PROVO, Utah - With an undefeated home record against non-conference opponents since 2006, the BYU softball team brought home another win against Utah Valley 3-1 on Tuesday.
“I think it always has been a little bit of a rivalry in a good sense,” said BYU coach Gordon Eakin
about the competition with UVU. “We have a good relationship with UVU and their coaching staff. Obviously, we both want to beat each other but there’s a tremendous amount of respect from one program to the other.”
BYU (36-13) faced UVU earlier in the year and won 3-1 in the first meeting that was cut early by a rain delay. Their win today secured the win in the series between the two teams who will also play Wednesday at UVU.
With the score tied, 1-1, Katie Manuma
answered for the Cougars in the bottom of the third with a two-run home run to right field to bring in Delaney Willard
and put BYU in the lead.
UVU scored early in the top of the first with a two-out solo home run by Amanda Robinson.
Fighting back in the bottom of the first, Jessica Dugas
and Tiffany Messerschmidt
both led off the inning with walks. JC Clayton
then hit a pitch through the left side of the infield to bring in Messerschmidt and tie the game at 1-1. With the hit, Clayton lengthened her hitting streak to seven games.
With the game tied, BYU fumbled on defense with one runner on and two outs when Messerschmidt and Clayton collided in an attempt to catch a pop fly. The UVU runners advanced to second and third on the error, but Hannah Howell
promptly followed with her third strikeout of the game to end the inning.
With runners in scoring position once again for UVU, Howell delivered her second two-out strikeout of the game to Kristin Jachim, preserving the score in favor of the Cougars.
Howell earned her 17th win of the season, giving up only one run with five strikeouts.
Clayton went 2 for 3 in the game while Manuma went 1 for 3 with a home run and two RBI on the night.
BYU faces UVU at Wolverine Field in Orem starting at 5 p.m. MT on Wednesday. The game will be broadcast live on BYU Radio.