BYU dominates in home baseball opener

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    By JILLIAN WILLIAMS

    They may have been few in number but 105 brave fans headed to Miller Park Thursday afternoon to witness BYU?s 17-2 victory over the Northern Colorado Bears.

    The temperature hovered above 30 degrees while the Cougars gave a display of their offensive talent, totaling 21 hits for the afternoon.

    Jake Wortham, winning pitcher, gave a commanding performance against the Bears, throwing 82 pitches in six innings, giving up one earned run.

    The day began with a question as to whether or not the field would be playable. The hard work of BYU groundskeeper Brian Hill and his crew members allowed the teams to play during the afternoon. The game was moved back from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. because of the weather.

    ?I showed up and two inches of snow covered the field,? coach Vance Law said.

    Law arrived at the field at 8:15 a.m. and watched the grounds crew clear the field with two tractors, scraping off just enough snow to allow the sun to melt the remainder.

    The weather did not seem to affect the Cougars. Leon Johnson led off the game with a hard hit to right field, and the Cougars were unstoppable afterward, scoring in every inning.

    ?Our confidence is starting to build,? Law said. ?I was really pleased with the entire team today.?

    Johnson hit a two-run bomb in the fourth, upping the Cougar lead to 7-1. Mike McKeever also hit a two-run homer, in the sixth inning.

    The game also marked an end to Kent Walton?s 16-game hitting streak. McKeever now leads the team with a four-game hitting streak.

    Wortham was relieved in the seventh inning by Brad Kidd, who gave up a run in the eighth.

    Anthony Garcia, one of the two Bears who crossed the plate, was injured in the bottom of the sixth when a high fly ball to center brought three UNC players colliding into one another.

    BYU has won its past three games, bringing their record to 6-3, which is Law?s best starting record at BYU.

    The Cougars play UNC again Saturday at 1 p.m.

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