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BYU Athletics Blog

Freshman Quick Kicks: Danika Bowman

Aug 01, 2016 - Posted by Jack Urquhart at 1:24 pm | Updated: August 1, 2016 2:11 pm | Permalink

PROVO – Remembering previous team titles is a tough counting exercise for Danika Bowman.

"I think four national titles, a few regional titles, a few state titles," she said. "I think."

The freshman defender, who is from Redlands, California, stacked up quite a list of accomplishments before coming to BYU. Bowman played on Olympic development championship teams, leading as a captain. She was named high school MVP and defensive MVP in back-to-back years. She played at national camp before high school. The list goes on and on.

Bowman knows, however, that success won't come right away at BYU. 

"It's just a way different thing," she said. "There are so many good players and competition for playing time here. Club was tough, but you get comfortable with your coaches and teammates. Here, you start over. It was good to have the summer to get used to it."

Something that has helped her get used to things is spending time with other players on the team.

"They've all been so nice to us," Bowman said. "They have us over to dinner and talk to us and help us all the time."

Bowman becomes the fourth member on this year's roster from California, and the only player of the incoming four freshmen not from Utah. She's thankful to her parents, for helping her to accomplish what she has.

"They made a lot of sacrifices to help me be on a good team and travel," she said.

Freshman Quick Kicks: Brynlee Welch

Aug 01, 2016 - Posted by Jack Urquhart at 12:50 pm | Updated: August 1, 2016 2:12 pm | Permalink

PROVO – Brynlee Welch doubts she's the fastest player on the team.

"But I think it would be fun to race," she said.

Welch, an incoming freshman from Hyrum, Utah, ran track at Mountain Crest High School, running the 100 meters and anchoring the 4x100 meter team at the state meet.

"My speed has set me apart from other players at times," Welch said. "If I get beat, I have confidence that I can get back. On a long ball, I'm usually the first person back."

The third player ever to hail from Cache Valley for BYU, Welch is the second in two years, after sophomore Madie Siddoway. Like Siddoway, Welch played for the club team La Roca.

It wasn't clear that Welch would get offered to play with the Cougars.

"I got offered a year later than most girls do," she said. "But my club and club coach are the reason I was able to get offered and come here."

Welch is the first member of her family to come to BYU.

"We were an Aggie family," she said. "I'm kind of starting something new."

Taysom Hill one of 32 players on 2016 CFPA Performer of the Year preseason watch list

Jul 28, 2016 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 7:35 pm | Updated: July 28, 2016 7:47 pm | Permalink

Senior quarterback Taysom Hill was one of 32 players named to the 2016 National Performer of the Year preseason watch list by the College Football Performance Awards on Wednesday.

The list features 22 FBS quarterbacks and 10 running backs, honoring the nation's best collegiate performer.

In the 2015 season opener against Nebraska, Hill accounted for three touchdowns with two coming on the ground and another through the air. He had 268 passing yards and 72 rushing in the game before leaving with injury. Hill is the school's leader in quarterback rushing yards (2,212) and is No. 13 in career passing yards (4,606).

The CFPA National Performer of the Year Trophy will be announced on January 11, 2017.

BYU gymnastics participates in Spanish Fork Fiesta Days Parade

Jul 26, 2016 - Posted by Kristen Kerr at 3:27 pm | Updated: August 17, 2016 4:07 pm | Permalink

SPANISH FORK, Utah – BYU gymnastics, along with Cosmo, the stunt team and women’s volleyball, participated in the Spanish Fork Fiesta Days Parade Monday. 

Some of the gymnasts tumbled in the streets and walked on their hands while others skillfully performed on a moving trailer pulled in the parade. They were able to shake hands and interact with local members of the community. 

“It’s fun to be a part of the community, it’s easy to get involved,” BYU head coach Guard Young said. “We just want to be a part of it. We want to know them and for them to see us.”

The Cougars also participated in the Grand Parade as part of the Orem Summerfest festival earlier this summer. 

“We keep doing these parades because the girls want to do them,” Young said. “I ask them every year—we do it because of the girls. The girls are driving this thing.”

To view a photo gallery of the team in the Fiesta Days Parade, click here

College Sports Madness puts 19 players on Preseason All-Independent Teams

Jul 22, 2016 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 2:18 pm | Permalink

The staff at College Sports Madness has picked the top players in college football for the 2016 team. Headlining the 2016 Preseason All-Independent Teams are 19 players from BYU's squad.

Senior defensive back Kai Nacua was selected as the Defensive Player of the Year on the preseason list. Nacua grabbed six interceptions last year, tying a program record and finished tied for No. 7 nationally. He also returned two picks for touchdowns. 

Including Nacua, nine players made the first team. Fellow defensive back Michael Davis, linebackers Harvey Langi and Fred Warner along with defensive lineman Sae Tautu all earned spots on the first team defense.

On offense, running back Jamaal Williams, offensive linemen Brad Wilcox and Tejan Koroma and wide receiver Nick Kurtz were recognized as first teamers.

The second team defense included defensive linemen Logan Taele and Travis Tuiloma. The second team offense highlighted quarterback Taysom Hill, running back Algernon Brown, wide receiver Mitchell Juergens, tight end Tanner Balderree and offensive linemen Ului Lapuaho and Tuni Kanuch.

Special teamers Jonny Linehan (punter) and returner Riley Burt also made the second team.

Click see the entire College Sports Madness Football Preseason All-Conference Teams. 

Bravo to play with Team Mexico for third year

Jul 05, 2016 - Posted by Kimberlie Haner at 11:07 am | Updated: July 5, 2016 11:13 am | Permalink

For the third year in a row, Gordy Bravo will play for the Mexican National Team this summer, playing in two tournaments in July.

From July 5-10, Bravo and Team Mexico will participate in the U.S. World Cup of Softball XI in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Mexico will face off against China, USA, Japan, Czech Republic, Canada and New Zealand.

Dates, times and locations of the games can be found at the official website for the World Cup, along with live streaming options.

The other tournament Mexico will play in is the 2016 WBSC Women’s World Softball Championship in Surrey, British Columbia, starting July 15. Mexico will play Australia, Serbia and Switzerland. Games after that will be determined on results.

Information on the WBSC Championship can be found on its home page.

Bravo, a centerfielder from Corona, California, recently completed her collegiate career at BYU. The 2015 West Coast Conference Player of the Year capped off her time as a Cougar by marking her name in the record books. In her BYU career, she is fourth in batting average (.368), seventh in runs (141) and sixth in hits (238).

Bravo recently visited BYU Sports Nation to preview the summer with Team Mexico.

Cougars on to Beijing

May 15, 2016 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 7:45 am | Permalink

BYU concluded its Nanjing leg Saturday morning and has arrived in Beijing. While in Nanjing, the Cougars played three matches and took in some sightseeing. The team experienced the Nanjing Massacre Museum, walked on the Nanjing City Wall and got in some karaoke with some Nanjing locals. The Cougars had a great time in Nanjing and is looking forward to a great stop in Beijing. 

Cougars prepare for national championship match against Ohio State

May 06, 2016 - Posted by Royce Hinton at 5:03 pm | Updated: May 7, 2016 8:14 am | Permalink

BYU men's volleyball took to the court at Rec Hall Friday morning for a 90 minute practice. Following the training session, players Ben Patch, Jake Langlois, Erik Sikes and head coach Shawn Olmstead met the media for a press conference. The team studied film on Ohio State during the afternoon and evening in preparation for Saturday's match against the No. 3 seed Buckeyes. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and BYU Radio - Sirius XM 143. 

May Baseball Blog

May 05, 2016 - Posted by Ralph R. Zobell at 2:24 pm | Updated: May 6, 2016 7:59 pm | Permalink

MORE MISSIONARY NEWS:  Easton Walker received his mission call to Cusco, Peru, joining Bryan Call who has his call to Taiwan and Jackson Cluff who has his call to Atlanta, Ga.

ANOTHER ENGAGED PLAYER:  Brock Hale is the latest Cougar engaged to be married this summer.

SOUTHERN BBQ:  An item from last February is that the father's of Noah Hill and Casey Jacobsen drove to Birmingham, Alabama, pulling a BBQ smoker and prepared brisket, pork and ribs for the Cougars after one of their games against Samford.

WALK-UP MUSIC:  Here's the names of walkup songs (the non-R rated segments) for several of the BYU Cougars:

ESPNU ANNOUNCER:  The play-by-play announcer for the May 21 game on ESPNU against Santa Clara is expected to be Mike Couzens. Couzens was a play-by-play broadcaster for the Big Ten Network and also served as the broadcasting and media relations manager for the Fort Wayne TinCaps, the Single-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres.  The color analyst is yet to be named.

CENATIEMPO & FATHER:  Keaton Cenatiempo says he and his father Kris, who played baseball at Washington State in 1986, have competed on seven of the same college fields.  They are BYU, Pepperdine, Gonzaga, Cal Poly Pomona, San Diego State, Portland and Cal State Northridge.

SUMMER BALL ASSIGNMENTS:  Here are the summer ball assignments for some of the Cougars once they finish with the work at hand this season:  

WRISTBANDS FOR RILEY:  Actually the Cougars started wearing orange wristbands and writing the initials K.G. on their hats in support of  Kennadi, the 10-year-old sister of pitcher Riley Gates who was diagnosed last month with leukemia. The players and coaches also have the initials K.G. on their hats.

SANS STACHES:  Following the series losses at Saint Mary's and against Creighton all of the Cougars shaved their mustaches, but say #mustachemafia will return when they get an NCAA Regional bid.

BYU prepares for Long Beach State

May 04, 2016 - Posted by Royce Hinton at 8:11 pm | Updated: May 5, 2016 2:06 pm | Permalink

BYU men's volleyball took to Rec Hall for its first practice at the foreign Penn State gym Wednesday morning. Following an intense hour and a half practice, Ben Patch, Brenden Sander, Jake Langlois and head coach Shawn Olmstead participated in a press conference for the media. After studying film in the afternoon, later that night the team took part in team photos and the Final Four banquet where Michael Hatch was honored with the Elite 90 award - given to the student-athlete at the championship with the highest cumulative GPA while being a significant contributer on his team.