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BYU baseball: Deseret Duel takes place Tuesday with BYU, Utah baseball

By Ralph R. Zobell

For the Deseret News

Published: Sunday, April 21 2013 6:36 p.m. MDT

BYU and Utah play Tuesday, March 26, 2013 at Spring Mobile Ballpark. Utah won 5-4.

Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

A rematch in the Deseret Duel on Tuesday against Utah in Provo precedes BYU baseball’s return to league action this week at Gonzaga.

The Cougars, 19-15 overall and 7-5 in the West Coast Conference, host Utah (16-19) on Tuesday at 6 p.m.

While a starting pitcher is yet to be named for the rematch against Utah, the rotation appears set for the three-game series at first-place Gonzaga (26-11-1 and 13-5 in the WCC). Desmond Poulson (5-0, 2.14), Jeff Barker (3-2, 3.93) and Adam Miller (2-6, 5.98) are scheduled to throw in that order starting Thursday at Spokane, Wash.

But first up is Utah which beat the Cougars 5-4 in 10 innings last month in Salt Lake City. The Deseret Duel baseball points are still up for grabs in the four-game series. BYU has won four of the five Deseret Duel baseball portions, with the Utes winning in 2011 on run differential.

“The next series we play is going to be one of the toughest series we play all year,” BYU coach Mike Littlewood said. “We need to go up there and find a way to sneak a game or two from Gonzaga. The goal would be to be above .500 when we come back home, that would be huge for us.”

The Cougars have been idle from competition for over a week due to final exams. The time off has been beneficial for the return of catcher Dakota Hernandez who broke his thumb 16 games into the season after starting nine of those contests. Hernandez’ return comes just in time as his replacement Jarrett Jarvis, who started the past 18 games, will be sidelined from a broken fibula in a collision successfully defending the plate in BYU’s last action.

The Utah and Gonzaga games will be broadcast live locally on KOVO Radio 960 AM, on Satellite Radio Sirius 143 and streamed online.

The next BYU home game after the Utah tilt is May 9, after the Cougars play the Utes in Salt Lake City on May 7. The Cougars play in Orem at Utah Valley University on April 30.

Ralph R. Zobell has worked for BYU Athletic Media Relations in various capacities for over 30 years. You can view his bio at http://byucougars.com/staff/athletics/ralph-zobell or contact him at ralph_zobell@byu.edu.

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