Led by the record-shattering performance of senior pitcher Aubrey Utley (Trenton, MO), the Central Methodist University softball team will participate in the NAIA National Tournament for the third straight season.
Utley has rolled through her senior season, with a 24-1 record and 1.33 ERA, with 131 strikeouts in 163 1/3 innings. She has 13 shutouts and 24 complete games.
The 41-6 Eagles will make the short trip to Columbia to play in the tournament opening four-team Columbia Bracket, with a matchup against Columbia College looming for Monday afternoon, May 12th, and 12 noon. CMU is a #2 seed, with CC seeded #3. Joining the two Missouri schools in the tournament will be the top-seeds from LSU Alexandria (Louisiana) and fourth-seeded Morningside (Iowa). LSU Alexandria is the second ranked team in the country.
The winner of the double-elimination Columbia Bracket will advance to the 34th annual NAIA Softball World Series in Columbus, Georgia from May 23rd through the 29th. Central Methodist earned an automatic berth into the national tournament by virtue of winning the Heart of America Conference regular season and tournament championships.