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Tiger softball playing through adverse weather conditions

The Dakota Wesleyan University softball team has turned a negative into a positive.

Due to the wintry weather conditions, the Tigers have yet to play a home game this season. But instead of making excuses, they have adapted and played through it.

"They've done a very good job of staying positive through it all and we've played some really good ball at this time," DWU softball coach Ed Kieff said. "We are doing all the little things right. It really hasn't seemed to affect them that much."

Kieff added the Tigers have viewed the unfavorable schedule has a challenge and they've recently answered it.

"We know what we have to do and they get out there and they do it and it's been a lot of fun actually," Kieff said. "It's been a challenge and they are always good for a challenge. We haven't looked at it as a negative as much as it just gives us a little bit of energy to do even better."

After opening the season in Aberdeen, the Tigers played in Tucson, Arizona, in March. DWU has since played in Nebraska and Iowa, with its closest home contest in Yankton against Mount Marty.

"You can look at either way, good or bad, but it's been good for us because it has brought the team closer together and everybody pulls for each other even more," Kieff said. "I know that the adversity of not having any home games has turned into really a positive in that sense."

After going through a seven-game losing skid in March, the Tigers recently pieced together a three-game winning streak and have went 5-5 in April.

Kieff credits the Tigers all-around play for the recent run of victories.

"They have been doing all the little stuff right and our pitching has been exceptional," Kieff said. "Our defense has been phenomenal. We played better defense the last few games than we have in quite a while. The hitting has stepped up. We've managed to do just about everything that we always work on extremely well."

The Tigers had their three-game winning streak snapped on Sunday in a pair of losses against Midland University. Prior to the losses, DWU was in fourth place in the Great Plains Athletic Conference standings.

The Tigers are scheduled to host Hastings College and Dordt College on Wednesday and Thursday, weather permitting. It would be the only home games for DWU this season.

"We've handled all that adversity very well," Kieff said. "It's getting down to crunch time here and I think they have been very focused."

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