Late Call Hands Loss to Cougars
SAN DIEGO – In a back-and-forth ballgame that ended in a controversial call, No. 24 BYU lost 6-5 at San Diego in 10 innings on Friday at Fowler Park.
With the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the 10th, a low throw from third to home was dropped and then handled by BYU catcher Noah Hill for the force out, but the umpire ruled the runner safe for the game-winning run.
“It’s a tough way to lose after giving everything we had all night,” BYU head coach Mike Littlewood said. “We’ve got to get our rest and show up tomorrow ready to play.”
- With the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the 10th, a bobbled ball at home was handled for a force out, but the umpire ruled the runner safe to win the game for the Toreros
- After going the first 34 innings of the season without earning an earned run, BYU pitcher Easton Walker’s streak finally came to an end on a sac fly in the bottom of the third inning. Walker has been leading the nation with a 0.00 ERA
- Noah Hill doubled his previous career high in RBIs with four on the night
- Noah Hill: 2-4, 2B, 4 RBI
- Jackson Cluff: 1-4, 2B, 2 R, BB
- Easton Walker: 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 0 BB, 4 K
San Diego went up 1-0 in the bottom of the third, giving BYU starting pitcher Easton Walker his first earned run of the season. Walker led the NCAA with a 0.00 ERA coming into the game, going 34 innings this year without allowing an earned run.
In the top of the fourth, Brock Hale doubled before Jackson Cluff drew a walk to start the inning for BYU. Noah Hill brought the runners home with a double down the left field line to give the Cougars the lead.
The margin was short-lived, however, as the Toreros scratched across two runs of their own on a sac fly and a single in the bottom of the inning to retake the lead, 3-2.
Each team scored two runs apiece again two innings later in the sixth. For BYU, it was a repeat of the fourth inning, with Hale and Cluff both reaching on a hit by pitch and a double, respectively, before Hill against brought both runners in with a single up the middle.
With San Diego up a run at 5-4 after six, the Cougars tied the game with clutch pinch hitting, first by Keaton Kringlen drawing a walk, then with Abraham Valdez hitting a two-out double to score the runner.
The two teams remained scoreless until the 10th when San Diego scored the final run.
Walker went five innings for BYU in the no decision, allowing two earned runs, no walks and totaling four strikeouts. Despite the earned runs, the sophomore will likely still be first or second in the nation in ERA after this weekend’s games.
Hill set a career high with four RBIs on a single and a double. Cluff and Hale each finished with two runs and a double apiece for the Cougars.
BYU and San Diego close the series on Saturday, April 6, at 1 p.m. PT with the game shown on TheW.tv and aired on ESPN 960.
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