Cluff's Huge Day Helps Crush Toreros
SAN DIEGO – A big day at the plate by sophomore Jackson Cluff and the Cougars catapulted No. 24 BYU to a 17-4 win over San Diego on Saturday at Fowler Park.
Cluff reached base every time he stepped up, hitting a two-RBI double in the first and a grand slam in the second, earning an RBI on a walk in the fourth, hitting a two-RBI single in the fifth, walking in the sixth and hitting a single in the ninth. All told, the sophomore finished 4-for-4 with nine RBIs, three runs and two walks.
“I’m really proud of the guys for putting the tough loss Friday night behind them and coming out and getting a must-win today,” BYU head coach Mike Littlewood said.
- Jackson Cluff hit his first career grand slam and third career home run in the second inning. Added to two singles, a double and two walks, Cluff finished the game with nine RBIs, two off the BYU record
- The 17 runs are the most BYU has ever scored against San Diego and the highest total for the Cougars since scoring 23 against Portland in May 2017
- Four Cougars had at least three runs and four had multiple hits as BYU finished with a season-high 17 hits as a team
- Jackson Cluff: 4-4, 2B, HR (Grand Slam), 3 R, 2 BB, 9 RBI
- Austin Deming: 2-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, 5 RBI
- Justin Sterner: W (6-2), 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 K
With two swings in two innings, Cluff and the Cougars went up 6-0 on the Toreros. A single by Noah Hill and double by Brock Hale were followed by Cluff’s double down the left field line in the first inning.
In the second, Keaton Kringlen was hit by a pitch, Brian Hsu singled and Hill drew a walk to load the bases. With two outs and a 2-0 count, Cluff brought four runs in with a grand slam to right field.
San Diego scored one run in the third, but BYU piled on three more in the fourth with the top of the order again coming through. Hsu singled and Hill and Hale drew walks to again load the bases for Cluff, who drew a third-straight walk for BYU on a 3-2 count to score Hsu.
Austin Deming followed Cluff with a sacrifice fly before Mitch McIntyre’s single scored Hale and pushed the Cougar lead to 9-1.
Five more BYU runs came in the fifth on five hits, including a two-RBI single by Cluff, a two-RBI double by Deming and a single by McIntyre. A single from Casey Jacobsen in the sixth brought in a single run.
On a day of offense, sophomore Justin Sterner threw strong from the mound to hold down the Toreros and earn his team-high sixth win of the season. Sterner went 5.2 innings and allowed three runs and a walk with four strikeouts.
Deming tacked on a late two-run homer in the seventh, the first of his BYU career, to finish with a career-best five RBIs.
BYU will next go up against Utah in Provo on Tuesday, April 9, at 6 p.m. MT. The game will air on BYUtv Digital, BYU Radio and ESPN 960.