The Iowa Conference softball race begins this weekend and another close finish is expected. After a second place finish in 2005 Wartburg enters the conference race 19-3 and coach Kara Kehe’s team may have the best pitching combination in the conference.
Wartburg has a difficult start with a visit to defending league champ Coe on Saturday. Despite a second place finish last year Wartburg did not land a spot in the division three regionals. With more at-large bids available this season the league figures to advance more than just its champion.
Another factor is a conference tournament which will be held for the first time this season. Central coach George Wares says the tourney will help the fourth and fifth place teams, but won’t help the top two teams. Wares says it may hurt the third place team. The Dutch are 15-3 and figure to be a contender after a third place finish in 2005.
Wares says how quickly his team matures will determine whether or not they make a run at the league title. Central opens at home against Cornell on Saturday.