Columbia, Mo. - The Cougar Softball team split two games in the American Midwest Conference (AMC) Tournament on Saturday afternoon as they defeated Park (Mo.) University 5-4 before falling to William Woods (Mo.) University 4-3. With the split, Columbia moves to 22-17 overall on the year.
Columbia fell behind early in game one as the Pirates scored three runs in the first inning and another in the second against starter Taylor Richter to take a 4-0 lead. The Cougars then picked up a pair of runs in the top of the third to pull within 4-2. After a scoreless fourth inning, Jamie Holmes led off the fifth with a base hit and came around to score on a single to center by Marli Hayes. Taylor Atwood would follow with an RBI double to right to bring home Hayes and tie the score at 4-4. Holmes got things started once again for Columbia with a single to center to begin the seventh and would move up to second base after a sacrifice bunt by Kristin Eiken. Hayes came to the plate with one out and again delivered, lining a 1-1 pitch to left field to give the Cougars a 5-4 advantage heading into the bottom of the seventh. Freshman Tiffany Urwiler allowed two runners to reach base with one out, but retired the final two batters to close out the victory.
Urwiler relieved Richter in the second and allowed just two hits over the final six innings to earn her sixth win of the season. Holmes led the Columbia offense with three hits and three runs scored to go along with two hits and three RBI from Hayes.
In the second game of the day, the Cougars squared off against William Woods after the Owls defeated Williams Baptist (Ark.) College 2-1 in eight innings. Both teams picked up a run in the first as Atwood singled home Holmes to even the score at 1-1 after an inning of play. William Woods broke the tie with two runs in the top of the third and added another run in the fifth for a 4-1 lead. Columbia responded with a run in the bottom of the fifth on a two-out RBI single by Eiken that brought home Karina Veit. After holding the Owls in the sixth and seventh, Kaylee Brueggeman was hit by a pitch and Veit blooped a single to center to put runners on first and second with nobody out to start the seventh. Both runners moved up a base following a groundout by Holmes and Brueggeman would come home on a wild pitch to bring the Cougars within a run at 4-3. However, Columbia was unable to do any more as Veit was stranded on third to end the game.
Urwiler got the start in game two and took the loss after giving three runs on four hits in 2.2 innings in the circle. Sophomore Maria Imhoff took over in the third and allowed a run on just one hit over the final 4.1 innings. Veit finished a perfect 3 for 3 to lead Columbia, who finished the contest with six hits.
Page 2 of 2 - The Cougar Softball team fell to Park University 4-2 Sunday in the AMC Tournament. Columbia, the tournament’s number three seed, ended the season with an overall record of 22-18. The second-seeded Pirates advanced to Sunday’s championship game to take on No. 4 seed William Woods (Mo.) University.
The Cougars took an early lead as Jamie Holmes led off the contest with a single to left field and came around to score on a sacrifice fly by Whitni Howell. Park responded with two runs in the bottom of the frame on a home run by Jamie Tanno and led 2-1 after an inning of play. The Pirates held the lead until the fourth inning when Howell led off with a single to center and scored on a one-out base hit by Chelsie Crain, tying the score at 2-2. The tie score didn’t last long as Park pushed a run across in the bottom of the fourth to retake the lead, 3-2. The Pirates would add another run in the sixth inning and held off Columbia in the seventh to cap off the victory.
Freshman Tiffany Urwiler suffered the loss in the circle for the Cougars after allowing four runs on eight hits in 5.2 innings of work. Holmes finished with three hits and a run scored to lead the Columbia offense.
Following the championship contest where William Woods defeated Park 6-0 to win the tournament crown, an all-conference team was announced. Juniors Kristin Eiken and Whitni Howell were named to the 16-person honorable mention all-conference team while senior Chelsie Crain and juniors Marli Hayes and Jamie Holmes took home first team honors. Holmes also collected AMC Newcomer of the Year accolades.