The Ottumwa Courier


January 19, 2013

No. 10 Big Reds earn 11th straight win; Career night for Mikels not enough for Mustangs

BLOOMFIELD — It was an amazing night for Park Mikels.

But it wasn’t the kind of night he truly wanted.

Mikels had a career night for the Davis County boys basketball team on Friday, pouring in 36 points on 13-23 shooting. He also grabbed 10 rebounds for a double-double to lead the Mustangs in an amazing individual effort.

“It was nice, but I wish we would have won,” Mikels said.

One great night for one Mustang was not enough to overcome another great night for one of the hottest teams in southern Iowa. No. 10 (Class 3A) Centerville got double-figure scoring efforts from four different players, including 23 points from Kolton Gonnerman, to earn their 11th straight win with an 82-72 South Central Conference victory over the Mustangs Friday in Bloomfield.

“I think we are more of a balanced team,” Gonnerman said after a 10-19 shooting effort of his own. “Our leading scorers change every game. We’re playing as a team right now and that’s what you want.”

Centerville needed every bit of their balanced contribution to hold off Mikels and the Mustangs on Friday. Though they never trailed, the Big Reds never had a comfortable lead until back-to-back field goals by Gonnerman and a 3-point play by Logan Dabney put Centerville up 13 with four minutes to go.

“I thought our kids held their composure very well,” Centerville head coach Matt Kruzich said. “We knew Mikels was going to be a scoring factor, but we just wanted to build a lead and hold on to it until the end.”

It was a far cry from their previous meeting in Centerville back in December, when the Big Reds rolled to an 83-40 win over the Mustangs.

“We struggled early in the year and when we played them the first time, it was a running clock,” Davis County head coach Jeff Graves said after just the second loss for his team in their last nine games. “I’ll give the boys credit. Nobody panicked. Nobody bellied up. The guys worked hard in practice and have really improved.”

Kruzich echoed those sentiments.

“Coach Graves has done a great job with that team,” Kruzich said. “We beat them by 40 last month, and this time they were a team to be reckoned with. They were well prepared and ready to go.”

Still, Centerville attempted to pull away early against the Mustangs by scoring 11 of the first 15 points. Mikels and Austin Erwine, however, helped bring Davis County back into the game with 19 first-half points.

The Mustangs got as close as two late in the first quarter before a Garret Faris 3-pointer opened Centerville’s lead to 18-13 after one quarter. Faris and Gonnerman each poured in 11 points in the opening half as the Big Reds gradually opened a 10-point lead.

But Faris eventually fouled out and Dabney also battled foul difficulty despite a 14-point, 14-rebound double-double. Still, the Big Reds found ways to hold off any Davis County charges thanks to Gonnerman’s play and a 17-point, eight-rebound, seven-assist night from Michael Starcevich.

“It’s great to know that we don’t have to rely on one or two guys,” Gonnerman said. “Whoever’s having the hot night, that’s who we’ll go to.”

Mikels did his best to give Davis County a come-from-behind victory. The senior scored 22 points in the second half, including the Mustangs’ only two 3-pointers in the fourth quarter.

“The kids aren’t selfish. They know Park needs to shoot to give us a chance to win,” Graves said. “Park’s put in a lot of time and has done a lot of work to make himself that kind of player.”

Davis County (8-7, 3-2) hosts Chariton next Friday looking to finish as high as possible in the SCC. The position at the top has been cornered by the 10th-ranked Big Reds, who moved to 11-1 overall on the season with a perfect 6-0 conference mark.

“We like hearing that term Goliath,” Gonnerman said. “We like being the Goliaths of this conference.”

Centerville hosts Moulton-Udell on Tuesday in non-conference play looking to continue building towards meeting some very lofty goals later this year. Kruzich feels this year’s Big Red team could be one of more special squads he’s coached.

“I’ve had a lot of good players come through my program and a lot of good teams,” Kruzich said. “I really feel like this team could compete with any of our teams we’ve had in the past.”

“We’re looking for the ultimate goal to go to state,” Gonnerman added. “Our main goal is to win conference, move on to districts and make it to Wells Fargo Arena.”

No. 10 (3A) Centerville 82, Davis County 72

Centerville        18     23  20  21    —    82    

Davis County       13     20  18  21    —    72    

Centerville (82) — Kolton Gonnerman 23, Michael Starcevich 17, Logan Dabney 15, Garrett Faris 12, Payton Busch 10, Levi Sebolt 5. Totals 31-67 17-27 82.

3-point goals — 3-15 (Faris 2-5, Busch 1-7, Gonnerman 0-1, Sebolt 0-1, Starcevich 0-1). Fouled out — Faris. Rebounds — 45 (Dabney 14, Busch 10, Starcevich 8, Faris 6, Gonnerman 5, B.J. Gavigan 2). Assists — 21 (Starcevich 7, Busch 4, Gonnerman 3, Sebolt 3, Dabney 2, Faris 2). Steals — 13 (Busch 3, Sebolt 3, Starcevich 3, Faris 2, Dabney, Gonnerman). Blocks — 3 (Dabney 3). Total fouls — 21. Turnovers — 18.

Davis County (72) — Park Mikels 36, Austin Erwine 14, Calvin Utt 9, Justin Utt 4, Damen Dixon 3, Jacob Jones 3, Tyler Knapp 2, Colton Roberts 1. Totals 26-63 18-32 72.

3-point goals — 2-8 (Erwine 1-2, Mikels 1-2, Jones 0-1, Knapp 0-1, J. Utt 0-2). Fouled out — Roberts. Rebounds — 48 (Mikels 10, Erwine 9, C. Utt 6, Kyle Birchmier 5, Jones 5, J. Utt 4, Wyatt Garmon 2, Knapp 2, Roberts 2, McKane Wells 2, Dixon). Assists — 18 (Dixon 5, Roberts 4, C. Utt 4, Mikels 2, Birchmier, Erwine, Jones). Steals — 7 (Mikels 4, Dixon 2, C. Utt). Blocks — 2 (Mikels 2). Total fouls — 18. Turnovers — 20.

Text Only
  • Ottumwa Youth Football begins in August OTTUMWA – A Future Bulldog Camp will be put on for second, third and fourth graders from 6-7:30 p.m. on the Ottumwa High School practice field Monday, Aug. 11. The camp will be put on for fifth and sixth graders from 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 12th at

    August 1, 2014

  • 0807 OTT Sports Hank Hammer photo Ottumwa swimmer earns spot on Team Iowa IOWA CITY — Ottumwa swimmer Hank Hammer turned in a terrific performance for the Pella Swim Club at the ISI Long Course State Championship last weekend at the University of Iowa. Hammer swam an AAA time and garnered a top-seven finish in the 13-14 b

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0802 OTT Sports Ottumwa Babe Ruth photo Ottumwa 14s clear opening MWP regional hurdle BOONVILLE, Mo. — Joey Mitchell came up with not one, but two bases-clearing doubles in his last two at-bats. After snapping a 3-3 tie in the fifth with his first three-run hit, Mitchell gave the Ottumwa 14-year-olds a big insurance hit to drive in th

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0802 OTT Sports Adam Denniston photo Denniston makes Elite World Series OTTUMWA — Adam Denniston overcame the spitefulness of long odds by earning a spot at the 11U USSSA Elite Class World Series. To secure one of the 15 spots on the roster, Adam Denniston, the younger brother of Austin Denniston (a member of the 2012

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0802 OTT Sports Otis Roby Twin Cedars photo Perfect Rematch DES MOINES — They were the last team to beat Twin Cedars on the baseball diamond. Now, Mason City Newman is the last obstacle for the Sabers to clear in 2014 to cap a perfect summer. Call it fitting. Call it symbolic. Call it much-anticipated. Just d

    August 1, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0801 OTT Sports Mason City Newman celebrates Walk-off win sends Newman Catholic back to 1A finals DES MOINES — Top-seeded Mason City Newman Catholic advanced to the state tournament finals with a walk-off 5-4 win over fourth-seeded Don Bosco in the first of two Class 1A semifinal games Thursday afternoon at Principal Park.Don Bosco scored two run

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0801 OTT Sports 2A State Baseball photo Fast start powers North Polk back into 2A Final DES MOINES — Top-seeded North Polk beat fifth-seeded and Heart of Iowa Conference rival Roland-Story 6-2 in the first Class 2A semifinal Thursday evening at Principal Park.The Comets scored all six runs in the first two innings, three each inning, en

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Southeast Iowa Fishing Reports Rathbun ReservoirThe current lake level is 905.38 feet. The water temperature is 77 degrees. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try using chicken liver. Target areas in coves and bays. Walleye - Slow: Anglers have been having some success trolling crankbaits ar

    August 1, 2014

  • On Tap Saturday Prep Baseball Class 1A State Finals Twin Cedars vs. Newman Catholic at Des Moines (Principal Park), Noon

    August 1, 2014

  • 0802 OTT Sports IHCC Soccer Coach Doug Seigle mug IHCC Soccer Training Camp date set OTTUMWA– Head coach Doug Seigle has announced the date for players on this year's roster, and those who hope to make the squad, to report for the start of preseason workouts. Seigle says all IHCC women’s and men's soccer players who have signed to pl

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

Sports photo reprints