SALT LAKE CITY — Utah used the long ball and superb pitching to lock up its first home baseball series win since joining the Pac-12, topping Washington State on Saturday afternoon, 2-1.
Trey Nielsen knocked two solo homers and three Utah pitchers combined to hold the Cougars' offense to a single run.
Nielsen hit round-trippers in the fourth and sixth innings to tie him for the Ute lead and give the squad all the runs it would need on this afternoon. The Utah first baseman is 3-for-8 with three runs scored in the series. He has three home runs this year.
"I've been seeing it well so far in this series," Nielsen said. "I was swinging late the first time I came up and then he left me a hanger and I made the adjustment. Luckily, it paid off and we got ourselves the 'W' here today."
Freshman hurler Dalton Carroll earned his third win of the year, allowing one run on only six hits in 61?3 innings. He also walked two batters while striking out four. Nick Green came on in relief for the second day in a row and pitched two innings of shutout ball, striking out two batters. Luke West retired the final two Cougars to earn his first save.
"Coming off the Arizona series, we knew we played well enough to get two games in that series," Carroll said. "We felt that if we kept playing our system and believing in our coaches that we'd get some positive results."
BYU: At Santa Clara, Calif., juniors Bret Lopez and Derek Speigner ignited BYU's baseball team to a come-from-behind 5-2 victory Saturday and three-game sweep over Santa Clara.
The duo helped BYU improve its record to 17-14 overall and 5-4 in the West Coast Conference, while Santa Clara fell to 8-21 and 0-9 in conference.
Lopez, BYU's designated hitter, tied the game at 2-2 with a solo homer to lead off the seventh inning after Speigner retired four straight Broncos. Lopez, who was 2-for-3 with three runs and a pair of RBIs, increased BYU's lead with a run-scoring double in the eighth.
Speigner continued with his unorthodox delivery, holding the Broncos hitless in his 41/3 innings of relief to earn his third win of the season.
UTAH VALLEY UNIVERSITY: At Newark, N.J., UVU split a Saturday doubleheader at NJIT, winning 5-1 before seeing a 39-game Great West Conference winning streak come to an end in the second game in a 9-7 loss.
The Wolverines (11-18, 2-1) rallied late in Game 2 but couldn't erase a 9-2 deficit in suffering their first loss in the conference regular season since the 2011 season. UVU had won 31 straight regular season games plus eight consecutive tournament games against GWC schools.
In the first game, Devin Nelson (2-3) pitched a complete-game four-hitter, allowing just one run while the offense came up with five doubles — two from Kai Hatch — in the win. Stone Ramsey had two hits, including a double, in handing Mark Leiter Jr. (3-5) a loss in a complete-game effort.
SALT LAKE COMMUNITY COLLEGE: At West Jordan, the Bruins (26-14, 14-10 SWAC) dropped a pair of Scenic West Athletic Conference home games to Western Nevada College (29-16, 14-11 SWAC) on Saturday, losing 9-3 and 4-3.
SLCC freshman pitcher Brady Corless took the loss in game one with eight strikeouts and three earned runs in five innings of work. Freshman infielder Zach Watts was 2-for-3 at the plate with one RBI and sophomore catcher Nathan Fishel was 1-for-3 with one RBI in the losing effort.
Bruin sophomore pitcher Rhett Nelson took the loss in the second game with three strikeouts and four earned runs allowed in 61/3 innings pitched.
DIXIE STATE UNIVERSITY: At St. George, Kody Christoffersen completed his second quality start in a row and got plenty of offensive support on Saturday afternoon as Dixie State defeated Holy Names, 11-1, to take their weekend Pacific West Conference series at Bruce Hurst Field.
The Red Storm had 15 hits, including a 4-for-5 afternoon from Yuto Kata, to improve to 23-9 on the year and 16-8 in the PacWest.
BYU: At Boise, in the USTA's hand-picked College MatchDay, the No. 41 BYU men's tennis team topped the No. 45 Boise State Broncos on Saturday at the Boas Tennis Center.
BYU's (16-4) victory over Boise State (12-9) ends the Broncos' 28-match home win streak. The Cougars improve to 7-2 against ranked teams this year and 33-0 in the mountain region over the last four years.
With the score tied at three points each, BYU's Andrey Goryachkov, playing in the No. 6 singles position, won his first set but found himself down early in the second. The freshman singles player then won three straight games to earn a 4-2 lead against Garrett Patton. The lead proved to be fatal for Patton as Goryachkov secured the fourth point and the victory for the Cougars.
UTAH STATE: At Logan, the Utah State women's tennis was defeated by Texas State, 4-3, at home Saturday as it won two of the three doubles matches to secure the point and won two of the six singles matches. The Aggies are now 4-9 overall for the season with the loss, including an 0-3 record in conference play.
Track and field
UTAH STATE: Despite adverse weather that featured rainy and wet conditions, the Utah State's men and women's track and field teams won four event titles as part of 25 top-six finishes Saturday at the Boise State-hosted All-Idaho Cup.
Winning events for the USU women were sophomores Chari Hawkins in the 100-meter hurdles (13.90) and Mariah Thompson in the high jump with a leap of 5 feet, 5 inches, as well as junior Keeley Eldredge in the hammer throw with a toss of 181 feet, 2 inches. Hawkins' time in the 100-meter hurdles ranks her eighth in school history.
The Aggie men's 4x100-meter relay team also crossed the finish line first with a time of 41.22. The team consisted of freshmen Kalon Weston and Cole Lambourne, sophomore Nic Bowens and junior Will Henry. The men's 4x400-meter relay team, consisting of Bowens, Henry, Lambourne and senior Tyler Killpack, placed second in the event with a time of 3:14.91.
UTAH: At Salt Lake City, sophomore left fielder Kate Dickman hit two home runs and two triples for six RBIs as the University of Utah softball team split a Pac-12 Conference twin bill with No. 15 UCLA on Saturday at Utah Softball Stadium. The Utes won the second game of the day, 7-4, after a 6-4 loss in the first game.
Utah (15-20-1, 2-9 Pac-12) outhit the Bruins on the day, .320 to .286.
Dickman had four hits in five at-bats in the two games, including her first two home runs of the season — one of the inside-the-park variety. Her two triples on the day give her four for the season, which ties for the team lead. Fifteen extra-base hits in 2013 help give her a .528 slugging percentage, which ranks second on the squad. She now has 26 career extra-base hits, while her two multi-hit games against the Bruins gave her eight for the season.
BYU, UVU: At Orem, a seventh-inning comeback attempt by BYU's softball squad fell short, as the Cougars dropped a 3-2 matchup with Utah Valley on Saturday in the third game of a four-game weekend series.
Jamie North came through with a walk-off single to lift the Wolverines to victory in the first game.
BYU won the second game, 3-2, in 10 innings when it scored the go-ahead run after Katie 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 sacrifice bunt.
SOUTHERN UTAH: At Cedar City, Southern Utah (11-26, 5-4) took a 6-5 win over visiting Sacramento State (18-15, 3-3) with a two-out RBI single off the bat of senior Kelsey Bryant in the bottom of the eighth inning on Saturday. The Thunderbirds picked up their second straight series win at home to move up to third place in the Big Sky standings halfway through the conference season.
UTAH STATE: At Kaysville, Utah State's softball team earned its first Western Athletic Conference series win Saturday after splitting a doubleheader with UT San Antonio at the Barnes Sports Complex. The Aggies captured the first game, 1-0, while the Roadrunners held on for a 5-4 win in the second game.
This was the second-straight day that the Aggies' game was moved from Logan to Kaysville. The series win was the first since the Aggies swept Nevada in Reno in April of 2011.
WEBER STATE: At Pocatello, the Weber State University softball team dropped its series finale with rival Idaho State on Saturday, falling 9-3 to the Bengals at Miller Ranch Stadium.
The Wildcats had five hits, including RBI doubles from sophomore outfielder Kortney Jensen and freshman third baseman Alyson Kulp. Junior shortstop Brooke Silva had an RBI single, while freshman first baseman Krystin Kubo and sophomore designated player Stephanie Mathias each had singles.
SALT LAKE COMMUNITY COLLEGE: At Taylorsville, the No. 4-ranked Bruins (36-5, 30-2 SWAC) completed a sweep of the four-game weekend series with Scenic West Athletic Conference opponent Western Nevada College (8-31, 5-21 SWAC) on Saturday.
The Bruins topped the Wildcats 12-3 in Game 1 and picked up an 11-0 win in Game 2, outhitting WNC 23-13 on the day. WNC committed eight total fielding errors in the two contests.
Sophomore pitcher MaCauley Flint picked up the Game 1 win with five strikeouts and two earned runs allowed in four innings pitched. Sophomore designated player Whitney Holt and sophomore catcher/first baseman Lyndsey Healey were each 2-for-3 at the plate, with each player registering a double, two runs scored and two RBIs.
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WESTMINSTER: At Salt Lake City, the second-ranked Westminster College men's lacrosse team used a strong fourth quarter to claim a 15-11 victory over No. 4 Concordia (Calif.) on Saturday afternoon at Dumke Field.
Westminster (11-4) found themselves trailing for much of the afternoon. The Griffins would assume control of their fifth-straight win with three goals in the first 2:41 of the fourth quarter. Collin Madsen tallied the first of the stretch before Brian Tyrrell notched two straight to make it 13-10. Tyrrell and Postler finished the game with consecutive goals for the Griffins.