TEMPE, Ariz. – Libby Sugg went a perfect 5 for 5 through two games as No. 19 BYU softball fell to Nebraska and No. 25 Georgia 4-5 and 1-13, respectively, on the second day of the Kajikawa Classic on Friday.
Nebraska (1-1, 0-0 Big Ten) opened its season with a narrow victory over BYU (1-3, 0-0 West Coast Conference), 5-4, on an extra-inning walk-off. The Cougars hadn't lost to the Huskers since falling 2-0 at NCAA Regionals in 2016.
No. 25 Georgia (3-1, 0-0 SEC) came alive offensively in the sixth inning with seven runs for a 13-1 victory in the nightcap.
Despite coming back to take a 3-1 lead in the fifth inning, BYU fell 5-4 to Nebraska on a walk-off single in eight innings.
Five different Cougars had one hit apiece while Libby Sugg went a perfect 3 for 3 with one RBI.
The Huskers got on the board first early in the bottom of the first as Kaylan Jablonski doubled to left field and brought Tristen Edwards home for a 1-0 lead.
An offensive outburst in the top of the fifth allowed BYU to take the lead for the first time. After Sugg singled to left field, freshman Erin Miklus came in as a pinch runner and stole second. Freshman Bridget Fleener tripled to left field in her second at-bat as a Cougar, sending Miklus home to even the score, 1-1. Caitlyn Alldredge then singled up the middle and Ashley Godfrey crossed home plate to go up 2-1.
Sugg earned her third hit of the game with a single in the sixth inning as Rylee Jensen scored to extend the Cougars’ lead, 3-1.
Autumn Moffat came in to pitch midway through the seventh. Nebraska’s bats came alive with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, sending the game into extra innings. Madi Unzicker singled up the middle, allowing Taylor Otte to score. Jablonski then sprayed the ball down the right field line to bring Edwards home and tie it, 3-3. With the winning run on second base, the next Husker batter walked to load the bases. The Cougars forced the final out at second base with an assist from Alldredge at third to Briielle Breland.
Due to NCAA policy, each team began the extra inning with a runner on second base. Jensen later advanced to third on Lexi Tarrow's groundout to the pitcher. Sugg was intentionally walked for her fourth plate appearance. Alexa Strid singled to left field as Jensen scored her second run of the game, giving the Cougars a 4-3 advantage.
In the bottom of the eighth, a throwing error by the first baseman allowed Nebraska to score the tying run, 4-4. Four batters later, Edwards singled to right center for the game-winning run and BYU dropped the game 5-4.
In the bottom of the second, Georgia walked Sugg, who later advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt from Strid and then advanced to third on a wild pitch. Madison Merrell also walked before Alldredge singled to left field, bringing Sugg home for a 1-0 BYU lead.
The Bulldogs responded with four hits in the top of the third to take a 2-1 advantage. A double down the left line and a single to right field both sent one run in. Cougar pitcher Kerisa Viramontes answered by striking out the next two batters to close the inning.
After a scoreless third inning for BYU, Georgia hit back-to-back home runs in the fourth. Alyssa DiCarlo hit a three-run homer over the centerfield fence to go up 5-1. Olivia Sanchez came in to relieve Viramontes and then Alysen Febrey crushed a home run to right center for a 6-1 lead.
Moffat came in to pitch for the Cougars in the sixth. The Bulldogs scored seven runs on two homers, two singles and one double to seal the victory.
The Kajikawa Classic concludes for BYU on Saturday against Oregon State at 9:15 a.m. MT. Links to the live stats and the live stream will be available on the softball schedule page.
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