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BYU Roundup: Baseball pounds out 18 hits in 20-4 win at Cal Davis

By Daily Herald - | Feb 23, 2024

Courtesy BYU Photo

BYU's Luke Anderson runs the bases in a baseball game during the 2023 season.

DAVIS, Calif. — BYU baseball scored 20 runs on 18 hits, including nine extra base hits, in a 20-4 win over UC Davis on Thursday at Dobbins Stadium.

With the victory, the Cougars improved to 2-3 on the year and increased their all-time series record with the Aggies to 4-1. The loss drops UC Davis to 2-2 on the season.

“We did a better job of swinging at strikes today,” BYU head coach Trent Pratt said. “We got behind early, but it was good for us to fall behind and battle back, get some big hits and win a game from behind.”

BYU got on board first with two runs on two walks, followed by back-to-back singles by Collin Reuter and Cooper Vest for a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning.

UC Davis tied the game with two runs in the top half of the first, then took a 4-2 lead with a run in both the second and third innings.

The Cougars broke the game wide open in the fourth inning with 13 runs on nine hits, including a two-run home run by Easton Jones and a three-run blast by Crew Robinson. BYU sent 17 hitters to the plate, including Robinson who tripled and homered. Jones also had two hits to help the Cougars to a 15-4 advantage in a half inning that lasted 40 minutes.

“It was a good win for us,” said Robinson. “The past few games we’ve been hitting balls hard but right at guys, so it felt good to see balls fall in gaps today.”

BYU tacked on two more runs in the top of the eighth. Ryker Schow singled to left with bases loaded to score Bryker Hurdsman, then Chipper Beck drove in Keoni Painter with a sacrifice flyball to left field, for a 17-4 lead.

The Cougars scored three more in the ninth on a double to right field by Painter that scored a run and two runs batted in by Schow for a final score of 20-4.

Starting right hander Ben Hansen (2-0) went six innings for the win, striking out six while giving up just one earned run. The Cougars’ bullpen of Hayden Coon, Maddax Peck and Justis Reiser combined for three scoreless innings to close out the game. The four BYU hurlers surrendered just five hits over nine innings.

Game two of the three-game series at UC Davis is scheduled for Friday at 3 p.m. MST and will be broadcast live on BYU Radio 107.9 and the BYU Radio App, with Dave McCann on the call. The game will also be broadcast on ESPN+.

Zavodnik drives in five runs as softball routs Bethune-Cookman

CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. — BYU softball tallied 18 runs on 20 hits as it beat Bethune-Cookman, 18-5 in its Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic opener at Yankee Field on Thursday afternoon.

A six-run second inning that featured a Violet Zavodnik grand slam helped the Cougars (9-2, 0-0 Big 12) pull away early, and a nine-run fifth all but sealed the deal.

BYU scored first in the top of the first inning with Ailana Agbayani leading off with a four-pitch walk and Maddie Bejarano doubling to center for an early 1-0 lead.

Plating six in the second inning, Keila Kamoku and Hailey Morrow both reached base before Taryn Lennon singled through the right side to make it 3-0. Ailana Agbayani and Bejarano joined Lennon on the base paths, and Zavodnik took a 2-0 pitch just over the fence in right center for a grand slam and 7-0 lead.

Kamoku led off the top the the third with a single to third, and her pinch runner, Tristen Turlington, came in to score on a Maddie Udall double. Jaelynn Lambert, pinch running for Udall, moved to third on a Lennon single and score on an Ailana Agbayani single, giving the Cougars a 9-0 advantage.

Pouring it on in the fourth, BYU sent 15 batters to the plate as it doubled its lead to 18-0, scoring nine more runs on nine hits, including a two-run homer by Huntyr Ava.

Bethune-Cookman plated one in the bottom of the fourth and four in the fifth to cut into the lead, but two strikeouts and a line out to Breezy Hayward at third base shut the door on the Wildcats for a run-rule win.

The Cougars will play the second game of their Mary Nutter-opening doubleheader on Friday, Feb. 22 against UC Riverside. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. PST.

Three women’s volleyball players chosen for USA program

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Outside hitters Claire Little and Erin Livingston and opposite hitter/middle blocker Kate Prior will represent BYU at 2024 USA Volleyball Women’s National Team (WNT) Open Program this week.

BYU head coach Heather Olmstead will also make the trip to Colorado Springs, this year as an evaluator, where she will help U.S. head coach Karch Kiraly and his staff decide which athletes should be considered for USA teams.

Used for consideration to both the U.S. Women’s National Team and U.S. Women’s Collegiate National Team, the WNT Open Program will be held Feb. 23-25 at the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Training Center in Colorado.

Per USA Volleyball, “The WNT Open Program is used for consideration for selection to both the U.S. Women’s National Team and the U.S. Women’s Collegiate National Team. In 2024, members of the U.S. Women’s National Team will compete in the following events: Volleyball Nations League, NORCECA Final Six, Pan American Cup and the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Athletes born in 2005 or younger may also be in consideration for selection to the U.S. U21 Women’s National Team that will compete in the 2024 U21 Women’s NORCECA Continental Championship.”

Fans can follow the WNT Open Program with a subscription to BallerTV. View a full list of the participating athletes and staff members at the USA Volleyball website.

Men’s tennis tops Weber State

OGDEN, Utah – Strong singles play helped secure a 5-2 victory for BYU men’s tennis over Weber State at the Ogden Athletic Club Thursday afternoon.

After losing the doubles point, the Cougars came storming back for wins in straight sets for four of the six singles matches.

“We came out a little slow in doubles to lose the point, but to Weber State’s credit, they played some very good doubles,” said BYU assistant coach Jonathan Sanchez. “I’m really happy with how we rebounded after losing the doubles point going into singles. We picked the energy up and stayed positive on all the courts to really take care of business in singles.”

BYU (7-3) is now winners of six straight matches, the longest streak since a seven-game run from March 26-April 17, 2021.


Doubles play went quick, with Wally Thayne and Zach Fuchs facing an early 3-1 deficit. Despite 40-30 lead for the duo in the fifth game, the Wildcats held serve to eventually win 6-1. TJ Wells and Tygen Goldammer then fell 6-3 as Jack Barnett and Redd Owen’s match went unfinished facing a 5-3 deficit.

Owen led the way on court four, recording break after break to secure a dominant 6-0 first set win. He continued the momentum, earning a 6-2 second set victory to even the dual match score at 1-1.

Goldammer claimed the next point for the Cougars. After coming out of a first set battle on top at 7-5, the freshman from Tuscaloosa, Alabama took a commanding 3-1 second set lead off a long game point. Goldammer forced his opponent to the right several times before approaching the net for a putaway on the opposite side. He went on to win 6-1.

Fuchs then notched a 6-3, 6-4 win over Connor Kruger at No. 3 singles. With the first set at 3-2 for Fuchs, the junior got a break after a baseline rally ended as Kruger directed the ball to his right before it crashed into the net. Fuchs held serve the rest of the set. During set two, he got an early break and then remained in control the rest of the way to win 6-4.

Next, Jack Barnett seized yet another victory in straight sets at No. 1 singles. Despite a 1-2 first set deficit, the senior went on to win five straight games. The next set proved much closer, as Weber State’s Elyes Marouani stole a break in the first game. Later, Barnett got a break back and things stayed close until the deciding tiebreaker. Barnett overpowered Marouani, imposing his will on consistent baseline rallies and strong net play to take the 7-2 tiebreaker win.

On Court 2, Thayne dropped the first set 6-2. The junior responded, however, by piecing together a solid 6-3 performance in the second set. Near the beginning of the first set, Wildcat Tristan Sarap suffered a foot injury. Playing a bit more, Thayne went up 2-0 before Sarap ultimately retired. With the victory, Thayne has now won eight singles matches in a row for an 8-1 overall record.

David Duong finished last on court six, falling in a three-set match. The freshman won the first set 6-4 before dropping the second 6-1. Although trailing 3-1 in the final set, Duong got a break. Down 4-5, he tied things up by holding serve before ultimately dropping the third set 7-5.

BYU will take on No. 72 Idaho State at home on Saturday at noon. Cheer on the Cougars at the Indoor Tennis Courts or follow along via live scoring or the live stream.


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