LAS VEGAS – Caitlyn Larsen's 4 RBI and two-run home run pushed BYU softball to a 9-1 win over Hawai’i in the first game of the DeMarini Classic on Thursday night.
"We played well in all three facets of the game: pitching, defense and offense," BYU head coach Gordon Eakin said. "It was a nice team effort and a great way to start the tournament."
BYU improves to 4-2 after having 13 hits to Hawai’i’s (4-3) seven.
McKenna Bull pitched a strong game from the circle for all seven innings, throwing nine strikeouts and just four walks. She faced bases loaded in two straight innings but avoided giving up a run in that stretch, givin up only one earned.
After Hawai’i struck first with one run in the bottom of the first, BYU scored two runs in the top of the second. Larsen singled to left field to bring in both Merrell and Ashley Thompson, taking the 2-1 lead.
A bunt from Larsen advanced McKenzie St. Clair to third base from second, and an error by the Warriors gave St. Clair the chance to run home and extend the Cougars’ lead, 4-1.
Strid came in to pinch hit in the top of the sixth. On the second pitch, she hit a two-run home run over the right-field fence, making it 6-1 over Hawai’i. In the next inning, Larsen hit a two-run homer of her own to give the Cougars two more runs, 9-1, which would be the final score.
The Cougars return to action in the DeMarini Classic on Friday in a doubleheader against Grand Canyon and Boise State at 9 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. PST, respectively. Live stats will be available on the schedule page.