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Cougars finally put away Pacific 8-7 in 12 innings

By Daily Herald - | May 13, 2022

Courtesy BYU Photo

BYU's Jacob Rogers (left) celebrates with teammates after getting the game-winning hit in a 12 inning, 8-7 victory against Pacific on Thursday, May 12, 2022.

PROVO, Utah — As Thursday night faded into Friday morning at Miller Park, junior Jacob Rogers’ walk-off RBI single in the bottom the 12th inning gave BYU baseball an 8-7 win in game one against Pacific.

“I feel like we didn’t play very sharp tonight, but to come away with a win was awesome,” said interim head coach Trent Pratt. “That’s what this team has done, we keep fighting and eventually someone makes a play or gets a big hit. I’m just proud of the way they battle.”

The Cougars (29-18, 12-10 WCC) took an early 3-0 lead after scoring three runs in the bottom of the first inning. Ozzie Pratt led off with a single and Brock Watkins beat out an infield single to move Pratt around to third. Mitch McIntyre reached on an error, scoring Pratt, while both Watkins and McIntyre advanced on the throwing error. Cole Gambill’s infield single then scored McIntyre, and BYU went ahead 3-0.

A leadoff home run ignited Pacific (14-32, 5-17 WCC) in the third. Following the solo bomb, the Tigers reached on a walk, single, double and an error to score four runs in the inning to take a one-run lead.

Pacific added another run in the fourth inning on a walk, single, passed ball and ground out to go ahead 5-3.

Josh Cowden reached on an error to lead off the fifth and later advanced to second base. A Pratt groundout then moved Cowden to third, and a Watkins’ single to left brought him home. McIntyre then launched a double down the right-field line that scored Watkins, tying the game at 5-5.

Colin Reuter opened the seventh inning with a walk, and stole second during Pratt’s at-bat, who was then hit by a pitch. Watkins singled into right to load the bases before a McIntyre sacrifice fly brought home Reuter to put BYU back in front, 6-5. The Cougars loaded the bases once more in the inning, but two strikeouts ended the threat.

Nate Dahle came in to pitch the eighth, where the Tigers threatened with a runner on third and two outs, but the Cougars got a groundout to end the inning.

Two Pacific singles off of closer Reid McLauglin sandwiched by a double in the top of the ninth, gave the Tigers the lead back, a 7-6 advantage heading into the bottom of the inning.

The Cougars got the tying run on base with a leadoff single by Pratt in the bottom the ninth that he turned into two bases on an error by the left fielder. Following a groundout and a strikeout, Ryan Sepede came up to bat and faced a full count when he laced a ball into left center, scoring Pratt from second base to tie the game at 7-all.

After both teams were retired in order in the 10th inning, Pacific got a runner on in the 11th and the 12th, but Cooper McKeehan recorded four strikeouts and a groundout between the two innings to give the Cougars a chance to win in their half of the 12th.

McIntyre and Dawsen Hall each drew walks to put runners on first and second, bringing up Austin Deming with two-on and just one out. The junior third baseman sent a rocket to left center that just missed leaving the park but was caught at the wall. Rogers then came on as a pinch hitter with two outs and grounded up the middle into center field, scoring McIntyre with the game-winning run.

“I felt real calm and collected at the plate, like I was in the backyard hitting batting practice with my dad.” Rogers said. “I’ve been dreaming about that moment since I was a kid. It was one of the great feelings in the world.”

The Cougars and Tigers will face off in game two of the three-game WCC series on Friday, May 13, with first pitch scheduled for 6 p.m. MDT. The game will be broadcast on the BYUtv app and on The BYU Radio Network–107.9 FM, BYU Radio App, BYUCougars.com and the BYU Cougars app.


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