Cougars defeat LMU 4-1 to sweep WCC series
LOS ANGELES — BYU swept Loyola Marymount in the opening series of West Coast Conference play with a 4-1 victory on Saturday at Page Stadium. The win gives the Cougars a 3-0 start in conference play.
“I thought it was a well-played game today by our guys,” said BYU head coach Mike Littlewood. “This team is resilient. They believed in themselves when things were tough to start the season. Everyone contributed this weekend and it was definitely another team win today.”
LMU (7-10, 0-3) scored first in the bottom of the third to take an early 1-0 lead, but BYU (6-11, 3-0) responded with a run of its own in the top of the fifth to tie the game at 1-1. Cole Gambill led off the inning with a walk and advanced to third on a single by Freddy Achecar. He then scored on a sacrifice bunt by Peyton Cole to first base to tie the game.
BYU took the lead for good in the sixth inning with two runs off two hits and an error by the Lions. Mitch McIntyer singled to center to begin the inning. With one out, Jacob Wilk also singled up the middle and McIntyer scored on a throwing error to make the score 2-1. Gambill then grounded out to first base scoring Wilk for a 3-1 lead.
Starting pitcher Jack Sterner went four and a third innings, holding LMU to just two hits and a run before handing the ball over to lefthander Cy Nielsen who went one and a third with four strikeouts to get the win. Bryce Robison picked up the save with three and a third innings of no-hit baseball with four strikeouts.
The Cougars tacked on an insurance run in the top of the eighth with a one-out home run by Cowden over the right-center wall to finish off the scoring 4-1. BYU scored four runs on seven hits, while LMU scored one run on just two hits.
- McIntyre: 2-4, 1 run
- Gelalich: 2-3
- Cowden: 1-4, 1 RBI, 1 HR
- Sterner: 4.1 IP, 2 hits, 2 K, 1 ER
- Nielson: 1.1 IP, 0 hits, 4 K, win
- Robison: 3.1 IP, O hits, 4 K, save
“We are looking forward to finally playing at home after 17 games on the road,” said Littlewood. “I really love this team. They are starting to play the way that we as a coaching staff believed they were capable of playing.”
The Cougars are back in action on Tuesday, March 23 at 6:00 p.m. in the season home opener at Miller Park. BYU will take on rival UVU in the UCCU Crosstown Clash. BYU will also play host to WCC foe San Francisco in a three-game series scheduled for Thursday, Friday, Saturday, March 25-27. Ticket information for all four games can be found at BYUtickets.com.
All four games will be broadcast live on the BYUtv App as well as the BYU Sports Network—BYU Radio FM 107.7, BYUCougars.com and the BYU Cougars app.