Cougars Advance to AMC Semifinals Behind Crisp's Three Hit Shutout
COLUMBIA -- It took three games, but the Columbia College Cougar softball team was able to earn their spot in the American Midwest Conference semifinals starting next week.
After splitting a doubleheader Friday, the Cougars rebounded to take a commanding victory over fifth-seeded Missouri Baptist University Saturday, winning 8-0 in six innings. The win moves the Cougars to 26-17 on the season.
After sitting on the sidelines with injuries for the past several games, Tori Gehlert got the Cougars off on the right foot in the bottom of the first, crushing a double to right field. Columbia would load the bases and score their first run when Spartan pitcher Jena Trombley walked Morgan Bounds. After a flyout to centerfield, Kristin Eiken singled to score Meagan Thurman. Jessica Hardy brought the third run across the plate for Columbia on a sacrifice fly to center.
The bats were silent until the fourth inning when the Cougars added two more runs off of three hits. The Cougars were anxious to get the game over with before the rain started falling and took care of the Spartans in the sixth inning, scoring three runs including a walk-off two-run double by Eiken.
Jordan Crisp (16-8) threw a six-inning gem for the Cougars, allowing just three hits and five walks while fanning two. Columbia pounded 15 hits in the ballgame, including three each by Gehlert and Thurman. Bounds, Whitni Howell, Eiken and Karina Veit each chipped in two hits.
The fourth-seeded Cougars will face top seeded Williams Baptist College on Tuesday, May 1 in the semifinal round in Walnut Ridge, Ark. The semifinals are a best-of-three series starting at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday. The teams will play a doubleheader on the first day and the deciding game, if necessary, on Wednesday at 2 p.m.