The BYU softball team competed this weekend in the Easton Desert Classic in Las Vegas. The Cougars beat both Hawai’i and Cal State Fullerton but lost to Oregon State, Louisiana Monroe and Portland State.
The Cougars took the field on Thursday against No. 20 Hawai’i and finished with a 4-2 upset victory. Offensively, BYU had seven hits, with four from outfielder Lacey Millet who went 3-4 on the night followed by a single apiece form JC Clayton, Katie Manuma, Carly Duckworth and Madisen Robb. Millett said she was able to keep the Hawai’i defense off balance using a combination of her different hits.
“In practice I work on my bunt, something that bounces a lot and something I can hit hard,” Millet said. “I was able to utilize what I learn at practice and get on base more.”
BYU recorded their first two double-plays of the season and were led defensively by pitcher Tori Almond who added seven more strikeouts and another win to her season total.
BYU lost to Oregon State 7-3 and to Louisiana Monroe by a score of 6-5 in day two of the tournament.
BYU had the lead against Oregon State as they went into the seventh inning. The Beavers rallied for six runs in their last up-to-bat with three runs earned off a home run. In the bottom of the sixth, Manuma hit deep center for two runs and her second home run of the season.
Robb hit a three-run bomb against LM followed by teammates Alexandra Hudson Shamo and Clayton who each had two hits. Similarly to OSU, Louisiana Monroe rallied in the seventh with a homer, a forced error and a walk-off for the win.
Day three ended in a 4-3 win against Cal State Fullerton and a 5-3 loss to Portland State. Howell threw four innings for her first win of the season against CSF and allowed them only one run.
“As a senior I have to step it up and be a leader for the pitching staff,” Howell said. “It’s a work in progress but we’ll get better. We’re still getting used to playing together.”
Ashlee Brawley Robinson highlighted the BYU offense with two hits, one run and a hit that brought in the game-winning run. Their defense was then able to keep CSF scoreless and hold on for their second victory of the tournament.
Portland State had three home runs and six hits to earn their win. Coryn Tauali’i was hit in the helmet with a throw from the mound that rolled all the way to the right field fence and allowed her to score. Tauali’i had a hit for the team followed by Clayton, Manuma, Shamo, Marissa Bravo and Jenna Goar.
Defensively, Shamo showed her arm when she threw a runner out at second who tried to take an extra base off of a single. Pitchers Howell and Almond each had two strikeouts on the night.
The softball team heads to the Mary Nutter Classic in Cathedral City, Calif. next weekend.