.500 At Last

Patrick Wells struck out seven in seven innings against Air Force Saturday. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

COLORADO SPRINGS -- Ben Saylor hit two home runs while Patrick Wells baffled Air Force's hitters in BYU's 17-4 rout of the Academy on Saturday.

Kent Walton, Saylor and Dane Nielsen all homered as BYU won its sixth straight game and evened its overall record to 22-22 while improving its conference record to 7-6. The Cougars now stand alone in fourth place in the Mountain West Conference with nine league games remaining. The series against Air Force (10-26, 1-12 in MWC) marks the first time this season that the Cougars have swept a conference series.

Patrick Wells (5-4, 4.82) was brilliant in his start for the Cougars in seven innings of work. The new BYU graduate got two outs in the first on a Cougar double play before allowing a home run to Brad Madison on a 2-1 pitch. The run gave the Falcons their first lead of the series, but after that it was all Wells.

Speaking on the Cougar lefty BYU Coach Vance Law said, "He was outstanding. He was as sharp as I've seen him in his time since he's come here to BYU."

The Cougar hurler found his spots and had Air Force's hitters on edge all day as he allowed just two hits and two walks while retiring 20 of 22 through seven innings while striking out seven. The walks were erased by a throw out by Casey Nelson on a steal attempt in the fourth and the double play in the first.

The trouble for Air Force started in the second when BYU's hitters combined for seven runs on six hits, including a home run each by Saylor and Walton. Three of the runs were unearned as the Falcons committed two errors in the frame. The inning marked the first time this season that two Cougars have homered in the same inning. The outburst by BYU put the men from Provo up 7-1 after two complete.

BYU added a run in the third frame on an RBI double by Blake Crosby and another on the Falcons' third error of the game. The score after three inning was 9-1 as Wells cruised through the Air Force lineup. Crosby hit 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs.

Four runs in the both the sixth and eighth innings by BYU, including Nielsen's homer, put the game far out of reach. For the second game in a row Coach Law used nearly every position bench player available.

"I'm very happy for them for that very reason," he said. "They've had limited opportunities, but have kept themselves ready. It's really nice to know that those guys are enjoying the opportunity when it comes."

The Falcons added a run in the bottom of the eighth inning against BYU reliever James Platt to make the score 17-2 on an RBI double by Carpenter. They added two more in the bottom of the ninth against Michael Barrett.

Next on the BYU agenda is a Tuesday game at Utah Valley State at 7 p.m.

Then Cougars will return to Provo for their final home stand of the season, where they will play nine games before a season-finale three-game set against in-state rival Utah.

BYU at Air Force

Apr 29, 2006 at Colorado Springs, CO (Security Service Field)

BYU 17 (22-22,7-6 MWC)

Player AB R H RBI BB SO PO A LOB

------------------------------------------------------

JOHNSON, Seth cf......... 3 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 0

CARTER, Austin cf....... 2 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0

VILLEZCAS, Marcos ss..... 2 1 0 0 1 1 1 3 0

VARGAS, Daniel ph/ss.... 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0

SAYLOR, Ben rf........... 4 2 2 4 0 1 1 0 3

WORTHAM, Jake ph/rf..... 2 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 1

HIESTAND, Jeff 1b........ 3 1 0 0 1 0 7 1 0

BARNES, Clayton ph/1b... 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 1

KO, Kasey dh............. 6 3 3 1 0 1 0 0 0

WALTON, Kent lf.......... 4 2 2 2 0 0 0 0 0

NIELSEN, Dane lf........ 2 1 1 2 0 0 3 0 0

CROSBY, Blake 3b......... 4 2 3 2 0 0 1 1 0

JOHNSON, Chris 3b....... 2 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 1

NELSON, Casey c.......... 4 1 1 0 0 0 5 2 0

MUSSO, J.T. c........... 1 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0

BANKS, Stetson 2b........ 4 1 2 1 0 0 2 2 2

JOHNSON, Jason 2b....... 1 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 0

WELLS, Patrick p......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0

PLATT, James p.......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

BARRETT, Josh p......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Totals................... 48 17 20 16 2 4 27 12 8

Air Force 4 (10-26,1-12 MWC)

Player AB R H RBI BB SO PO A LOB

------------------------------------------------------

DERBIGNY, Chay lf........ 3 0 0 0 1 1 1 0 0

GRIGGS, Jason 2b......... 4 0 0 0 0 0 4 6 2

MADISON, Brad rf......... 3 1 1 1 1 0 3 1 0

BOLT, Karl 1b............ 4 1 2 0 0 1 10 0 0

MEENTS, Josh dh/p........ 3 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 1

CARPENTER, Bob c......... 4 1 2 1 0 2 4 0 0

ADAMS, Billy 3b.......... 3 0 0 1 0 1 3 3 0

POLSTON, Jon cf.......... 4 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 1

VASQUEZ, Andrew ss....... 3 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 0

ALLEN, Casey p........... 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0

PRATT, Paul p........... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

VIGNOLA, Paul p......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Totals................... 31 4 7 4 2 7 27 13 4

Score by Innings R H E

-------------------------------------------

BYU................. 072 004 040 - 17 20 0

Air Force........... 100 000 012 - 4 7 5

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E - GRIGGS(3); ADAMS(5); POLSTON(9); VASQUEZ(3); ALLEN(1). DP - Cougars 1;

Falcons 2. LOB - Cougars 8; Falcons 4. 2B - WORTHAM(2); KO(4); CROSBY 2(7);

MUSSO(2); CARPENTER 2(4). 3B - BANKS(2); BOLT(2). HR - SAYLOR 2(15);

WALTON(3); NIELSEN(1); MADISON(1). HBP - JOHNSON, S.; VILLEZCAS; MEENTS. SF

- ADAMS(1). CS - MADISON(1).

BYU IP H R ER BB SO AB BF NP

--------------------------------------------------

WELLS, Patrick...... 7.0 2 1 1 2 7 21 23 91

PLATT, James........ 1.0 3 1 1 0 0 6 6 15

BARRETT, Josh....... 1.0 2 2 2 0 0 4 6 17

Air Force IP H R ER BB SO AB BF NP

--------------------------------------------------

ALLEN, Casey........ 5.0 10 9 5 0 3 25 27 78

PRATT, Paul......... 1.0 3 4 4 2 0 7 9 32

VIGNOLA, Paul....... 2.0 7 4 4 0 1 12 12 37

MEENTS, Josh........ 1.0 0 0 0 0 0 4 4 13

Win - WELLS (5-4). Loss - ALLEN (1-3). Save - None.

WP - ALLEN(4). HBP - by ALLEN (JOHNSON, S.); by ALLEN (VILLEZCAS); by BARRETT

(MEENTS). Pitches/strikes: WELLS 91/54; PLATT 15/10; BARRETT 17/11; ALLEN 78/49;

PRATT 32/15; VIGNOLA 37/23; MEENTS 13/7.

Umpires - HP: Dan Wiekle 1B: Jeff Jenkins 3B: Chad McCardell

Start: Noon Time: 2:29 Attendance: 189

BYU at Air Force - Play-by-Play

Apr 29, 2006 at Colorado Springs, CO (SecurityServiceField)

Score by Innings R H E

-------------------------------------------

BYU................. 072 004 040 - 17 20 0

Air Force........... 100 000 012 - 4 7 5

-------------------------------------------

BYU starters: 26/cf JOHNSON, S.; 10/ss VILLEZCAS; 25/rf SAYLOR; 32/1b HIESTAND;

33/dh KO; 9/lf WALTON; 30/3b CROSBY; 8/c NELSON; 3/2b BANKS; 4/p WELLS;

Air Force starters: 25/lf DERBIGNY; 17/2b GRIGGS; 20/rf MADISON; 13/1b BOLT;

8/dh MEENTS; 30/c CARPENTER; 31/3b ADAMS; 14/cf POLSTON; 3/ss VASQUEZ; 29/p

ALLEN;

BYU 1st - JOHNSON, S. popped up to p (1-2). VILLEZCAS struck out looking

(2-2). SAYLOR grounded out to 2b (2-2). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

Air Force 1st - DERBIGNY walked (3-2). GRIGGS grounded into double play

3b to 2b to 1b (2-0); DERBIGNY out on the play. MADISON homered down the lf

line, RBI (2-1). BOLT struck out looking (2-2). 1 run, 1 hit, 0 errors, 0

LOB.

BYU 2nd - HIESTAND fouled out to 1b (1-1). KO singled to left field

(3-2). WALTON homered to left field, 2 RBI (1-0); KO scored. CROSBY singled to

shortstop (0-0). NELSON reached on a fielder's choice (0-0); CROSBY advanced to

second on a throwing error by ss. BANKS singled to center field, RBI (1-1);

NELSON advanced to second; CROSBY scored, unearned. BANKS advanced to second on

the throw; NELSON advanced to third on a throwing error by p. JOHNSON, S.

singled, advanced to second on the throw, 2 RBI (2-0); BANKS scored; NELSON

scored. VILLEZCAS flied out to lf (0-0); JOHNSON, S. advanced to third. SAYLOR

homered to right center, 2 RBI, unearned (1-2); JOHNSON, S. scored, unearned.

HIESTAND flied out to rf (2-0). 7 runs, 6 hits, 2 errors, 0 LOB.

Air Force 2nd - MEENTS struck out swinging (1-2). CARPENTER struck out

swinging, out at first c to 1b (1-2). ADAMS struck out swinging (1-2). 0

runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

BYU 3rd - KO struck out swinging (2-2). WALTON singled through the left

side (0-0). CROSBY doubled to center field, RBI (0-1); WALTON scored. NELSON

reached on an error by cf, advanced to second, out at third cf to rf to ss to

3b (1-0); CROSBY scored, unearned. BANKS tripled to right center (0-0).

JOHNSON, S. hit by pitch (0-0). VILLEZCAS hit by pitch (1-0); JOHNSON, S.

advanced to second. SAYLOR struck out swinging (1-2). 2 runs, 3 hits, 1

error, 3 LOB.

Air Force 3rd - POLSTON flied out to 2b (1-0). VASQUEZ grounded out to p

(0-0). DERBIGNY struck out swinging (2-2). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0

LOB.

BYU 4th - HIESTAND popped up to ss (0-2). KO grounded out to 2b (3-2).

WALTON grounded out to p (0-0). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

Air Force 4th - GRIGGS out at first 1b to p (1-0). MADISON walked (3-1).

MADISON out at second c to ss, caught stealing. BOLT flied out to rf (1-1).

0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

BYU 5th - CROSBY fouled out to 3b (0-0). NELSON singled through the left

side (1-0). NELSON advanced to second on a wild pitch. BANKS popped into double

play 3b to 2b (2-1); NELSON out on the play. 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 0

LOB.

Air Force 5th - MEENTS lined out to 3b (3-2). CARPENTER struck out

looking (1-2). ADAMS grounded out to ss (0-0). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0

LOB.

BYU 6th - PRATT to p for ALLEN. JOHNSON, S. grounded out to 2b (0-0).

VILLEZCAS walked (3-1). SAYLOR homered to left field, 2 RBI (1-0); VILLEZCAS

scored. HIESTAND walked (3-2). KO doubled to left center, RBI (3-1); HIESTAND

scored. WALTON flied out to rf (1-1). CROSBY doubled to center field, RBI

(0-0); KO scored. NELSON reached on a fielding error by 3b (3-2); CROSBY

advanced to third. BANKS grounded out to 3b (1-0). 4 runs, 3 hits, 1 error,

2 LOB.

Air Force 6th - CARTER to cf for JOHNSON, S.. POLSTON grounded out to ss

(0-0). VASQUEZ grounded out to 2b (2-2). DERBIGNY grounded out to ss (1-1).

0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

BYU 7th - VIGNOLA to p for PRATT. CARTER flied out to rf (0-0). VARGAS

pinch hit for VILLEZCAS. VARGAS popped up to 2b (2-2). WORTHAM pinch hit for

SAYLOR. WORTHAM doubled to left field (3-2). BARNES pinch hit for HIESTAND.

BARNES grounded out to 1b unassisted (1-0). 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 1

LOB.

Air Force 7th - VARGAS to ss. WORTHAM to rf. NIELSEN to lf for WALTON.

JOHNSON, C. to 3b for CROSBY. MUSSO to c for NELSON. JOHNSON, J. to 2b for

BANKS. GRIGGS flied out to lf (2-1). MADISON flied out to lf (2-1). BARNES to

1b. BOLT tripled to right center (3-2). MEENTS struck out swinging (1-2). 0

runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

BYU 8th - KO singled through the right side (0-0). NIELSEN homered to

left center, 2 RBI (0-0); KO scored. JOHNSON, C. singled to center field (0-0).

MUSSO doubled to right center (0-0); JOHNSON, C. advanced to third. JOHNSON, J.

singled to right field, RBI (1-2); MUSSO advanced to third; JOHNSON, C. scored.

CARTER singled to right field, RBI (3-2); JOHNSON, J. advanced to second; MUSSO

scored. VARGAS grounded into double play 3b to 2b to 1b (1-0); CARTER out on

the play; JOHNSON, J. advanced to third. WORTHAM struck out swinging (3-2).

4 runs, 6 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

Air Force 8th - PLATT to p for WELLS. CARPENTER doubled to right field

(2-2). ADAMS grounded out to ss (2-1). POLSTON singled to left field (1-1);

CARPENTER advanced to third. VASQUEZ singled down the rf line, RBI (0-0);

POLSTON advanced to second; CARPENTER scored. DERBIGNY flied out to lf (0-0);

VASQUEZ advanced to second; POLSTON advanced to third. GRIGGS grounded out to

ss (0-0). 1 run, 3 hits, 0 errors, 2 LOB.

BYU 9th - MEENTS to p. / for VIGNOLA. BARNES reached on a fielding

error by 2b (1-0). KO grounded out to 2b (1-2); BARNES advanced to second.

NIELSEN popped up to 2b (3-1). JOHNSON, C. grounded out to 2b (1-0). 0 runs,

0 hits, 1 error, 1 LOB.

Air Force 9th - BARRETT to p for PLATT. MADISON popped up to 2b (2-2).

BOLT singled up the middle (1-0). MEENTS hit by pitch (0-0); BOLT advanced to

second. CARPENTER doubled down the rf line, RBI (1-2); MEENTS advanced to

third; BOLT scored. ADAMS flied out to rf, SF, RBI (1-1); MEENTS scored.

POLSTON reached on a fielder's choice (0-0); CARPENTER out at third 3b

unassisted. 2 runs, 2 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

Tags: Results