TEMPE, Ariz. — BYU softball saw its NCAA Tournament run come to a close at Farrington Stadium on Saturday, falling to No. 21 Virginia Tech 11-3 by mercy rule in the Tempe Regional Final.
“We just struggled to feel the ball and make plays,” said BYU associate head coach Pete Meredith. “You’ve got to tip your hat to them. They’re a good team, they played hard and were the better team today.”
The Hokies took a 2-0 first inning lead, reaching base twice on errors and then getting two singles, one that scored a runner and another that scored due to an obstruction call. BYU coach Gordon Eakin argued the call and was ejected from the game.
Virginia Tech tacked on another run in the second, scoring after a leadoff double and an error on a bunt to go ahead 3-0. Four runs in the third, including a solo homer and two-run shot then made it 7-0.
BYU had runners on first and second with no outs in the fourth, but three consecutive strikeouts ended a possible Cougar rally.
Another solo home run in the fourth gave the Hokies an 8-0 lead before the Cougars bats got going in the fifth. Erin Miklus singled and Violet Zavodnik doubled to put two Cougars in scoring position with two outs. Huntyr Ava delivered a three-run blast over the left field fence and it was 8-3, Hokies.
Virginia Tech took all three runs back in their half of the fifth, however, belting a triple to beat the shift, launching a two-run homer and then a solo home run to end the game on the NCAA’s eight-run mercy rule, 11-3 and advance to the Super Regional.
With the loss, the Cougars finish the season with a 38-17 record, going 2-2 in the Tempe Regional.