PROVO, Utah – BYU softball fell behind early and never recovered, falling 9-2 to in-state opponent Weber State at Gail Miller Field Tuesday night.
“They showed up to play and we didn't,” BYU softball coach Gordon Eakin said. "I don’t mind getting beat but when you don’t show up and just expect to win, I have a hard time with that. Give Weber State credit, they showed up to play.”
The Cougars dropped to 34-10 on the season with the Wildcats improving to 32-17.
Coco Tauali’i led BYU with a two-run homer for her ninth dinger of the season, but Tauli’i’s runs were the only runs the Cougars could muster all night.
Weber State struck early and often, scoring four runs in the second inning that included a deep shot to right-center field that gave the Wildcats a 4-0 lead. BYU starter McKenna Bull was then substituted in favor of Arianna Paulson.
After Weber State added another run in the third to go up 5-0, the Cougars attempted to rally with Gordy Bravo and Lauren Bell reaching base with only one out. However, the Wildcats retired the next two batters to end the threat.
Weber State added four more runs to blow the game open with a 9-0 lead in the top of the fourth. BYU responded with two runs of its own in the bottom half of the fourth. With two outs, McKenzie St. Clair doubled to left-center field and was followed by Tauali’i’s two-run shot over the wall in centerfield.
The Cougars again looked ready for a rally in the fifth inning when Bravo and Megan Arnold reached base. After a base on balls by Ashley Thompson, the next two BYU batters hit two routine pop-ups that ended the inning, leaving bases juiced.
BYU loaded the bases in a last attempt with two outs in the seventh inning, but Weber State was able to get St. Clair to fly out to the shortstop to secure the 9-2 victory.
Bull (30-7) took the loss for the Cougars pitching 1.2 innings and giving up four runs on three hits. Madison Merrell pitched in relief of Paulson in the fourth inning, only giving up three hits while striking out three in 2.1 innings of work.
BYU will play again later this week on Friday at Santa Clara. A link for live stats for the game can be found on the softball page.