Defending state champion Indianola wasn't about to be dethroned Tuesday.
The No. 5 Indians (33-9 overall) prevailed over seventh-ranked Winterset by a 4-2 count in a Class 4A quarterfinal at Rogers Park.
Sophomore McKenzie Ellis (18-4) went the distance in the circle for Indianola, allowing only two hits and one earned run. She walked three and fanned three.
Ellis actually took a no-hitter into the sixth, before the Huskies finally broke through with two runs.
"I thought McKenzie did a great job against a very strong Winterset team," IHS head coach Stacy Evans said. "We have a to-do list with our ballclub, and one of those things is to get Game 1 (at state)?under our belt, which we were able to do."
In a rematch of last year's title contest, No. 2 Dallas Center-Grimes (36-5) will be the next opponent for the Indians in a 4A semifinal Thursday at 5 p.m. on Diamond 1. The Fillies blanked Denison-Schleswig on Tuesday in a 7-0 decision behind the 48th no-hitter in state tournament history from University of Missouri recruit Paige Lowary.
INDIANOLA 4, WINTERSET 2
Winterset 000 002 0-2 2 1
Indianola 000 130 x-4 11 1
Karly Olson (L, 30-9; 6 IP, 11 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 7 K) and Karly McDonald; McKenzie Ellis (W, 18-4; 7 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 3 K) and Kirsten Burris.
2B-I: Madi Parrott, Brianna Chaplin, Taylor Barnett, Cassie Burris. SB-I: Ally Orwig. MH-I: Parrott (2), Chaplin (2), K. Burris (2), C. Burris (2). RBI-W: Savannah Marker (2); I: Chaplin, Barnett, Libby Yenger, C. Burris. LOB-W 4; I 9.
Madi Parrott, Brianna Chaplin, Kirsten Burris and Cassie Burris all contributed a pair of hits for the Indians. After plating a single tally in the fourth, Indianola added three more insurance scores in its next at-bat.
"We never quit and always play with lots of energy," said IHS senior leadoff batter Ally Orwig. "We want to get back to the championship and defend our title, but we have to win first (Thursday) to do that."
Macy Johnson and Savannah Marker each managed singles for the Huskies (33-9), who are making their seventh all-time state appearance and fifth in the last six years.
Marker also drove in a pair.
Winterset will now play Denison-Schleswig (26-13) in the 4A consolation bracket Wednesday at noon on Diamond 1.