After winning its first regular season conference title in only its second year of NCAA Division I competition, the BYU (32-23, 11-6) softball team will enter the 2001 Mountain West Conference Tournament in Albuquerque, N.M., as the No. 1 seed and will play the winner of New Mexico and Colorado State, Thursday at 4:30 p.m.
The Cougars split with Utah on Friday, losing game one in a 14-7 slugfest before winning the second game, 5-1. They then swept the Utes Saturday, 14-11 and 2-1, winning the regular season MWC title for the first time in school history in only its second year of varsity competition.
BYU Probable Starters
Â•RF - Oli Keohohou- R/R, Fr. (.466, 61 hits, 63 runs, 20 HR, 59 RBI)
Â•LF - Liz Smith- L/R, Jr. (.280, 46 hits, 32 runs, 9 RBI, 12 SB)
Â•3B - Elizabeth Pierce-Boydston - R/R, Jr. (.323, 54 hits, 29 runs, 37 RBI)
Â•DH - Brooke Cadiente - R/L, So. (.321, 53 hits, 33 runs, 11 HR, 49 RBI)
Â•1B - Mindy Hanson - R/R, Sr. (.263, 35 hits, 16 runs, 20 RBI)
Â•CF -Lindsey Hodgen-Kelly - R/R, Sr. (.308, 44 hits, 33 runs, 12 RBI, 20 SB)
Â•2B - Kari Pringle- R/R, Sr. (.283, 32 hits, 12 runs, 14 RBI)
Â•SS - Becca Erickson - R/R, Sr. (.212, 29 hits, 20 runs, 6 HR, 26 RBI)
Â•C -Angie Christiansen - R/R, Sr. (.200, 23 hits, 13 runs, 13 RBI)
Â•P - Maryon DeWitt-Wallentine- R/R, Sr. (16-14, 3.56 ERA, 160 SO, 179.1 IP)
After playing in 54 games, freshman Oli Keohohou is among the nation's elite in a variety of categories. She is second in the NCAA's with a .466 batting average and second in home runs with 20 in 54 games, an average of .37 homers per game. She is eighth in runs batted in with 59, averaging 1.09 RBI a game. As a team, BYU is 12th in the nation in scoring with 298 runs in 55 games, an average of 5.42 a game.
Keohohou, a two-time MWC Player of the Week, leads the conference in batting average (.466), runs scored (62), slugging percentage (1.031), on-base percentage (.627), walks (60) and is tied for the league lead with three triples. Pitcher Meghann Pricer leads the league in opponents batting average (.218). As a team, BYU leads the conference in batting average (.287), slugging percentage (.454), on base percentage (.370), runs batted in (263), runs scored (298) and triples (18). Cougar pitchers have allowed the fewest hits (323) in the conference, while BYU opponents are batting .237, the lowest in the conference.
After 55 games, Keohohou leads the team in batting average (.466), hits (61), home runs (20), RBI (59), runs scored (63), walks (60), triples (3) and slugging percentage (1.031). Elizabeth Pierce-Boydston leads the team in at-bats (167) and doubles (13). Lindsey Hodgen-Kelly leads the team with 20 stolen bases.
The Utes enter the tournament with a 35-23-1 record, including a 11-8-1 conference record. Lindsey Trevis is batting .383 with 69 hits, including 11 home runs and 55 RBI. Freshman Melissa Stahnke has a .355 batting average and 65 hits, including 21 home runs and 65 RBI. Niki Hayhurst is batting .348 with 57 hits, including 14 home runs and 43 RBI. Pitcher Kristin Arbogast is 27-17 with a 2.46 ERA and 235 strikeouts in 307.2 innings of work. BYU took 3-of-4 from Utah the final weekend of the regular season, losing 14-7 before winning three straight, 5-1, 14-11 and 2-1.
Scouting San Diego State
The Aztecs have a 35-22 record, including a 10-8 conference record. Tiffany Goudy is batting .322 with 57 hits, including three home runs and 31 RBI. Kellie Nordhagen has a .340 batting average with 65 hits, including eight doubles and 13 RBI. Sarah Hershman is batting .305 with 51 hits, including five doubles and 19 RBI. Pitcher Sandra Durazo is 24-12 with a 1.36 ERA and 156 strikeouts in 236 innings of work. She was named the MWC Pitcher of the Week five times this season. BYU split with San Diego State in two games this season, losing 3-1 and winning 4-0. The other two games were cancelled due to inclement weather.
Scouting New Mexico
The Lobos have a 37-22-1 record, including a 10-9-1 conference record. Holly Glass is batting .368 with 60 hits, including 15 RBI. Krissy Keene has a .306 batting average and 52 hits, including four home runs and 30 RBI. Kathy Moore is batting .291 with 39 hits, including eight home runs and 24 RBI. Pitcher Hayley Punter is 14-7 with a 2.70 ERA and 157 strikeouts in 163.1 innings of work, while Amy Dumas is 16-6 with a 1.19 ERA and 74 strikeouts in 152.2 innings pitched. BYU went 2-for-4 against New Mexico this season, winning 4-1 before losing 4-3 in Albuquerque, while losing 2-0 and winning 7-0 in Provo.
Scouting Colorado State
The Rams enter the tournament with a 10-35 record, including a 7-12 conference record. Holly Schmillen is batting .380 with 49 hits, including 11 doubles, seven home runs and 23 RBI. Brooke Boyer has a .250 batting average and 34 hits, including nine RBI. Katie Benton is batting .203 with 26 hits, including five doubles and 13 RBI. Kyla Kiester is 7-16 with a 4.39 ERA and 53 strikeouts in 153.2 innings of work. BYU took 2-of-3 from Colorado State this season, winning 6-2 in Ft. Collins, while losing 7-3 before winning 10-4 in Provo. The other game at CSU was cancelled due to rain.
The Rebels have a 26-28 record, including a 7-13 conference record. Rachel Goodpaster is batting .351 with 52 hits, including 13 doubles, nine home runs and 32 RBI. Samantha Kimura has a .311 batting average and 52 hits, including 11 doubles and 30 RBI. Linda Garza is batting .287 with 45 hits, including 10 doubles and 35 RBI. Pitcher Kacey Ellis is 12-11 with a 2.46 ERA and 58 strikeouts in 142.1 innings of work, while teammate Geney Orris is 6-13 with a 2.24 ERA and 81 strikeouts in 128 innings pitched. BYU took 3-of-4 from UNLV this season, losing 4-3 and winning 9-4 in Las Vegas, while winning both games in Provo, 7-1 and 10-2.
Player of the Week Honors
Keohohou earned her first-ever Mountain West Conference Player of the Week honor for her performance at the Red Desert Classic March 2-3. In four games, Keohohou went 5-10 (.500) with four home runs, six RBI, four runs scored and one double. In the 7-6 upset of No. 12 Washington, she hit a solo home run to tie the game at 4-4 in the fifth inning and then hit a three-run shot in the sixth to give the Cougars a 7-4 lead. She ended the game going 2-for-3 with two hits and four RBI while also scoring two runs. Keohohou scored the only run of the game against No. 17 Nebraska with a solo home run in the fourth inning. Against Southern Utah, she went 2-for-3 with a home run and a double while also scoring a run.
Keohohou earned her second Mountain West Conference Player of the Week award for her performances against San Diego and UNLV April 27-28. She hit .571 (4-for-7) with two RBI, five runs scored, two home runs and was walked seven times in four games. After hitting a home run in the series against SDSU, Keohohou was perfect from the plate (3-for-3) in the two-game series against UNLV and drew five walks. In the first contest, she went 2-for-2 with a home run and two runs scored, while reaching base safely in her only at bat in game two.
Sophomore Brooke Cadiente earned her first Mountain West Conference Player of the Week award for her performance against the University of Utah May 4-5. Cadiente hit .538 (7-for13) with eight RBI, three runs scored, two home runs and a double in the four games against Utah. In the first game of the series, Cadiente went 3-for-5 with a three-run home run and a run scored in the 14-7 loss. She went 1-for-3 in BYU's 5-1 victory in the second game. In Provo, Cadiente went 3-for-3 at the plate, with four RBI and another three-run home run, her 11th of the season, leading the Cougars to a 14-11 win. In the regular season finale, Cadiente went 0-for-2 but drove in the winning run on a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning of BYU's 2-1 victory.
Coach Mary Kay Amicone
Mary Kay Amicone was named BYU's first-ever varsity softball coach on May 6, 1999, three months after the announcement was made to upgrade the softball team from club to varsity status. In her first season, she led the team to a 16-27 (.372) record, including a 7-13 conference record, good for fifth place. Prior to becoming the head coach at BYU, Amicone served as an assistant coach at the University of Utah (1991, '93-95, '98-99). During that time, the Utes finished fifth ('91) and seventh ('94) at the NCAA Women's College World Series and were regional participants in 1995. She is assisted by Gordon Eakin and Lisa Hall.
"It's going to be a dog fight. Everyone has a good chance of winning but it is going to come down to who makes the fewest mistakes and who's bats stay hot. "--Mary Kay Amicone
Cougars to Host 2002 MWC Tournament Â• Softball/Baseball Complex
Because BYU won the 2001 MWC regular season title, it will host the 2002 MWC Tournament.
The newly-opened Gail Miller Field at BYU's Miller Park has 2,100 chair seats all in the lower bowl, making it one of the top-10 seating softball facilities in the NCAA. The dimensions are 210 feet down the left and right field lines and 220 in center field. The field faces northwest and is located west of the BYU Marriott Center. The one-of-a-kind mirrored-image softball/baseball complex was made possible by primary donors Larry and Gail Miller, together with Sy and Betty Kimball. The tensile roof is constructed from a teflon fabric made by Japan's Birdair Corporation and is pulled taut by cables, similar to the design on the Denver International Airport.
Miller Park was built by Sahara construction with Salt Lake City architect Valentiner/Crane. A shared press box houses radio and TV broadcasts and seating for print media and game-day operations. There are separate locker rooms for visitors and Cougar clubhouses for both softball and baseball. The complex includes concession stands, a memorabilia mezzanine, handicapped seating, an elevator, an umpire room, a hosting facility, an equipment room, training room, indoor batting cages and coaches offices. Both fields are lighted. The softball scoreboard is located in right field and was manufactured by Daktronics of Brookings, South Dakota.
Preseason Mountain West Conference Coaches' Poll
BYU was picked by the coaches in the Mountain West Conference to finish fifth in the conference in the preseason poll released Jan. 25. In-state rival University of Utah, where BYU head coach Mary Kay Amicone played and was an assistant coach for seven years, was picked to finish first.
Mountain West Conference Preseason Coaches' Poll
1. Utah (5) 25
2. New Mexico (1) 20
3. San Diego State 15
4. Colorado State 11
5. BYU 10
6. UNLV 9