An extra step leads to the biggest pedestal


Morgan Flynn

The Storm women’s team is back to back conference champions.

by Desmond Alexander, Staff Reporter

Becoming a championship-caliber team has shown to take more than simply winning games. 

Putting in additional work after hours, balancing school and taking every opportunity to better their craft has shown to pay off for the Simpson College women’s basketball team during their phenomenal season. 

Still sitting with only one loss, Simpson recently won the A-R-C championship with a 79-65 win over the Dubuque Spartans, crowning them the A-R-C champions with tournament basketball still left to play.

For coach Brian Niemuth, coaching back-to-back A-R-C champions demonstrates what it takes to be on the top of the conference. Defeating Coe College 89-84 in an overtime debut in 2021, Niemuth takes time to reflect on his past success.

“It’s been a lot of fun. You learn to sit back and enjoy the work you’ve done,” Niemuth said. “But when in the midst, you will continue to focus on day-to-day stuff.”

Coach Niemuth touched on why it’s important for the upperclassmen to lead the team in a professional matter. With the guidance of four to five seniors taking charge, team expectations are easily reached with no conflicts.

“The work ethic is the big thing,” Niemuth said. “We have senior leadership that’s put the exceeding amount of work in, whether that’s putting up shots before attending class or other activities. 

Positive role models were evident throughout Simpson’s season. With players such as Jenna Taylor and Cameron Kincaid reaching season milestones, Coach Niemuth brought up how the team environment’s great worth ethic has been an inspiration to younger players on the team. 

Maggie Hall, a young player who was influenced by the team’s atmosphere, talked about how Taylor and Kincaid have been a motivation to her while finishing up her sophomore season. 

“They both have been really influential to me since I’ve got here,” Hall said. “Especially through all their success, they’ve had the two years I’ve been here. They’re always supportive when I need someone or always down to get a workout in.”

“They make themselves better athletes which the young players have noticed. It’s that extra step our players have taken in the offseason to pay off for this year,” Niemuth said.