Jaren Wilkey, BYU Photo
BYU players huddle together. After five weeks on the road, BYU softball plays its first home games of the season against in-state foe Southern Utah in a doubleheader Friday.

After five weeks on the road, BYU softball plays its first home games of the season against in-state foe Southern Utah in a doubleheader Friday.

The Cougars (13-12) play the first game against the Thunderbirds (3-19) Friday at 4 p.m. MDT, and the second at 6 p.m. The games will be televised on BYUtv, and links to live stats can be found on the BYU softball schedule page.

Athletic marketing will host “Millennial Night” during the second game, featuring in-game promotions and activities on the concourse. Fans can get free prizes and other handouts, including the official drink of the ROC, “The George Randall.”

BYU storylines

The Cougars have gone 31-11 in home-opening weekends since the program’s inception in 2000. BYU has played its first home games of the season against SUU twice, going 2-0 in 2002 and 1-0 in 2010.

Sophomore outfielder Rylee Jensen earned her third career West Coast Conference Softball Player of the Week honor in the fifth week of competition. Jensen batted .421 on the week, scored 10 runs and collected eight hits, including five home runs and one triple. She also had seven RBIs.

BYU ranks No. 16 nationally and No. 1 in the WCC in home runs per game with 1.12. Ten Cougars have hit 28 homers in 25 games so far this season, led by Jensen’s six. Libby Sugg and Caitlyn Alldredge follow with four, while Lexi Tarrow and Bridget Fleener have both hit three. Alexa Strid, Briielle Breland and Allie Hancock have two apiece. Madison Merrell and Ashley Godfrey have also hit dingers.

Junior catcher and team captain Sugg has been named to the 2018 USA Softball College Player of the Year Watch List. She earned NFCA All-Pacific Region First-Team honors and was named to the All-WCC Second Team last season. Sugg led the team in RBIs and home runs with 56 and 13, respectively, while hitting .356 in 2017.

Southern Utah

The Thunderbirds are 3-19 on the season so far, most recently going 1-3 at the LMU Tournament with a 9-3 win over Harvard. BYU leads the overall series, 52-7. The Cougars won both games in 2017: 4-0 in Provo and 13-3 in Cedar City. Head coach Tom Gray enters his fourth season at Southern Utah and has compiled a record of 48-98 in three seasons with the Thunderbirds.