Bull is just five strikeouts away from passing Tori Almond for third among freshman pitchers in program history. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
PROVO, Utah – After a successful home opener, BYU softball turns its focus on Idaho State for a three-game series Friday and Saturday at Gail Miller Field.
BYU (11-18, 0-0 WCC)
BYU overcame the odds in the win against Oregon. It was the first time this season in which the opponent has out hit BYU at the plate, but the Cougars have still won the game.
Lacey Millett Hofstedt hit an inside-the-park grand slam on Tuesday against Oregon. It was the first extra base hit of her career and the first inside the park home run since Gordy Bravo hit one down the left-field line against Loyola Marymount last season. Her run was the game-winning run after a four-run inning closed the Cougars lead to one in the top of the seventh.
BYU has defeated two teams ranked in the top five this season, No. 2/3 Oregon and No. 3/2 Tennessee. The team had defeated only two top-five teams since their addition to the athletics program in 2000 until last year (No. 2 Stanford in 2002 and No. 2 Cal in 2005).
McKenna Bull was the winning pitcher in both wins against No. 2 teams Tennessee and Oregon, while Tori Almond earned the save in both games. Bull has had a successful stretch of five games allowing eight earned runs and striking out 36 batters.
Idaho State (18-12, 2-1 Big Sky)
Idaho State traveled to Portland, Ore., last week and took two of three games from Portland State to begin the defense of its regular season Big Sky Conference Championship. The Bengals have split two close contests against UVU and the University of Utah so far in their Utah road trip.
The Bengals are an experienced team entering the year with eight returning starters. However, they are led at the plate by freshman outfielder Kacie Burnett. Burnett is hitting .469 on the year with 33 runs. Junior infielder Vicky Galasso and senior catcher Terah Blackwell provide the bulk of the run scoring for Idaho State combining for 79 RBIs (47 percent of the team total) and 19 of the team’s 24 home runs. They are ranked eighth in the NCAA with a .338 team batting average and 11th scoring 6.75 runs per game.
Senior Haley Douglas is the primary pitcher for the Bengals. She has an 11-7 record with 32 strikeouts and a 5.10 ERA. Sophomores Bailey Foster and Jessica Tolmie are the relief pitchers for the Bengals. Foster has made 21 appearances this year and has a 5-4 record and a 4.62 ERA. Tolmie has made 11 appearances with a 3.42 ERA and a 2-1 record.