UVU and BYU split doubleheader Saturday, series

WOLVERINEGREENDOTCOM Jamie North's seventh-inning single drove home game one's winning run
WOLVERINEGREENDOTCOM
Jamie North's seventh-inning single drove home game one's winning run
WOLVERINEGREENDOTCOM

April 6, 2013

Game One Box Score

Game Two Box Score

Photo Gallery

OREM, Utah -- Utah Valley University and Brigham Young University battled to another doubleheader split Saturday, with UVU taking game one at Wolverine Field, 3-2, and BYU grabbing the second by the same score line.

With Saturday's split, the two crosstown, Pacific Coast Softball Conference rivals conclude this season's meetings at two games apiece.

Jamie North came through with a walk-off single in game one to lift the Wolverines (24-14, 7-5 PCSC) to the win, but the Cougars (16-20, 6-2 PCSC) picked up their second extra-inning win of the weekend in game two.

"We can't complain about a split, but in my mind we were in a really good position to take this entire series," said Wolverine head coach Rachel Hartgrove. "It just came down to little things, little mistakes that have been hurting us. We had an error that hurt us on Friday and another today. But BYU is always a good team. This is a good rivalry and to have four really close ballgames this weekend only speaks to that."

Utah Valley scored a single run in each of the last three innings as it held off BYU 3-2 in game one. The Cougars got on the board in the very first inning, getting an RBI double from Katie Manuma that scored JC Clayton from second. That 1-0 lead held all the way into the fifth inning when the Wolverine bats finally came alive. With Morgan Summers and Amanda Robinson retired to begin the frame, Brinkerhoff reached on an infield single. A walk to Krystin Jachim put runners on first and second for Debra Lovell. Having hit a walk-off home run less than 24 hours prior, Lovell delivered again -- this time lifting a flare down the left field line to plate Brinkerhoff and tie the score.

UVU would take the lead in the sixth after a solo homer from Jazmyne Cortinas, but it was BYU's turn at a comeback bid in the seventh. Coco Tauali'i led off the inning with a single up the middle to put the tying run on-base. Tiffany Mills then got back-to-back strikeouts, taking care of Ashlee Robinson and Clayton, and looked poised to seal a 2-1 victory.

But pinch-hitter Jenna Goar ran out an infield single in the next at-bat, bringing Gordy Bravo to the plate. Bravo, who hit a game-tying three run home run in the top the seventh of game two, again provided the tying run by singling into left field to bring home Hicken and make the score 2-2.

With runners now on the corners, Mills delivered an intentional pass to Manuma to load the bases, then escaped the jam by inducing a groundout to first base from Alexandra Hudson-Shamo.

Jachim led off in the bottom of the seventh with a single into right field. Kelli Fox entered the game to pinch-run, and moved up to second when Dynasty Lauvai worked a walk after a Lovell fly-out. The winning run now on second, North delivered the game-winning hit with a chopper up the middle. As the ball reached the outfield grass, Fox was able to round third and cruise home well in front of the throw to seal a 3-2 win.

Mills (11-8) earned the decision, going a complete-game seven innings and allowing two earned runs on seven hits. She struck out seven Cougars in her 11th win of the season.

UVU came up short in game two, as the contest went all the way to the 10th inning. With the score tied at 2-2 and the international tiebreaker in effect, BYU manufactured the go-ahead run when Manuma's groundout brought Carly Duckworth in to score from third. Duckworth opened the inning at second base, but was pushed to third by a Bravo sacrifice bunt.

Trailing 3-2, the Wolverines were able to advance base runner Megan Peay to third base on a sacrifice bunt from Cortinas. With the tying run sixty feet away, pinch-hitter Charlee Cisneros grounded out to third and Morgan Summers flew out to left to end the game and another comeback effort from UVU.

The contest was extended into extras in the bottom of the seventh when the Wolverines tacked on a do-or-die run. Trailing 2-1, UVU benefited from BYU pitcher Tori Almond's wild inning as the hurler walked both Jachim and Lovell to begin the inning. Ball-four to Lovell actually sailed to the backstop, allowing both Jachim to reach third safely and Lovell to cruise all the way into second. Facing Dynasty Lauvai, another pitch got away from Almond as Jachim scampered home to tie the game.

UVU looked to have possibly clinched another walk-off win in the same inning as Dara Kosanke -- pinch running for Lovell -- now stood at third with no one out. Lauvai went down swinging to bring North to the plate. Looking for her second game-winning hit, North hit a chopper towards second base. Running on contact was Kosanke and as the throw came home, she appeared to have just narrowly ducked the tag with a left foot sliding underneath the catcher's mitt. But the home plate umpire ruled Kosanke out on the bang-bang play and the game continued on into the fateful extra innings.

"Walking away with a split makes things a little bit difficult for us as far as conference standings go," added Hartgrove. "It would have been nice to walk away with three of the four, but we still have 12 games and this is a conference where anybody can beat anybody. BYU is still the team to beat and we'll need some help but we're not in a bad spot taking two from the league-favorites."

With a 2-2 split, UVU doubled its all-time win mark against BYU. Entering Friday, the Wolverines had just one win in program history against the Cougars and had lost 18 straight.

UVU takes a break from PCSC play next week with three non-conference games. The 14-game in-state stretch of schedule will come to an end as the Wolverines host Utah State and Idaho State in Orem on Tuesday and Wednesday before traveling to Logan Saturday for a rematch with the Aggies. From there, UVU hits the road for a four-game, conference series at San Diego beginning Apr. 20.