year extension to the multi-year agreement for Kansas City to serve as the host site for the Phillips 66 Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships, meaning Iowa State’s basketball programs will compete for the BIG 12 Championship in Kansas City through 2025.

Kansas City was the initial host of both championships in the first six years of the Conference from 1997-2002, and again in 2005, 2008 and 2010-12.

The men’s postseason event has continued its run in Kansas City since 2010 while the women’s championship was set to return in 2020.

Due to COVID-19, the men’s championship was halted after the first two games while the women’s event was cancelled in its entirety.

PGA Tour Returns, Daniel Berger Wins Charles Schwab Challenge:

The PGA Tour returned weekend, the tour’s longest drought between tournaments since World War II, and Daniel Berger held off Collin Morikawa to win the Charles Schwab Challenge.

At the beginning of the week 487 players, caddies, officials and other personnel were tested without a positive result.

Jordan Spieth finished 10th at -10, while Rory McIlroy tied for 32nd at -6.

Berger won the tournament after defeating Morikawa in a playoff.

The RBC Heritage Tournament will begin this Thursday at Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head, South Carolina.