By Evelyn Burns
The BYU softball team makes its way to Santa Barbara, Calif. today to participate in its third tournament of the season.
The softball team will play against five competitive teams this weekend in the Beach Invitational Tournament. The first opponent is UC Santa Barbara, Thursday, Feb. 20, at 2:00 pm.
The Cougars lead the Mountain West Conference with a 5-3 record. The team just returned from another tournament in College Station, Texas last weekend, where it posted a big win over No. 24 Texas A&M.
It is unclear whether sophomore All-American Oli Keohohou will be participating only as a designated player, or whether she can return to full play this tournament. A stray pitch at the St. George tournament injured Keohohou”s elbow in January.
The team will again be looking to the bats of senior Brooke Cadiente and freshmen Neta Lei and Ashlyn Russell.
The Cougars take on the UC Santa Barbara Gauchos today in hope of another win. The Gauchos will probably prove to be the team”s toughest competition this weekend with an 11-3 record this season.
UC Santa Barbara”s pitching duo, senior Loren Thornburg and freshman Carly Harmon, pitched a combined 0.49 ERA in their last tournament.
On Friday the Cougars will take on San Diego State and Cal St. Northridge.
The Cougars will meet San Diego State for the first time this season at 9:00 am. The Aztecs are just behind the Cougars in the conference, with a 6-4 record this season so far.
The Cougars will again be facing tough pitching against Aztec sophomore pitcher Bre DeSanta, who was named the MWC Pitcher of the week. The Aztecs won in a major upset over No. 4 Michigan this past weekend in the Campbell/Cartier Classic.
The Cougars play next against the Cal St. Northridge Matadors at 1:30 pm. The Matadors have a 6-5 record this season. They also played in the Campbell/Cartier Classic this weekend, winning three and losing two.
On Saturday, the Cougars compete against Kansas and Cal-Poly. BYU faced Cal-Poly in the Thunderbird Classic in January.
The Kansas University Jayhawks boast a 7-1 record this season. The Jayhawks recently trashed the Matadors in the Campbell/Cartier Classic 4-0. The Cougars will play the Jayhawks at 1:30 pm on Saturday.
The Cougar softball team will finally face off against Cal Poly once again at 6:00 pm on Saturday. They have an 8-9 record this season. In the last meeting between the Cougars and the Mustangs, the Cougars dropped, going 6-7.