Feb. 12, 2009

Courtesy of Simpson Athletics

No. 15/17 Simpson College (20-3, 12-2 IIAC) clinched its third Iowa Conference title in the past four years Feb. 11 in Indianola.  A 105-66 victory over Central College (8-14, 4-9 IIAC) combined with losses by Loras College and Wartburg College Wednesday night secured the league title, the No. 1 seed in the Iowa Conference Tournament, and a first round bye in the conference tourney.  It is the seventh Iowa Conference title for the Storm in the past 11 years.

Central got off to a hot start, making 11 of its first 18 field goal attempts with the Dutch leading by as much as eight.  Simpson trailed 28-25 with 8:59 remaining in the first half, Simpson mounted a 28-3 run that was capped off by an Amy Hamilton (So., Ames, Iowa, Ames H.S.) three-pointer.   Leading 53-35, the Storm opened the second half by making eight of its first nine field goals.  Simpson would shoot 63.3% (19-of-30) in the second half and 52.6% (40-of-76) for the game.

Whitney Franker (Sr., Urbandale, Iowa, Urbandale H.S.) led five Simpson players in double figures as she posted 16 points.  Maria Oliver (Sr., Florissant, Mo., Hazelwood Central H.S.) scored 14 points, grabbed seven rebounds, and dished out a career high seven assists.  Hamilton, Division III’s leading three-point shooter, was 3-of-4 from beyond the arc on her way to 13 points.  Stacy Schutjer (Fr., Titonka, Iowa, WCLT H.S.) scored 12 points, had eight rebounds, and blocked three shots.  Katie Kitzman (Sr., Gilman, Iowa, East Marshall H.S.) tallied 11 points.  Laura Porter led the Dutch with 15 points.  Andrea Clark charted eight points and 10 rebounds.

“I was very pleased with the win,” said Simpson head coach Brian Niemuth.  “I thought we played with a great intensity on defense after first 10 minutes which got us into our running game.  This was truly a team win as we had very balanced scoring, nobody played over 18 minutes, and everybody contributed to his victory which clinched the Iowa Conference championship.”