Bunch, Banks Lead To T-Bird Defeat

Nathan Bunch threw 120 pitches in BYU's first complete game and his first victory of the season. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)


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PROVO -- Freshman pitcher Nathan Bunch threw a four-hitter to lead BYU to an 8-3 victory over Southern Utah on Tuesday at Larry H. Miller Field.

Bunch pitched his first career and the Cougars’ first complete game of the year in securing the team’s eighth win of the season and improving his record to 1-0, throwing 120 pitches.

“It was a lot of fun being able to go all the way,” Bunch said, “I haven’t pitched on our home mound since the fall, so it took a little time to find my rhythm. Once I got my mechanics back I started to pitch much better.”

Offensively the Cougars (8-6) were led by Stetson Banks who went 3-for-4 including a first-inning solo homerun to center field that tied the score at one all.

“Banks is a great player,” said BYU head baseball coach Vance Law. “He puts a lot of pressure on the defense.”

Scoring the second and third runs for the Cougars were Steve Parker and Jonathan Cluff who both reached home in the first inning on a throwing error from Southern Utah’s catcher Dalen Isom.

On the defensive side the Cougars were bailed out in the top of the first inning by an incredible double play by right fielder Michael Bowen, who made a diving grab and then jumped to his feet and threw out the runner on second.

BYU’s solid defensive performance continued in the second and third innings. In the top of the second Southern Utah left three stranded after Bunch forced two fly balls to end the inning. The top of the third inning ended in similar fashion with the Thunderbirds leaving two more players on.

“He (Bunch) has done great all year long,” Law said. “Once he got his feet under him he did an outstanding job.”

Bunch was provided with extensive run support in the bottom of the second inning when the Cougars scored two runs off of four hits. Bowen started the inning with a line drive double to left field. J.T. Musso continued the innings success driving in Bowen with a single to center field for what proved to be the game-winning RBI. With a man on first and third, Sean McNaughton hit a sacrifice fly to right field putting the Cougars up 5-1.

“Our guys came out with intensity and kept the momentum going through out the game,” Law said. “We were hitting well and it became contagious.”

The Cougars bats came alive again in the bottom of the fourth with a lead off bunt single by Banks. Banks stole second and then scored the Cougars sixth run off of a single up the middle by Steve Parker.

In the top of the eighth the Cougars ran into some trouble after two SUU players reached base off of two errors. T-bird pinch hitter Derek Pena capitalized hitting a double to right center driving in two runs cutting into the BYU lead (6-3). Bunch cleaned up the mess retiring Matt Sanford to a sacrifice fly for the final out of the inning.

BYU scored two more runs in another impressive outing in the eighth inning. Parker who batted in a run in the eighth ended the game going 3-for-3. Extending the Cougar lead was Cluff who hit a sacrifice fly to left field driving McNaughton home in the games final run securing an 8-3 win.

The Cougars resume play on Thursday when they begin conference play against arch rival Utah. The three-game series with Utah starts in Salt Lake City at 3 p.m., followed by games in Provo at Miller Park on Friday and Saturday at 6 and 1 p.m., respectively.

All of the BYU-Utah games will be broadcast live over KSRR Radio (1400 AM) it is the first radio broadcast of the year by veteran announcer Brent Norton. Friday and Saturday’s games will be televised live on BYUTV.


Southern Utah at BYU

Mar 10, 2009 at Provo, Utah (Larry H.Miller Field)

Southern Utah 3

Player AB R H RBI BB SO PO A LOB

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

Ray Wright rf............ 4 1 0 0 1 0 2 0 0

Keli'i Zablan 2b......... 4 0 0 0 1 0 3 3 3

Bucky Aona dh............ 4 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0

Nick Freitas cf.......... 3 1 0 1 0 2 4 0 0

Chester Wilson 3b........ 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 1

Tyler Hogge 1b........... 4 0 1 0 0 1 6 0 0

Dalen Isom c............. 1 0 0 0 0 0 7 1 2

Derek Pena ph........... 1 0 1 2 0 0 0 0 0

Blake Olsen pr.......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Justin Neuhart c........ 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Matt Sanford lf.......... 3 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 2

Colby Ford ss............ 3 0 0 0 1 0 1 1 0

Steve Johnson p.......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0

Kyle Melling p.......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Kyle Hamman p........... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Totals................... 31 3 4 3 4 4 24 8 8

BYU 8

Player AB R H RBI BB SO PO A LOB

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

WALTON, Kent dh.......... 3 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0

LAW, Adam ph............ 1 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 2

BANKS, Stetson 2b........ 4 2 3 1 0 0 2 2 0

McNAUGHTON, Sean lf...... 3 1 1 1 1 0 2 0 0

PARKER, Steve 3b......... 3 1 3 2 2 0 0 3 0

CLUFF, Jonathan cf....... 4 1 1 1 0 2 3 0 4

KO, Kasey 1b............. 4 0 1 0 0 0 9 1 0

RELF, Brandon ss......... 3 0 1 0 0 0 3 3 1

BOWEN, Michael rf........ 4 1 1 0 0 1 4 1 0

MUSSO, J.T. c............ 3 1 1 1 0 2 4 0 1

NACAPOY, Chad c......... 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1

BUNCH, Nathan p.......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0

Totals................... 33 8 12 6 4 7 27 12 9

Score by Innings R H E

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

Southern Utah....... 100 000 020 - 3 4 3

BYU................. 320 100 02X - 8 12 2

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

E - WILSON; ISOM; HAMMAN; PARKER; KO. LOB - SUU 8; Cougars 9. 2B - PENA; KO;

BOWEN. HR - BANKS. HBP - ISOM 2; RELF. SH - BANKS. SF - FREITAS; McNAUGHTON;

CLUFF. SB - BANKS; McNAUGHTON.

Southern Utah IP H R ER BB SO AB BF NP

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

Steve Johnson....... 1.2 7 5 3 1 0 11 13 43

Kyle Melling........ 5.1 4 1 1 1 7 21 23 79

Kyle Hamman......... 1.0 1 2 1 2 0 1 5 27

BYU IP H R ER BB SO AB BF NP

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

BUNCH, Nathan....... 9.0 4 3 1 4 4 31 38 120

Win - None. Loss - None. Save - None.

HBP - by BUNCH (ISOM); by MELLING (RELF); by BUNCH (ISOM). PB - ISOM.

Pitches/strikes: JOHNSON 43/27; MELLING 79/58; HAMMAN 27/17; BUNCH 120/74.

Umpires - HP: Lew Carlton 1B: Jeff Cluff 3B: Matt Marziale

Start: 3:07 Time: Attendance: 320

Weather: 33 degrees and Sunny

Play-by-Play

Southern Utah 1st - WRIGHT walked (3-0). ZABLAN walked (3-0); WRIGHT

advanced to second. AONA singled to left field (0-2); ZABLAN advanced to

second; WRIGHT advanced to third. FREITAS flied out to rf, SF, RBI (1-2);

ZABLAN out at second rf to 1b to ss; WRIGHT scored. WILSON flied out to rf

(1-1). 1 run, 1 hit, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

BYU 1st - WALTON flied out to cf (1-0). BANKS homered to left field, RBI

(0-1). McNAUGHTON singled to left field (0-1). McNAUGHTON advanced to second on

a passed ball. PARKER walked (3-2). CLUFF singled to right field (2-0); PARKER

advanced to second; McNAUGHTON advanced to third. KO reached on a throwing

error by c, advanced to third (2-2); CLUFF scored, unearned; PARKER scored,

unearned; McNAUGHTON out at home p to c. RELF popped up to 2b (0-0). 3 runs,

3 hits, 1 error, 1 LOB.

Southern Utah 2nd - HOGGE struck out looking (2-2). ISOM hit by pitch

(2-2). SANFORD walked (3-0); ISOM advanced to second. FORD walked (3-1);

SANFORD advanced to second; ISOM advanced to third. WRIGHT flied out to cf

(0-0). ZABLAN popped up to 2b (1-2). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 3 LOB.

BYU 2nd - BOWEN doubled to left field (1-1). MUSSO singled to right

center, RBI (1-1); BOWEN scored. WALTON flied out to rf (3-2). BANKS singled to

right center (0-0); MUSSO advanced to third. McNAUGHTON flied out to rf, SF,

RBI (1-1); MUSSO scored. PARKER singled to right center (1-2); BANKS advanced

to third. MELLING to p for JOHNSON. CLUFF flied out to cf (1-0). 2 runs, 4

hits, 0 errors, 2 LOB.

Southern Utah 3rd - AONA singled to left field (1-0). FREITAS struck out

swinging (0-2). WILSON flied out to rf (0-0). HOGGE singled up the middle

(3-2); AONA advanced to third. ISOM grounded out to 3b (0-0). 0 runs, 2

hits, 0 errors, 2 LOB.

BYU 3rd - KO grounded out to 2b (2-2). RELF hit by pitch (1-2). BOWEN

popped up to 2b (0-1). MUSSO struck out swinging (0-2). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0

errors, 1 LOB.

Southern Utah 4th - SANFORD struck out swinging (0-2). FORD grounded out

to p (0-1). WRIGHT out at first p to 2b to 1b (2-0). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0

errors, 0 LOB.

BYU 4th - WALTON struck out swinging (0-2). BANKS singled, bunt (0-0).

BANKS stole second. McNAUGHTON popped up to ss (2-0). PARKER singled up the

middle, RBI (1-0); BANKS scored. CLUFF struck out swinging (0-2). 1 run, 2

hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

Southern Utah 5th - ZABLAN grounded out to ss (1-1). AONA flied out to

lf (1-0). FREITAS struck out swinging (1-2). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0

LOB.

BYU 5th - KO doubled to right center (0-0). RELF reached on a fielding

error by 3b (3-2). BOWEN struck out swinging (1-2). MUSSO struck out swinging

(2-2). LAW, Ad. pinch hit for WALTON. LAW, Ad. popped up to 2b (0-1). 0

runs, 1 hit, 1 error, 2 LOB.

Southern Utah 6th - NACAPOY to c for MUSSO. WILSON flied out to cf

(0-1). HOGGE flied out to rf (0-1). ISOM hit by pitch (2-0). SANFORD popped up

to ss (0-2). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

BYU 6th - BANKS grounded out to 2b (1-1). McNAUGHTON flied out to cf

(0-1). PARKER walked (3-2). CLUFF struck out swinging, out at first c to ss to

1b (1-2); PARKER advanced to second. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

Southern Utah 7th - FORD flied out to cf (1-1). WRIGHT grounded out to

3b (0-1). ZABLAN grounded out to 3b (1-1). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0

LOB.

BYU 7th - KO grounded out to 2b (0-1). RELF singled to shortstop (1-0).

BOWEN flied out to cf (1-2). NACAPOY struck out swinging (0-2). 0 runs, 1

hit, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

Southern Utah 8th - AONA popped up to 2b (0-1). FREITAS reached on a

fielding error by 1b (0-0). WILSON reached on a fielding error by 3b (0-1);

FREITAS advanced to second. HOGGE popped up to ss (2-0). PENA pinch hit for

ISOM. PENA doubled to right center, 2 RBI (3-2); WILSON scored, unearned;

FREITAS scored, unearned. OLSEN pinch ran for PENA. SANFORD flied out to lf

(2-0). 2 runs, 1 hit, 2 errors, 1 LOB.

BYU 8th - NEUHART to c for OLSEN. HAMMAN to p for MELLING. LAW, Ad.

walked (3-2). BANKS grounded out to 1b unassisted, SAC, bunt (0-0); LAW, Ad.

advanced to second. LAW, Ad. advanced to third on a throwing error by p.

McNAUGHTON walked (3-2). McNAUGHTON stole second. PARKER singled to right

field, RBI (2-2); McNAUGHTON advanced to third; LAW, Ad. scored. CLUFF flied

out to lf, SF, RBI (0-0); PARKER out at first lf to 3b to 1b; McNAUGHTON

scored, unearned. 2 runs, 1 hit, 1 error, 0 LOB.

Southern Utah 9th - FORD grounded out to ss (3-2). WRIGHT grounded out

to ss (0-1). ZABLAN grounded out to 2b (0-2). 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0

LOB.

Tags: Results