OTTUMWA – It's not often that a 1-3 weekend will leave Indian Hills head softball coach Jim Overturf feeling positive.
Considering the level of competition, and considering the position the Warriors were in after the first three games, one win was enough for Overturf to feel good about.
After finally getting their first look at the top team in their own region on Saturday, Indian Hills returned home to face another team with high hopes for a deep run in May. The Warriors avoided being swept by two rated opponents in less than 24 hours Sunday, salvaging a split with No. 11 (DII) Illinois Central (17-13) as IHCC answered a 3-0 shutout loss in game one with a 2-0 shutout win in the second game at Romalynn "R.L." Hellyer Field.
"Frankly, I'm thrilled with it," Overturf said. "It's a good win that we got going into this last week. We played well all weekend. We kept ourselves in all four games. We're doing some things well. We just have to feel how to win when we do those things."
The well-paced doubleheader came in the wake of the Warriors' first two games of the season against 14th-ranked Iowa Western, the runaway leader in Region XI. The Reivers, who have ended each of the last two IHCC softball seasons in the finals of the regional tournament, maintained a perfect regular season regional record with wins of 6-0 and 8-5 at Council Bluffs over the Warriors.
"We outhit (Iowa Western). That was probably the most disappointing thing about those games," Overturf said. "We did so well offensively, which is something we haven't done so well, and yet we gave up six runs and eight runs. We also couldn't seem to put hits together, which is a challenge and a difficult thing for any team to do."