Sluggers back Paulson’s gem in 10-1 win over Hawai’i
LAS VEGAS – Well-rounded play in all aspects of the game gave BYU softball a 10-1 win over Hawai’i in five innings on the first day of the Marucci Desert Classic.
“We played a complete game tonight from start to finish — offensive, defensively and from the circle,” BYU head coach Gordon Eakin said.
Eight different Cougars crossed the plate against the Rainbow Wahine on 13 hits. Briielle Breland, Bridget Fleener and Allie Hancock all hit home runs, with Breland and Fleener driving in three and two runs, respectively. Rylee Jensen also brought in two runs on two hits.
Arissa Paulson threw six strikeouts from the circle and allowed just one run.
“Arissa pitched a great game tonight against a very good hitting team,” Eakin said. “She set the tone for us tonight.”
Hawai’i (0-1, 0-0 Big West) opened its season against the Cougars in the loss.
BYU (2-4, 0-0 West Coast Conference) got on the board first, scoring two runs in the first two innings. Breland crushed the ball over the centerfield fence in the first, bringing Jensen home as well for an early 2-0 lead.
Fleener and Hancock hit back-to-back home runs in the second inning, the second of the season for each of them. Fleener homered to right center while Hancock smashed one down the left field line for a 4-0 Cougar advantage.
In the third inning, Jensen ripped a double to left center with two outs, allowing Brooke Vander Heide and Hancock to come across. Jensen scored a second time later that inning as Breland singled to center field for a 7-0 advantage.
Three singles in the fifth brought in three more runs. Alexa Strid first singled to right field as Lexi Tarrow scored. Then Libby Sugg scored as Caitlyn Alldredge singled to left field. Fleener singled through the left side while Strid scored for the Cougars’ final and 10th run.
The Cougars held the Rainbow Wahine scoreless until the bottom of the final inning.
The Marucci Desert Classic continues for BYU on Friday against FIU at 11:15 a.m. PT and New Mexico at 1:30 p.m. PT. Links to live stats will be available on the softball schedule page and the full tournament schedule can be found on the Marucci Desert Classic website.
BYU softball was picked tied for first in conference as voted on by the West Coast Conference coaches, the league…