Junior JC Clayton
The BYU softball team travels to its final tournament of the season as the Cougars head to Fullerton, Calif., to play Purdue and Arizona State on Thursday, UC Davis on Friday, and Arizona and Penn State on Saturday.
Thurs., Mar. 15
11 a.m. PT
No. 5 Arizona State
Thurs., Mar. 15
3:30 p.m. PT
Fri., Mar. 16
7:30 p.m. PT
No. 13 Arizona
Sat., Mar. 17
1 p.m. PT
Sat., Mar. 17
5:30 p.m. PT
COUGAR QUICK HITS
— The Cougars did not play last week after its lone game of the week at Utah was called off.
— BYU would like to get some monkeys off its back at the Garman Classic. The Cougars have a combined 0-12 record against Arizona and Arizona State and are looking for their first win against either school. In addition, last time the Cougars played Penn State the Nittany Lions won, 17-4, the second-worst loss in team history.
— Senior Delaney Willard has led the way for BYU this season and is ranked in the NCAA top-15 in four different categories, including batting average (5th, .500), slugging percentage (10th, .966), RBI per game (12th, 1.35) and on base percentage (14th, .577).
— BYU will face two ranked opponents this weekend and has a 2-3 record against top-25 teams this season. The Cougars beat No. 15 Texas A&M (3-2) and No. 11 Oregon (2-1) but have since lost to No. 21 Oklahoma State (3-2), No. 1 Florida (3-0) and No. 14 Texas A&M (14-8 in eight innings).
• BYU has never lost to Purdue, winning twice in both the 2005 and 2007 seasons.
• The Boilermakers won their first nine games of the year but have struggled lately as the competition has improved, losing five or their last seven games, including two to Oregon, one to Fresno State and one to Cal.
• Purdue has a balanced offensive attack led by Andie Varsho and Lindsey Rains each with a team-high 26 hits.
• Only one senior regularly contributes for Purdue which has a starting lineup of four sophomores and three juniors.
• The Sun Devils are arguably the best hitting team in the nation, leading the country with a .375 batting average and .646 slugging percentage. ASU is also second in the nation averaging 1.7 home runs per game third in the nation with a 8.56 runs per game average.
• Alix Johnson has a .558 batting average in 17 games played this season while Katelyn Boyd is one of seven players currently batting above .400 with a .493 average.
• ASU has 46 home runs compared to 13 for their opponents but the biggest margin may be in the stolen base category - the Sun Devils have totaled 41 while allowing just five in 10 attempts.
• UC Davis has an overall record of 9-17 after getting three wins in its latest series against Idaho State.
• Pitcher Justine Vela has a 7-8 record but has racked up 122 strikeouts on opponents.
• Megan Guzman has a .319 average to lead UC Davis.
• The last two meetings between these two teams in well-remembered, as Arizona knocked BYU out of the NCAA Tournament in 2010 in the Cougars’ first-ever Super Regional apperance.
• After losing three of their first five, the Wildcats have won 14 of their last 15 games.
• Kenzie Fowler returns as the ace for Arizona, coming in with a 1.55 ERA and 7-0 record. At the plate, Brigette Del Ponte has a .455 average with 25 hits, seven doubles and five home runs.
• Both PSU pitchers have an ERA above 4.00 with Marissa Diescher at 4.16 and Lisa Akamine at 4.24.
• Alyssa Renwick is the Lions on base machine with a team-high 22 hits, all of which are singles. Penn State has just four home runs and no triples on the season.
After a slow start, sophomore pitcher Tori Almond picked up two complete-game wins at the San Diego Classic. Almond went a full seven innings, allowing no walks and one run with seven Ks for the victory. The next day vs. Charlotte, Almond again had seven strikeouts, this time allowing just one hit, no runs
and two walks. The sophomore is second in the WAC averaging 8.58 strikeouts per game.
Senior Stacie Toney has quietly put up big numbers for the Cougars this year at the plate. Toney leads BYU with nine multi-hit games, including four such games at the Desert Classic and two in her last two games against Long Beach State and Charlotte. She is currently on a career-high seven-game hitting
Toney, who is one of two players on the roster to get married this past summer, is second on the team with a .434 batting average and is second on the team with five doubles, 15 RBI and 36 total bases with a .679 slugging percentage.