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Tom Smart, Deseret News
BYU coach Gordon Eakin talks with the team as the BYU softball team holds their last practice before leaving for the NCAA tournament in Eugene, Oregon, Monday, May 14, 2012, in Provo, Utah.

  • Related article: Cougars hitting their stride in time for NCAAs

    EUGENE, Ore. — The BYU softball team will play its first game of the NCAA Regional on Thursday against Mississippi State at Haws Field on the campus of the University of Oregon.

    The game will begin at 3 p.m. PDT and will be broadcast live on BYU Radio (byuradio.org, SiriusXM143) and on a live video feed at www.byucougars.com.

    The Cougars are taking a 14-game winning streak into the postseason after winning the Western Athletic Conference Tournament. BYU has won 19 of its last 20 games since April 11. BYU boasts five All-WAC honorees, including senior Delaney Willard, second in the nation with 88 RBIs on the year, and junior JC Clayton, who is on a 14-game hitting streak and has 77 hits this season, the fourth most in the country.

    Under BYU head coach Gordon Eakin, BYU is making its eighth-straight NCAA postseason apperance and has a record of 12-16 in eight previous apperances. In 2010, the Cougars reached their first-ever Super Regional after winning the Austin Regional in a three-game sweep.

    Other teams in the Eugene regional include Oregon, third-place finisher in the Pac-12, and Portland State, the Pacific Coast Conference Tournament champion.

    Mississippi State is 33-22 on the season and is making its first NCAA trip in three years. The Bulldogs are 2-0 against BYU all-time, with the two teams last facing each other in 2007.

    Jordan Christiansen works in BYU athletic communications as a football media relations assistant and the softball sports information director. He can be reached at [email protected] or on twitter @byujordan.