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Bryan Petersen named Coach of the Year

By Keith Norem
On March 24, 2016

Coach Petersen cuts down the net after Kirkwood's victory

Kirkwood Community College Head Men’s Basketball Coach Bryan Petersen was named the National Coach of the Year after winning the national championship game on March 19.     

Petersen coached the Eagles through a final four game where they were behind by 24 at the half and came back to win by 11, making it the biggest come back on that stage in over 30 years.

In the final game Petersen led the team against number one ranked Triton Community College who had only two losses all year and rolled their way to the finals bludgeoning everyone in their path.

Petersen didn’t seem to blink as his team burst out of the gate and went toe to toe with Triton ending the half leading by one point. The second half he had a plan that allowed the Eagles to move ahead by double digits and had Triton scrambling and looking discouraged. 

The final score was 83 – 76 and the Eagles were named the 2016 Div. II National Champions. 

The Eagles had three members of the team placed on the all-tournament team and Petersen was named the National Coach of the Year.  

In reaction to the award, Petersen said, “It was great but I could not get over the fact that we won the national championship.”  

He added, “This award is due to the fact the players really bought into the system that we set up for them.”

“I have learned from some great coaches in both Greg McDermott and Fred Hoiberg,” said Petersen. “I have taken what I learned from them and added my own instinct and brand to that.”

McDermott now coaches the Creighton University basketball team and Hoiberg recently left Iowa State University to coach the Chicago Bulls. 

This is the second time in college history the Kirkwood men’s basketball team has won the national championship. The previous championship was earned in 2008.

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