STOCKTON, Calif. — No. 1 seed BYU baseball couldn’t solve the West Coast Conference Pitcher of the Year, falling 4-1 to No. 4 LMU in the Cougars’ first game of the WCC Tournament on Thursday at Banner Island Ballpark.
With the loss, the Cougars will play the loser of the Gonzaga and Saint Mary’s game at noon PT on Friday in an elimination game. Should BYU win that game, they will play again at 7:30 p.m. PT Friday.
Senior pitcher Jordan Wood pitched three sterling innings to start the ballgame before a hit batter and a home run by LMU (30-23) put BYU (36-16) behind, 2-0.
A double by freshman Austin Deming was the only hit through five innings for the Cougars against Lions pitcher Codie Paiva, voted the pitcher of the year by the conference’s coaches earlier this week. Paiva struck out a career-high 11 Cougars with one walk on the day.
BYU got a lead-off single by Danny Gelalich in the sixth and a double with one out in the seventh by Mitch McIntyre but couldn’t score. The Lions tacked on two runs in the top of the seventh on a pair of RBI-singles for some insurance to go up 4-0.
The Cougars scored a run in the bottom of the ninth on McIntyre’s second double of the day, but the lone run was all BYU could manage.