The Iowa softball team closes out its home schedule with a doubleheader against South Dakota State. The Hawkeyes are 36-18 overall and conclude the Big Ten regular season this weekend at Wisconsin. Iowa coach Gayle Blevins says it’s a tune up for the conference tournament and every time they step on the field it’s a chance to get ready for post season.

The winner of next week’s Big Ten tournament will get a automatic spot into the NCAA regionals but Blevins feels good about their at-large chances if they need them. Blevins says if they finish well this weekend and have a good tournament, that will strengthen their position.

Blevins says a tough pre-conference schedule is a benefit when the NCAA selections begin. She says they were able to deal with some things early and played some quality teams, and Blevins says that makes a big difference at the end of the season.