Columbia College softball team splits doubleheader with Missouri Baptist

Monday, April 20, 2009 | 9:46 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Runs were scarce for the Columbia College softball team Monday in its doubleheader against Missouri Baptist University.

The Cougars won 2-0 in the first game, but dropped the second game 2-1, bringing their record 10-2 in conference play and 24-9 overall.

Sophomore Kacey Rehagen threw a two-hit shutout in the first game to improve her record to 4-3. After the injury to Valerie Teter earlier this month, Rehagen has become the Cougar’s most reliable pitcher.

“We all miss Val, but accidents happen,” Rehagen said. “We have to pull through. We have to work even harder. We do it for us and we do it for coach.”

Rehagen said the team must have more energy when its playing conference games. She felt the energy was there, but the team just wasn’t able to score the runs it needed, she added.

“We had great defense,” Rehagen said. “We didn’t have any errors. Everything on the ground, in the air, we got it. We didn’t get the bat on the ball as much. We had an off day with the bats I guess.”

Junior third baseman Jena Strobel displayed the energy that Rehagen talked about. Strobel, who was hit by two pitches on the day, was the loudest Cougar on the bench and in the field.

“I try to be loud to pick the team up,” Strobel said. “Games like this where it’s close, it’s easy for us to fall apart. We have to keep it together and cheering helps.”

Rehagen was helped out on offense with a home run from junior outfielder Krista Vlasak and an RBI single by sophomore outfielder Ashley Brawner.

Junior Meghan Bailey pitched the second game, but the Cougars' only run came on a bases-loaded single by sophomore outfielder Crystal Chaplin to bring in Strobel. The Cougars had more base runners in the second game, but the Spartans' pitchers managed to pitching their way out of jams. The loss drops Bailey’s record to 4-4.

“It’s kind of frustrating because it’s conference and we’re in it to win it,” Strobel said. “We’ve got to be better. We’re usually pretty good at pulling out the hits.”

With the loss, the Cougars are now tied with Williams Baptist College for first in the American Midwest Conference. The Cougars play Williams Baptist in a doubleheader at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Columbia College with a chance for sole possession of first in the conference.

Coach Wendy Spratt said her team will work mostly on offensive during their practice on Tuesday and believes her team will have better run production on Wednesday.

“Our goal is eight runs in five innings and that didn’t happen today,” Spratt said. “We had a lot of runners in the second game, but we weren’t able to finish it. We’ve been hitting all year. I have confidence they’re going to come out Wednesday and hit the ball like they have been all year.”

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