Air Force Falls To BYU In Game One; Remains Tied In Second Game
USAF ACADEMY, Colo. - Despite falling 17-2 in game one of a doubleheader to BYU, Air Force still has a chance at redemption as they enter Saturday tied 7-7 with the Cougars in game two, after the umpires halted the game after nine innings due to darkness, Friday afternoon at Falcon Field. BYU and Air Force resume game two at noon Saturday, then finish the series with game three immediately after.
In game one, Brandon Taylor tied an NCAA Div. I record by hitting for the cycle for the second time this season to lead the Cougars (30-12-1, 15-4 MWC) to the 17-2 win. Taylor went 5-for-6 in the game with three runs and four RBI.
Jeff Hiestand and Andrew Law also added to the Cougars 20-hit attack with Hiestand going 3-for-4 with three RBI and Law going 4-for-5 with four runs scored. Ben Saylor also hit his sixth homer of the season.
The Cougars went up 10-0 with four runs in the second and six in the third to never look back. BYU starter Jeff Harlacher improved to 5-2 on the season, striking out nine, while holding the Falcons to two runs on five hits in eight solid innings pitched.
Falcon starter Travis Fugler fell to 2-5 on the season, allowing seven runs on nine hits in two innings of work. Troy Jeffers and Jon Polston were the bright spots offensively for Air Force (5-35, 0-19), with Jeffers going 2-for-4 with a double and Polston hitting his second homer of the season.
After nine innings of play in game two, the Falcons and Cougars remain deadlocked at 7-7 in a game that was called at 7:05 p.m. due to darkness.
Highlighting BYU's nine hits so far in the game were home runs by Taylor, Apana Nakayama and Seth Iorg. Dale Kasel got into the home run act for the Falcons with his second homer of the season.
Game two has been a see saw affair so far with four lead changes through the nine innings. After the Falcons went ahead 2-0, the Cougars went ahead 4-2 in the third. Air Force rallied back in the bottom-half of the inning to tie the game at 4-4.
BYU went back ahead 5-4 in the top of the fourth, but the Falcons battled back with a run in the bottom of the inning to tie, then went back ahead, 6-5, with a run in the fifth. BYU then scored two runs in the seventh to go ahead 7-6.
Price Paramore then hit a pinch-hit triple to drive in Brent Tittle in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game up at 7-7.
Air Force starter Clayton Couch went six strong innings, holding the Cougars to five runs on seven hits. Paul Pratt pitched a tough-luck seventh and Mitch Brown provided scoreless relief for the Falcons in the eighth and ninth innings.
BYU starter Brandon Christiansen went 4.1 innings, allowing six runs on eight hits. Matthew Jensen pitched 1.2 scoreless innings in relief and Joshua Barrent surrendered the tying run through three innings of relief.
The two teams played a doubleheader today due to Thursday's game being postponed due to fog.