BYU Closes Out Week with 8-3 Win Over Oral Roberts
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – The BYU baseball team ended its week on a high note Saturday, defeating Oral Roberts 8-3 in the Cougars’ third and final game at the Kleberg Bank Classic at Whataburger Field.
“The guys fought hard today,” BYU head coach Mike Littlewood said. “Drew (Zimmerman) didn’t have his best stuff, but he battled for us for four innings and Justin (Sterner) was lights out coming out of the pen. Overall, I’m very happy about our offensive approach and the way we are putting together at-bats up and down the lineup.”
- BYU scored the go-ahead run in the sixth inning, then added four more to pull away in the seventh
- Sophomore right-hander Justin Sterner recorded the first win of his career in five innings of relief
- Five different pitchers have earned BYU’s five wins so far this year
- The Cougars swept their three games this week at Corpus Christi, totaling double-digit hits in each game and holding every opponent to three runs or fewer
- Jackson Cluff: 2-3, HR, 3 R, 3 RBI, BB, SB
- Casey Jacobsen: 2-5, 2 RBI
- Justin Sterner: W (1-0), 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 6 K
With the victory, BYU improved its record to 5-2. Sophomore right-hander Justin Sterner earned his first career win, pitching shutout ball in five innings of relief, allowing just one hit and one walk with six strikeouts.
Sophomore second baseman Jackson Cluff racked up three RBIs, three runs, a walk, a stolen base and two hits, including the first home run of his career.
Oral Roberts (3-2) took the initial lead in the first inning on a solo home run, but BYU answered back in the second inning, tying the game on a Casey Jacobsen single up the middle to bring in Cluff.
In the third, BYU quickly loaded the bases with no outs, then took the lead on a sacrifice fly by Cluff to score Carson Matthews, then added another run by Jaren Hall thanks to a Golden Eagles’ error to make it 3-1.
This time it was Oral Roberts to answer, again tying the game on a two-run homer in the bottom of the fourth.
But BYU pulled ahead for good in the sixth with Cluff launching a home run to right field to lead off the inning. In the seventh frame, the Cougars added four more runs, first with an RBI-single by Cluff, then a free walk home on a balk for Brock Hale. Cluff added another on an error by ORU, then Keaton Kringlen scored easily on Jacobsen’s second single of the game.
The Cougars will next play a three-game series against the Lamar Cardinals in Beaumont, Texas, with the first contest set to begin at 6 p.m. CT on Thursday, Feb. 28. Each of the three games will be available to view live on the Lamar Athletics Facebook page or heard live on BYU Radio and ESPN 960.