Sophomore pitcher McKenna Bull powered BYU softball to a 2-0 win over New Mexico as it split its two games in the Kajikawa Classic on Friday.
The Cougars (2-2) beat the Lobos (1-1) in the morning game while falling to California (1-0), 12-4, in the afternoon game.
"There were positives and negatives again today," BYU head coach Gordon Eakin said." We played a tough New Mexico team in the first game. We were able to get some timely hitting in the fifth inning and pulled out the win."
Bull (2-0) turned in another solid outing for BYU, going the distance with a complete-game shutout, including nine strikeouts, while only allowing four hits and two walks. The shutout is her second career seven-inning shutout and third overall.
"In the Cal game, they just outplayed us in every area," Eakin said. "We’ll learn from today’s game and improve for tomorrow."
Broderick led the Cougars from the plate going 3-for-4 on the day with two RBIs, two walks and a double.
The early game was deadlocked in a 0-0 tie thanks to Bull’s effort from the circle. The Cougars had chances to score but left three runners on base in the third inning.
The team continued to battle, eventually breaking the tie in the fifth inning. Turning out to be the difference makers in the game, Broderick and Thompson each came through with an RBI in the frame. The designated hitter Thompson singled to right field, allowing O’Connor to advance from first to third while scoring Bell from second. Broderick followed with a base hit up the middle, driving in O’Connor for the RBI and the final score of the game.
The Cougars held the 2-0 lead the rest of the game as Bull struck out three more batters in the final two innings while not allowing any Lobos to reach base.
The second game of the day began with BYU taking the lead in the top of the first, scoring three runs after advancing on illegal pitches.
Cal then countered in the bottom of the frame with a one-out grand slam as Danielle Henderson took the first pitch from Paulson out to left field.
With the score 4-3, BYU loaded the bases. Bell reached base on a fielder’s choice and then advanced to second on O’Connor’s walk. Thompson then drew a base on balls as well, loading the bases with two outs in the process. Broderick then drew the RBI walk before Merrell struck out swinging for the third out.
Heading into the bottom of the second, the Golden Bears broke the 4-4 tie with a two-run homer with no outs. They struck again with a single through the left side four batters later, advancing a runner to third while scoring one.
Another run came in as Kobie Pettis reached on an error. With the game 8-4 in favor of Cal, the Cougars gave up two unearned runs before getting out of the inning, 10-4. The Bears held BYU scoreless for the next three innings while tacking on one run each in the fourth and fifth innings, resulting in the game being called per the eight-run rule.
The Cougars face Cal Poly in their last game of the Kajikawa Classic on Saturday at 9:15 a.m. Updates will be available on Twitter on the @BYUCougars account.
McKay Perry is the sports information director for BYU softball and an assistant sports information director for BYU football. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org