The Iowa Conference coaches unanimously picked the Luther College softball team to repeat as league champions. The Norse who went undefeated en route to the 2015 title, picked up all seven first-place votes (coaches can not vote for their own team).
Head Coach Renae Hartl, who is in the midst of her 15th season, returns 11 letter winners from last year's squad that posted an overall record of 38-6. Hartl has led her teams to four Iowa Conference titles (2007, 2011, 2012, 2015), eight NCAA III Regional appearances, that includes the last seven years in a row, and four National Championships appearances finishing fifth in 2010, 2012 and 2013 and seventh in 2011. She enters the year with a career record of 433-161 that ranks 16th in the NCAA III for winningest active coaches.
Eight games into the 2016 campaign, the Norse are ranked No. 9 in the NCAA III and have posted a record of 7-1. If the Norse get to 23 wins this season, they will record the 1,000th win in school history. Luther softball started in 1969 and in the past 47 seasons the teams have posted an overall record of 977-504-1.
The 2016 Iowa Conference Tournament will be held May 6-7 at the tournament's top seed hosting. For the second year in a row, the tournament will be a single elimination affair. The top two seeds from the regular season standings will receive first round byes. The two opening round games are played on Friday with semfinals and finals played on Saturday.