PROVO, Utah — The BYU softball team faces Southern Utah in an in-state doubleheader matchup Tuesday, before playing Saint Mary’s on Friday and Saturday to close out conference play.
Tuesday and Friday’s doubleheaders both begin at 5 p.m. MDT, while Saturday’s doubleheader begins at 11 a.m. MDT. Following the conclusion of the last game Saturday, the BYU coaching staff will recognize the four seniors on this year’s roster including JC Clayton, Bailie Hicken, Hannah Howell and Alexandra Hudson Shamo.
BYU quick hits
BYU’s freshman stepped it up in the team’s series against CSU Bakersfield. Gordy Bravo hit .462, had five runs scored and four RBIs, alongside a triple and double. Coco Taualii hit .417 and had one home run, six RBIs and two runs scored.
Sophomore pitcher Caroline Umphlett went 2-0 against CSU Bakersfield to earn her first win since Feb. 9 against Idaho State in the first tournament of the season.
BYU has an overall record of 42-4 against Southern Utah and is on a 27-game winning streak against the Thunderbirds.
This will be the first time that BYU and Saint Mary’s will play at Gail Miller Field. BYU has an overall record of 4-0 against the Gaels, and this conference series will be the last of the season for both teams.
Senior season highlights
The BYU softball team will recognize its seniors — JC Clayton, Bailie Hicken, Hannah Howell and Alexandra Hudson Shamo — on Saturday following the conclusion of the series against Saint Mary’s.
JC Clayton has had a record-breaking year, becoming the all-time leader in career hits at BYU. She also set the single-game record for stolen bases in a game with four against San Diego and is just two stolen bases away from tying the all-time career record at BYU. Clayton was named to the Top 50 Watch List for the 2013 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year at the start of the season, is a three-time PCSC Player of the Week and an Easton Second-Team All-American.
Bailie Hicken leads the team in PCSC statistics with a .367 clip. She has nine runs scored in conference play and a career-high five RBIs. Hicken hit the first double of her career against Santa Clara and had a career-high three hits, two runs scored and two RBIs in the game. Last year, Hicken was named to the Academic All-WAC team and is also a WAC Scholar-Athlete.
Hannah Howell pitched just the second perfect game in BYU softball history against LMU on Apr. 13. She was named the PCSC Pitcher of the Week for the week of Apr. 14-20 and PCSC College Madness Player of the Week for the week of Mar. 17-23. Howell has a 1.44 ERA in conference play and has given up just 12 earned runs in 12 appearances. She has 35 strikeouts alongside a record of 7-2 in PCSC play.
Alexandra Hudson Shamo has had the best season of her career, hitting a career-high .350 alongside career highs in hits (42), runs (14), walks (27), triples (2) and putouts (45). Shamo leads the conference with an on-base percentage of .473.
With a record of 16-30 on the season, SUU heads to Provo in search of its first win against the Cougars since 2006. The Thunderbirds have three batters hitting over .300 on the season in Kelsey Bryant, Mikkel Griffin and Madison Resley. SUU’s top four batters have 23 of the team’s 25 home runs on the season. Bryant, hitting a .349 clip to lead the team, also leads the team with 28 runs scored and 35 RBIs. Pitcher Ariel Zimmerman has made the most appearances on the mound with 36 on the season. She has a record of 10-17 for the Thunderbirds and leads the team with a 4.51 ERA.
Saint Mary’s has a record of 20-27 on the season and is 11-9 in PCSC play. The Gaels are led by Megan Smith, who is hitting a .309 clip alongside a team-high 26 RBIs. Brittany Sabatini provides speed and power for the team, leading them with 25 runs scored and nine stolen bases. She also has four home runs and five doubles on the season. Lujane Mussadi leads the team from the mound with a 1.76 season ERA and a record of 13-10. She’s only given up 44 earned runs in 37 appearances. With a season batting average of .202 Saint Mary’s is way below BYU’s average of .289. However, the Gaels have out-hit BYU in home runs with 23 to the Cougars’ 14.
Where to watch
Live stats will be available for all games through the BYU softball schedule page, while Friday and Saturday’s doubleheaders against Saint Mary’s will also be broadcast live on BYUtv and online at byutvsports.com.
Jamie Morris is the softball sports information director for BYU Athletic Communications.
Copyright 2016, Deseret News Publishing Company