LOS ANGELES – Behind three home runs, No. 22/23 BYU softball defeated Loyola Marymount in the first West Coast Conference game of the season, winning 8-0 in six innings in Los Angeles on Friday afternoon.
“It was a great team win and a great start to conference play," BYU head coach Gordon Eakin said. "It was a solid pitching performance and there was balanced hitting throughout the lineup. It was a good team win."
BYU (25-10, 1-0 WCC) out-hit Loyola Marymount (14-23, 0-1 WCC) 12-3 in the win. BYU reached double-digits in hits for the first time since picking up 10 against Utah last month. The 12 hits were the most since notching the same number against Detroit Mercy on March 3. This is also the first game this season that BYU has hit more than two home runs in a game, knocking three out of the park in the win. The last time the Cougars had three home runs in a game was a March matchup against Saint Louis in 2016.
McKenna Bull pitched the Cougars to this shutout win, her sixth shutout of the year. She tossed six strikeouts with no walks and allowed just three hits. On offense, Caitlyn Larsen Alldredge went 2 for 3 with two runs and two RBI while Ashley Thompson went 2 for 4 with two runs and two RBI. Both of them hit home runs in the win, with Briielle Breland hitting the third homer of the day on 2 of 3 hitting.
After a scoreless first inning, the Cougars got runs on the board in the top of the second. Following a double from Alldredge, Breland hit a bomb over left field to take the 2-0 lead.
The top of the third saw more runs come in for BYU. With Lexi Tarrow on second, Thompson doubled to right center, bringing in the third run of the game. A couple of at bats later, Alldredge hit a home run dead center to extend the lead to 5-0.
In the top of the fifth, Thompson led off with another homer to center, her sixth of the year. Breland tripled to right center, but was left stranded. BYU’s one run pushed the lead to 6-0 after five innings.
Rylee Jensen led off with a single to get the offense started right in the top of the sixth. With Jensen on second and Tarrow on first, Libby Sugg hit a single up the middle to score Jensen. In the next at bat, the Lions’ shortstop committed an error, allowing Tarrow to reach home, making it 8-0 after the frame to force the run-rule victory. Bull and the defense never faced more than four LMU batters in an inning during the game.
BYU and LMU will play again tomorrow in a doubleheader starting at noon PDT. Live stats will be available on the BYU softball schedule page.