The Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) softball team defeated Iowa Central Community College (ICCC) twice on May 2 to win the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region XI-B championship and advance to the NJCAA District G Softball Tournament.
The Bears defeated ICCC 4-0 in a championship bracket game and then handed the Tritons a 10-1 loss after ICCC defeated North Iowa Area Community College (NIACC) in an elimination game. All games were played at the DMACC softball diamond.
Sophomore Kenzie Ihle of Polk City tossed a four-hitter and struck out seven to lead the Bears in their first win against ICCC. Freshman Mackenzie Jones of West Des Moines, sophomore Brittney Roby of Knoxville and freshman Claire Dudek of Urbandale had two hits and one RBI apiece in the win. Sophomore Sydney Weldon of Albia also drove in a run for DMACC. Ihle improved to 26-1 with the win.
The Bears took a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the second behind a run-scoring double from Roby and RBI singles by Dudek and Weldon. Jones added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth when she led off the inning with a home run.
Freshman Kenzie Sutton of Adel and Weldon each homered and drove in four and three runs respectively to lead the Bears in their second win over the Tritons. Weldon had three hits in the win and Sutton and freshman Megan Rushing of West Des Moines came away with two hits apiece. Dudek, Jones and sophomore Katie Bell of Bixby, Okla., each drove in a run for DMACC.
Weldon’s two-run homer gave DMACC a 2-0 lead in the first inning and Dudek’s double and an RBI single by Weldon pushed the Bears’ advantage to 4-0 after two innings. Bell’s run-scoring gave DMACC a 5-0 lead after three innings and Sutton’s two-run double and an RBI single by Jones gave the Bears an 8-1 lead after four innings. Sutton’s two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth ended the game with the Bears winning by the mercy rule.
Ihle also threw the second game and got her 27th win of the season. She allowed six hits, struck out nine and walked two.
As NJCAA Region XI-B champions, DMACC will face Southeast (Neb.) Community College (SECC) in the NJCAA District G tournament May 7 and 8 at Beatrice, Neb. The District G champion will advance to the NJCAA Division II Softball Championship May 18 o 21 at Clinton, Miss. The Bears take a 48-6 record and a nine-game winning streak into district play.