Four-run eighth-inning rally lifts BYU over Cal Poly, 6-2

Posted at 10:25 PM, Feb 20, 2020

Brigham Young snapped a 2-2 tie with four runs in the eighth inning, Austin Deming capping the rally with a three-run triple, en route to a 6-2 victory over Cal Poly in the opening game of a four-game non-conference baseball series Thursday night in Baggett Stadium.

Cal Poly scored the first run of the game on a bases-loaded walk in the fourth inning before the visiting Cougars scored twice in the seventh and four more in the eighth to earn the victory.

BYU improved to 3-2 while Cal Poly, four days after rallying to upset defending national champion and then-No. 1-ranked Vanderbilt 9-8 in Scottsdale, Ariz., fell to 2-3.

After scoring at least five runs in each of its three games in the MLB4 Tournament last weekend, Cal Poly has scored just twice in a pair of home games. Pepperdine held the Mustangs to four hits in a 9-2 win Tuesday while BYU allowed just six hits Thursday.

Cal Poly, which hit .252 in the tournament, has compiled a .152 mark in two home losses this week.

The Mustangs loaded the bases in the fourth on a bunt single by Elijah Greene, a BYU fielding error and a walk to Taison Corio. Cole Cabrera drew a walk to force in the unearned run.

BYU took the lead in the seventh on a two-run double down the left field line by Mitch McIntyre and Cal Poly tied the game in the bottom of the seventh as Bradlee Beesley reached second on a Cougar throwing error and came home on Tate Samuelson's RBI single through the right side.

Samuelson, who has led the Mustangs in home runs and RBIs each of the last two seasons, has seven RBIs and a .300 batting average through five games.

A bases-loaded force play at second base on a grounder by Hayden Leatham broke the 2-2 tie in the eighth and Deming followed with a three-run triple over the head of Beesley in center field to break the game open.

Samuelson had two of Cal Poly's six hits. McIntyre and Deming paced BYU's seven-hit offensive attack with a pair of hits.

Reid McLaughlin (2-0), the third of four BYU pitchers used in the game, earned the victory with three strikeouts over two innings. Starter Justin Sterner gave up one unearned run and four hits in 5 2/3 innings with four walks and seven strikeouts.

The loss went to Mustang junior right-hander Dylan Villalobos (0-1) as he surrendered the first three runs in the eighth inning. Starter Taylor Dollard was not involved in the decision despite striking out a career-high 12 BYU hitters. He allowed two runs and four hits over seven innings, leaving the game tied at 2-2.

Second game of the series will be played Friday night at 6 o'clock with Cal Poly junior southpaw Andrew Alvarez (0-1, 0.00 ERA) to face BYU freshman left-hander Cy Nielson (0-1, 4.91 ERA).

The series concludes with a 1 p.m. doubleheader Saturday.
-Provided by Cal Poly