In a battle of nationally-ranked softball teams jockeying for position atop the Iowa Conference standings, it was Luther College that was able to take advantage of scoring opportunities, as the No. 11 Norse handed No. 3 Central College their first conference losses of the season; 9-5 and 1-0 on Saturday.
Luther put up four unearned runs in the fourth inning to start the scoring and led 9-2 in the bottom of the seventh inning before Central’s rally ran out of fuel at three runs. The Dutch were hurt by stranding 11 base runners throughout the game.
Things were much the same in game two, as Central came up with only four hits and left six runners stranded. Starting pitcher Kiley Lythberg took both losses and drops to 14-4 this season.
Central and Luther are now tied at the top of the Iowa Conference softball standings with 10-2 records. The Dutch are now 29-5 overall and will wrap of league play on the road, starting with Cornell on Wednesday in Mount Vernon.