COLUMBIA — Columbia College softball split a doubleheader with Benedictine University on Friday afternoon in the quarterfinal of the American Midwest Conference Postseason Tournament.
The Cougars suffered a 6-3 defeat in the first game of the day before bouncing back to win the second game 14-1. The Cougars, the No. 2 seed in the tournament, moved to 27-14 on the year with the split.
In Game 1, Jamie Holmes got Columbia off to a quick start with a lead-off double and scored on a passed ball for a 1-0 lead. The Bulldogs responded with three runs in the top of the second on two hits and a misplayed bunt.
Columbia's Paxton Welch was the losing pitcher and allowed six runs (one earned) on five hits in 4.1 innings. The Cougar offense was led by Marli Hayes, going 3 for 4. Holmes and Carly Spalding also had two hits each.
Columbia bounced back quickly in Game 2, scoring four runs in the top of the first inning and 10 runs over the next four innings. They would never relinquish their 14-0 lead. Starting pitcher Taylor Richter allowed one run over the final two innings to pick up the complete game victory for the Cougars.
Richter struck out five batters and walked one in five innings to earn her third win of the year.
The two teams will be back in action at 1 p.m. Saturday at Antimi Black Field in Columbia for the rubber match of the series. A berth into next week's AMC Tournament Semifinals is on the line.