HENDERSON, Nev. – Ashlee Robinson led BYU to a 5-4 victory over Portland State before the Cougars dropped the second game 8-0 to Chattanooga.
“Our effort today was not worthy of a BYU uniform,” BYU head coach Gordon Eakin said. “If we are going to rebound tomorrow, we need to have some heart."
BYU (4-4) and Portland State (2-4) battled back in forth in yet another close game between the two schools. The contest with Chattanooga (1-5) was the first ever meeting between the two schools.
Robinson batted .500 on the day with three doubles and two RBIs. Ashley Thompson added 3 for 4 hitting with two runs and an RBI.
Thompson started the game retiring the first three batters and striking out two. With runners on first and third with two outs in the bottom of the first, Thompson singled to centerfield to bring McKenzie St. Clair home and give BYU the 1-0 lead.
Portland State put their first three batters on in the top of the second, but Thompson was able to retire the next three batters to end the threat. Robinson doubled, followed by singles from Lauren Bell and Lacey Millett-Hofstedt to load the bases in the bottom of the frame, but the Vikings retired the next three batters to keep the score at 1-0 heading to the third.
In the top of the fifth, the Vikings loaded the bases after a couple of errors by the Cougars and were able to score two unearned on a walk and a passed ball to take a 2-1 lead. BYU answered with a two out rally in the bottom of the inning. Katie Manuma and Thompson drew walks and Sydney Broderick singled up the middle to tie the game. Robinson then doubled to bring around one more and give the Cougars a 3-2 lead.
With two outs in the top of the sixth, Portland State hit a two-run homer off the top of the fence in right-centerfield to retake the one run lead. BYU put a runner on second in the bottom of the frame but St. Clair’s drive to right field was caught on the warning track.
In the bottom of the seventh, Manuma walked to start things off and Thompson singled to put runners on first and second. Robinson came up and hit a double down the left-field line to score Manuma and tie the game at four. Megan Arnold then came in to pinch hit and hit a hard ground ball that allowed Thompson to score from third giving BYU the 5-4 victory. Manuma was credited with the win after retiring the last two batters in the top of the seventh.
Chattanooga struck first in the second game, putting runners on first and second with consecutive walks and scoring on a single up the middle to give them the 1-0 lead. McKenna Bull was able to get out of a bases loaded jam and get her team back up to bat.
In the second inning the Mocs threatened again loading the bases with one out, but yet again Bull retired the next three batters to leave the runners stranded.
Chattanooga added two more runs in the third inning to take a 3-0 lead heading into the fourth. In the bottom of the fifth inning the Mocs scored five runs to close out the game.
BYU wraps up the Easton Desert Classic tomorrow with games against Nevada at 11:15 a.m. PST and Minnesota at 1:30 p.m. PST.