Anonymous | Posted: 26 May 2006 | Updated: 8 Nov 2020

Hiestand, Wells Put BYU To Championship Day

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LAS VEGAS -- Jeff Hiestand cycled and Patrick Wells threw a complete game to propel BYU into the championship day of the Mountain West Conference with a 10-4 victory Friday over UNLV.

That victory gives BYU a rematch against TCU at 3 p.m., MDT, on Saturday. Should the Cougars win twice against the Horned Frogs, BYU would claim the automatic berth for the NCAA Post-season Tournament as well as the MWC title.

To get to the rematch with TCU again in the MWC Tourney, BYU had to first get through the survivor bracket by beating UNLV on its home field.

Hiestand's cycle came off a first-inning homer, a third-inning double, singles in the fourth and sixth innings and an eighth-inning triple. It marked the first cycle for BYU since Brandon Taylor turned the feat twice last season.

"He is more of the unlikely guys to hit for a cycle," said BYU Coach Vance Law. "He got the right carom off the outfield wall for his triple. That's the fastest I've seen him move around second, he wanted it pretty bad."

Wells threw 132 pitches in his first complete game of the season to tie him for the team lead seven wins. He retired the Rebels in order in the third and sixth innings and scattered seven hits in working out of a couple jams.

"To hold as good of a team as UNLV is with the windy conditions tonight to four runs is remarkable," said Law. "He jammed a number of guys."

Wells' snap throw to first went awry, advancing CJ Lang who later scored off a single from Chris Bonnell up the middle to take a 1-0 first inning lead.

The Cougars tied the game in the first when Seth Johnson beat out an infield chopper off the pitching glove of lefty Chris Saddoris. Johnson advanced to second on a balk and then scored on Marcos Villezcas' single to right field.

"Villezcas' hit was critical," said Law, who noted the senior shortstop's second-inning two-run single gave the Cougars a needed cushion on the game-winning RBI.

Villezcas advanced to second on a bad throw from right field on the first-inning play. Then Hiestand hit his wind-aided home run, number 13 for the year, to center field to bring in Villezcas and a 3-1 lead.

UNLV's Ryan Bird doubled the next inning and advance to third on a flyout again to rightfield. He was caught off guard when Albert Zerga was jammed by Wells into an infield pop which Hiestand turned into a fielder's choice. Hiestand alertly saw Bird too far off third and ran him into a force out at home.

In the third, Stetson Banks hit a 3-2 pitch on the outside of the plate and stroked a double down the rightfield line, putting Casey Nelson at third as well with one out. Villezcas hit a two-run, two-out single to right-center to put BYU up, 5-1.

Hiestand led off the fourth with a wind-aided double blown fair down the leftfield line and that chased Saddoris from the mound in favor of Matt Wagner. Kasey Ko placed a single to rightfield to score Hiestand. Nelson drew a walk and scored off Banks single after the Rebels turned a double play which scored Ko as BYU took an 8-1 lead.

Zach Borba gave UNLV its second run of the game in the fourth with a wind-aided homer.

Saylor, who got his first hit in two days, scored on a sac-fly by Ko in the fourth after advancing to third on a hit and run from Hiestand to recoup the Rebel run and give BYU a 9-2 lead. The senior duo combined again in the sixth when Saylor hit a two-out double and scored off Hiestand's fourth hit of the night to improve the score to 10-2 That chased Wagner from the game in favor of Koji Pupo on the mound.

Number nine batter Xavier Scruggs knocked a two-out, two-run homer in the seventh to pull the Rebels within six at 10-4 in the seventh. With one on, Wells walked his first batter of the game.

Sub third baseman Dan Vargas, who had made a key out in the sixth, turned a slick third-first-third double play to close the top eighth. Vargas fielded Ryan Bird's grounder which drew Borba off second, but the Cougar freshman threw quickly to first and got a delayed call when UNLV's senior pulled his hand off the bag.

Hiestand hit for the cycle with a triple in the eighth when he legged out a left-center drive with two outs.

Adrian Molina went into centerfield, Kent Walton to left and Johnson to right with Saylor moving to first base to give BYU its best defensive lineup in the ninth. That move paid off as Saylor scooped a bounce throw for out number one, Molina leaped for a catch on the second out and Johnson caught the final out.

The Cougars improve to a 33-27 record, while UNLV falls to 29-30.

"TCU will be a daunting challenge with the pitching it has remaining, but it can be done," said Law in reference to BYU losing a pair to UNLV on championship day last year in Salt Lake City.

Saturday's games will be broadcast live locally by KOVO Radio (960 AM) at 3 and 7 p.m. PDT.



May 26, 2006 at Las Vegas, Nev. (Earl E. Wilson)

UNLV 4 (29-30)



KOWALSKI, Ryan cf........ 4 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0

LANG, CJ 2b.............. 4 1 1 0 1 0 2 2 3

SMITH, Keith dh.......... 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2

BONNELL, Chris 1b........ 4 0 1 1 0 1 10 2 0

BORBA, Zach lf........... 4 1 2 1 0 1 2 0 1

BIRD, Ryan rf............ 4 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0

CRUZ, Mike ss............ 4 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 0

ZEREGA, Albert c......... 3 1 1 0 1 0 4 0 0

SCRUGGS, Xavier 3b....... 3 1 1 2 1 0 1 3 1

SADDORIS, Chris p........ 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

WAGNER, Matt p.......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0

PUPO, Koji p............ 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

BROCK, Eric p........... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Totals................... 34 4 7 4 3 2 24 12 7

BYU 10 (33-27)



JOHNSON, Seth lf/rf...... 5 1 2 0 0 1 1 0 2

VILLEZCAS, Marcos ss..... 5 1 2 3 0 0 0 5 0

SAYLOR, Ben rf/1b........ 5 2 2 0 0 1 5 0 1

HIESTAND, Jeff 1b........ 5 2 5 3 0 0 9 1 0

MOLINA, Adrian cf....... 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0

KO, Kasey dh............. 4 1 1 2 0 2 0 0 2

WALTON, Kent cf/lf....... 3 1 1 0 1 0 3 0 0

CROSBY, Blake 3b......... 3 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0

VARGAS, Daniel 3b....... 1 0 1 0 0 0 2 2 0

NELSON, Casey c.......... 4 1 2 0 0 0 3 1 0

BANKS, Stetson 2b........ 4 1 2 1 0 0 2 2 1

WELLS, Patrick p......... 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0

Totals................... 39 10 19 9 1 4 27 12 7

Score by Innings R H E


UNLV................ 100 100 200 - 4 7 1

BYU................. 323 101 00X - 10 19 2


E - BIRD(6); BANKS(11); WELLS(5). DP - UNLV 1; BYU 1. LOB - UNLV 7; BYU 7.

2B - BORBA(11); BIRD(8); SAYLOR(17); HIESTAND(15); WALTON(13); BANKS(7). 3B


KO(3). SB - VARGAS(4).



SADDORIS, Chris..... 2.0 7 6 6 0 1 13 13

WAGNER, Matt........ 3.2 9 4 4 1 0 16 18

PUPO, Koji.......... 0.1 2 0 0 0 0 3 3

BROCK, Eric......... 2.0 1 0 0 0 3 7 7



WELLS, Patrick...... 9.0 7 4 3 3 2 34 38

Win - WELLS (7-6). Loss - SADDORIS (6-8). Save - None.


Umpires - HP: Tom Chandler 1B: Marc Lewis 2B: Ray Belfiore 3B: John Cortez

Start: 7:00 pm Time: 2:35 Attendance: 361

Game notes:


SADDORIS faced 1 batter in the 3rd.

PUPO faced 2 batters in the 7th.

UNLV at BYU - Play-by-Play

May 26, 2006 at Las Vegas, Nev. (Earl E. Wilson)

Score by Innings R H E


UNLV................ 100 100 200 - 4 7 1

BYU................. 323 101 00X - 10 19 2


UNLV starters: 12/cf KOWALSKI; 5/2b LANG; 14/dh SMITH; 11/1b BONNELL; 6/lf

BORBA; 34/rf BIRD; 1/ss CRUZ; 9/c ZEREGA; 16/3b SCRUGGS; 31/p SADDORIS;

BYU starters: 26/lf JOHNSON, S.; 10/ss VILLEZCAS; 25/rf SAYLOR; 32/1b HIESTAND;

33/dh KO; 9/cf WALTON; 30/3b CROSBY; 8/c NELSON; 3/2b BANKS; 4/p WELLS;

UNLV 1st - KOWALSKI grounded out to 2b. LANG singled to center field.

SMITH flied out to rf. LANG advanced to second on a throwing error by p.

BONNELL singled to center field, RBI; LANG scored, unearned. BORBA struck out.

1 run, 2 hits, 1 error, 1 LOB.

BYU 1st - JOHNSON, S. singled to third base. JOHNSON, S. advanced to

second on a balk. VILLEZCAS singled, advanced to second on a throwing error by

rf, RBI; JOHNSON, S. scored. SAYLOR flied out to cf; VILLEZCAS advanced to

third. HIESTAND homered to left field, 2 RBI; VILLEZCAS scored. KO struck out

looking. WALTON grounded out to 3b. 3 runs, 3 hits, 1 error, 0 LOB.

UNLV 2nd - BIRD doubled to right field. CRUZ flied out to rf; BIRD

advanced to third. ZEREGA reached on a fielder's choice; BIRD out at home 1b to

c. SCRUGGS flied out to rf. 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

BYU 2nd - CROSBY flied out to lf. NELSON singled to right field. BANKS

doubled to right field; NELSON advanced to third. JOHNSON, S. grounded out to

3b. VILLEZCAS singled to center field, 2 RBI; BANKS scored; NELSON scored.

SAYLOR reached on a fielder's choice; VILLEZCAS out at second 2b unassisted.

2 runs, 3 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

UNLV 3rd - KOWALSKI grounded out to ss. LANG grounded out to ss. SMITH

flied out to cf. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

BYU 3rd - HIESTAND doubled to left field. WAGNER to p for SADDORIS. KO

singled through the right side, RBI; HIESTAND scored. WALTON walked; KO

advanced to second. CROSBY singled through the right side; WALTON advanced to

second; KO advanced to third. NELSON grounded into double play ss to 2b to 1b;

CROSBY out on the play; WALTON advanced to third; KO scored. BANKS singled to

center field, RBI; WALTON scored. JOHNSON, S. singled; BANKS advanced to

second, out at third 1b to 3b. 3 runs, 5 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

UNLV 4th - BONNELL grounded out to p. BORBA homered to center field,

RBI. BIRD flied out to rf. CRUZ lined out to 3b. 1 run, 1 hit, 0 errors, 0


BYU 4th - VILLEZCAS out at first 1b to p. SAYLOR singled to center

field. HIESTAND singled to center field; SAYLOR advanced to third. KO flied out

to cf, SAC, RBI; HIESTAND out at second p to ss; SAYLOR scored. 1 run, 2

hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

UNLV 5th - ZEREGA grounded out to ss. SCRUGGS lined out to 2b. KOWALSKI

reached on a throwing error by 2b. LANG flied out to cf. 0 runs, 0 hits, 1

error, 1 LOB.

BYU 5th - WALTON grounded out to ss. CROSBY grounded out to 3b. NELSON

singled to center field. BANKS lined out to ss. 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 1


UNLV 6th - VARGAS to 3b for CROSBY. SMITH lined out to 3b. BONNELL

struck out. BORBA grounded out to 2b. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

BYU 6th - JOHNSON, S. out at first p to ss to 1b. VILLEZCAS grounded out

to 2b. SAYLOR doubled to right field. HIESTAND singled to center field, RBI;

SAYLOR scored. PUPO to p for WAGNER. KO grounded out to 1b unassisted. 1

run, 2 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

UNLV 7th - BIRD grounded out to ss. CRUZ flied out to cf. ZEREGA singled

to right field. SCRUGGS homered, 2 RBI; ZEREGA scored. KOWALSKI hit by pitch.

LANG walked; KOWALSKI advanced to second. SMITH reached on a fielder's choice;

LANG out at second ss to 2b. 2 runs, 2 hits, 0 errors, 2 LOB.

BYU 7th - WALTON doubled to right field. VARGAS singled through the left

side; WALTON advanced to third. BROCK to p for PUPO. NELSON popped up to 1b.

BANKS fouled out to 1b. VARGAS stole second. JOHNSON, S. struck out. 0 runs,

2 hits, 0 errors, 2 LOB.

UNLV 8th - BONNELL grounded out to c. BORBA doubled to center field.

BIRD grounded into double play 3b to 1b; BORBA out on the play. 0 runs, 1

hit, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

BYU 8th - VILLEZCAS flied out to lf. SAYLOR struck out. HIESTAND tripled

to center field. KO struck out. 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

UNLV 9th - JOHNSON, S. to rf. SAYLOR to 1b. MOLINA to cf for HIESTAND.

WALTON to lf. CRUZ grounded out to 3b. ZEREGA walked. SCRUGGS walked; ZEREGA

advanced to second. KOWALSKI flied out to cf. LANG flied out to rf. 0 runs,

0 hits, 0 errors, 2 LOB.

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