LAS VEGAS — Jessica Fitu highlighted a strong softball effort by BYU on Saturday, going 3-for-5 with four RBIs in a 14-8 victory over UNLV in Las Vegas.
Fitu put the Cougars on top in the third with a two-out single, scoring Andrea Ramirez to make the score 3-1. The RBI was Fitu's 42nd of the season. Fitu would later tally her fifth RBI of the day, moving her into third place in the Mountain West Conference behind teammates Ramirez and Angeline Quiocho.
Picking up her 28th win of the season, Paige Affleck found a way to minimize the damage in the bottom of the fourth by retiring two Rebels with the bases loaded and, in the process, recording her fifth strikeout of the game. She finished the game with eight Ks.
Freshman shortstop J.C. Clayton was the sparkplug in the fifth inning for the Cougars, starting a four-run inning with a leadoff walk. Clayton was 3-for-5 on the day, with a triple and three runs. Following an RBI single by Fitu, Amanda Kellum put the Cougars on top for good, hitting a three-run, bases-clearing double in the same frame to lengthen the lead to 7-2.
Reigning Mountain West Conference player of the week Kristin Delahoussaye tacked on an insurance run for Cougars in the sixth, belting a solo home run, her fifth of the season. Quiocho followed suite in the seventh by belting her 26th home run of the season. With the shot, Quiocho recorded her sixth home run and 18th RBI of the week.
The Cougars return to action Monday at 3 p.m. against Utah State in Logan.
SAN DIEGO STATE 1, UTAH 0: At San Diego, Utah senior right-hander Ashley Smuda gave up only one sixth-inning run in her 13th complete game of the season, but the Utes were defeated 1-0 by San Diego State on Saturday in a Mountain West Conference game at SDSU Softball Stadium.
In six impressive innings in the circle for the Utes, Smuda allowed just one run on only three hits while striking out four and walking one SDSU hitter. With the hard-luck loss, Smuda's record fell to 19-14 this season.
Utah (24-28, 4-10 MWC) outhit San Diego State, 4-3. The Utes got hits from four different players.
Utah fell to 7-3 this season in one-run games.
The Utes conclude the non-conference portion of their 2010 regular season with a doubleheader Tuesday at Utah Valley. First pitch from Orem will be at 2:30 p.m.
UTAH VALLEY 6, NORTHERN COLORADO 4 (1st game); UTAH VALLEY 13, NORTHERN COLORADO 5 (2nd game): At Greeley, Colo., despite taking 6-4 and 13-5 victories over Northern Colorado on Saturday afternoon, the Utah Valley University team fell out of contention for the Pacific Coast Softball Conference crown.
The Wolverines (27-24, 13-5) trailed Portland State in the standings heading into Saturday's action and needed Seattle U. to upset the Vikings, but it didn't happen. PSU beat the Redhawks twice to lock up the league championship.
Utah Valley will conclude league play today when the Wolverines take on UNC in a doubleheader beginning at noon.
In Game 1 on Saturday, the Wolverines trailed 4-0 after three innings, but posted a six-spot in the top of the fourth, and UVU starter Kyli Flanary made them stand.
In the decisive frame, Cherylyn McGraw and Samantha Telarroja belted two-run homers, Jessica Anderson had an RBI double and Charlee Cisneros had an RBI single.
The Wolverines finished with 11 hits and McGraw and Telarroja had two hits each.
Flanary picked up her 11th win of the year despite allowing 11 hits and four runs — all earned — in the complete game.
In Saturday's Game 2, Shaylyn Varney, Amber Sackett, Megan Gardner and Anderson all had three hits each in the Wolverines' 16-hit attack.
Anderson had two doubles, a homer and drove in five runs, while Varney had a double and a homer and two RBIs, and Amanda Perez had a two run homer.
Sackett, who had a double and triple, drove in two runs.
Jessica Martin picked up her eighth win of the season by allowing four runs (two earned) in 41/3 innings.
The Wolverines broke the game open with six runs in the sixth. Varney belted a two-run homer, Perez delivered a solo homer, and Anderson had a three-run double.
SLCC 8, NORTH IDAHO 0 (1st game); SLCC 10, NORTH IDAHO 2 (2nd game): At Taylorsville, the top-ranked Salt Lake Community College Bruins concluded their regular season undefeated at home after two wins against North Idaho on Saturday. Salt Lake won both games in five innings, winning by scores of 8-0 and 10-2.
The Bruins are 56-3 overall and have clinched the SWAC title with a record of 44-3.
Sarah Clark threw a two-hit shutout in Game 1 while the SLCC bats collected 15 team hits. Krystin Jachim was 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a double. Cyd Allen was 3-for-3 while Erika James hit an RBI triple.
Once again the SLCC bats were hot with another 15 hits in the final game of the series. Jordyn McDonald got her 27th win of the season, allowing two earned runs. Erika James finished 3-for-4 with two RBIs, Katelyn Elliott was 2-for-2 with two doubles and McDonald had two hits with two RBIs.
No. 1 Salt Lake (56-3, 44-3 SWAC) will now host the Region 18 tournament beginning on Thursday, May 13, at Bruin Field. The No. 1-seeded Bruins will face the winner of the North Idaho-Snow College game.