Columbia College loses first game of NAIA Tournament, must win Tuesday

Monday, May 12, 2014 | 7:24 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — It took five innings for Central Methodist University to beat Columbia College's women's softball team 12-2 on Monday in the opening game of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Tournament, which was played on the Cougars' home field.

"We have to keep winning to to stay alive," Columbia junior Tiffany Urwiler said. "If we lose, we are done."

Columbia jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Third baseman Marli Hayes' double knocked in outfielder Carly Spalding. Hayes came around to score on a throwing error by the Eagles.

The Cougars were held to four hits on the afternoon.

From then on, the Eagles poured it on — including a five-run fourth inning.

Aubrey Utley started the game for the Eagles and pitched a complete game.

The Cougars utilized five pitchers. Starting pitcher Taylor Richter took the loss after giving up three runs in 1.1 innings.

But the Cougars say they aren't discouraged; they're just urgent.

"Makes us play harder to prove that we deserve to be here," Urwiler said. "There's no doubt in our minds we can do it. We just have to play our game."

The Cougars will play an elimination game against No. 4-seeded Morningside (Iowa) College on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m.

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