Sports Briefs


Kelly honored

Iowa sophomore guard Jake Kelly was named Big Ten Player of the Week on Monday after leading the Hawkeyes to a 70-60 overtime win over Michigan on Sunday in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Kelly, who recorded career-highs with 23 points, nine assists, and eight rebounds in his 45-minute effort against the Wolverines, earned the honor for the first time in his Hawkeye career.

“This is a deserving honor for Jake,” Iowa head coach Todd Lickliter said in a statement. “Offensively, we’ve been pleased with his decision-making. Defensively, he has guarded our opponent’s most aggressive perimeter player and has really taken that responsibility to heart. He’s got great length and I think he’s a terrific defender.”

Forced to play point guard in a trying season for Iowa, Kelly has averaged 11 points per game in Big Ten play and held one of the league’s leading scorers, Michigan’s Manny Harris, to nine points on Sunday. Kelly scored nine of the team’s 14 points in overtime against the Wolverines and combined for 42 points in the Iowa’s last two games.

The Hawkeyes (14-13, 4-10) will travel to No. 9 Michigan State Wednesday night for a 7:35 p.m. tip-off on the Big Ten Network.

— by Charlie Kautz

Gymnast Simbhudas honored

Iowa sophomore gymnast Rebecca Simbhudas has been rewarded for the hard work she put in for the GymHawks last week by being named co-Big Ten Gymnast of the Week.

In Iowa’s most recent meet on Feb. 20, the GymHawks traveled to Southern Utah, where the Ontario native scored a 9.925 on the balance beam, the highest score of any Iowa gymnast since 2006. She also placed second in the all-around with a solid score of 39.250.

On Feb. 16, in Iowa’s Pink Meet against Iowa State, Simbhudas captured her first collegiate all-around title with a 39.225. She led the GymHawks into their first season sweep of Iowa State since 1992.

Against the Cyclones, Simbhudas won the uneven bars with a 9.825 and scored a 9.850 on the balance beam to win the individual title on those events. As a late replacement for an injured Kristen Ward, she scored a solid 9.800 on the floor exercise, helping her cause in winning the all-around.
The last Iowa gymnast to receive the honor was older sister and Hawkeye senior Jenifer Simbhudas last March.

— by Evelyn Lau

Weil honored

Brittany Weil was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week on Monday after another stellar weekend on the mound for the Iowa softball team.

The senior from Garden Grove, Calif., picked up three wins for the Hawkeyes at the K-Club Classic in Kennesaw, Ga. and added two appearances in relief — pitching a total of 19 2/3 innings without surrendering a run. The tournament was highlighted by Weil’s second no-hitter of the season, which came against Kennesaw State, one week after throwing the first no-hitter of her career. She is only the second pitcher in Iowa history to pitch two no-hitters in a season. She was drafted Feb. 17 by the Akron Racers.

Weil (7-3) has posted red-hot numbers all-season in leading Iowa to an early 12-3 record. She has pitched eight complete games, surrendering 26 hits in 214 at-bats for an opponents’ batting average of .121. Weil has tallied 90 strikeouts already this season and now sits just 124 behind Iowa’s career mark of 946, set by Lisa Birocci in 2005. Her season ERA (1.08) is good enough for fourth in the Big Ten, according to conference databases.

— by Jon Linder

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