Ashlyn Russell hit a grand slam for BYU in a double-header win over Utah. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- BYU softball made history tonight as they sent the Utes running home with no wins in tonight's double-header at Gail Miller Field. BYU won 7-2 and 4-3 making this the fourth consecutive win against Utah.
Utah took the lead in the first inning of the first game after Devina Quintero singled to left field sending the Ute runners on second and third home.
"I expected a tough game and we certainly got it," BYU head softball coach Eakin said. "I knew Utah wasn't going to leave quietly."
BYU stopped the Utes in the bottom of the third inning as Ashlyn Russell hit her 17th home run of the season. Russell's grand slam gave BYU a 4-2 advantage over the Utes. The Cougars didn't stop there. Lindi Kennedy slammed the ball over the fence in right center. Kennedy had a two RBI bringing the Cougars up to 6-2.
"Russell was huge with her grand slam in the first game," Eakin said.
In the fourth inning Debbie Dodds singled through the right side. Ianeta Le`i doubled to right center sending Dodds home, giving the Cougars a 7-2 advantage. Kennedy ended the first game as she caught a fly in right field.
The second game was scoreless until the fifth inning. BYU had a chance to make something happen in the third inning with bases loaded and two strong hitters, Ianeta Le`i and Russell, up to bat, but the Utes held the Cougars scoreless.
It wasn't until the bottom of the fifth inning that the tides began to change in favor of BYU. Utah pitcher Brianna Gourdin walked Jennifer Whiteley and Krystle Chamberlain. Dodds doubled to left field sending Whiteley and Chamberlain home bringing the score to 2-0. After Dodds advanced to third off a wild pitch, she also scored for the Cougars off Russell's sacrifice fly to right field.
After the Utes tied the game up in the top of the sixth inning, 3-3, BYU left fielder Krystle Chamberlain raced to catch a fly ball sending the Cougars to the bottom of the sixth inning.
Dodds finished the game for the Cougars as she singled through the left side sending Whiteley, who was on second, home and giving BYU a 4-3 win over the Utes.
"Dodds has been clutch in conference play," Eakin said. "Dodds came through time and time again."
Tonight marked history for the Cougars against their rivals. This was the first time BYU swept Utah in all four games of regular season play.
BYU will rest tomorrow as they get ready to face Florida State at home on Friday at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. for their last home game of the season.