SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara baseball lost the series finale to BYU on Saturday by a score of 8-4. Nate Favero went 3-for-5 at the plate for the Cougars with an RBI single and two two-run home runs. The Cougars led 4-2 going into the eighth inning but BYU added four runs late to put the game away.
BYU (29-14, 17-4 WCC) jumped out to a 3-0 lead on Santa Clara (11-35, 7-14 WCC) and never looked back. With three runs of support, Hayden Rogers (6-1) started on the mound for BYU and delivered a strong outing. He threw 5.2 innings while allowing just five hits and two earned runs. Rogers issued one walk and struck out five hitters in 86 pitches to earn the win.
The Cougars put three runs on the board in the first inning on three hits and one Bronco error. The Cougars were aggressive on the base paths and it paid off as they went first to third on a single and then scored on a fielder's choice. Following that, they scored from second base on two straight singles.
Sophomore third baseman John Cresto responded with a leadoff home run in the bottom of the first inning. His 10th home run of the season cut the Cougar lead to 3-1.
BYU pushed one run across in the top of the sixth inning on an RBI single by Favero to score Colton Shaver. Prior to Favero's at-bat, senior left fielder Tyler Meditz threw out a baserunner at the plate for the second out of the inning. Senior right-handed pitcher Jacob Steffens then recorded a strike out to end the inning without further damage. He (3-6) threw 7.0 innings for the Broncos in a losing effort. Steffens allowed 10 hits, four runs (three earned) and walked two batters while striking out five.
Meditz then helped the Bronco offense in the bottom of the sixth inning with a two-out RBI single to drive in freshman center fielder Andre Nnebe from second base.
Favero drove in Shaver on a two-run home run to right field in the top of the eighth inning to put BYU up 6-2. Favero hit a two-run shot again in the top of the ninth inning to extend the lead to 8-2.
Redshirt freshman designated hitter Ryan McCarthy hit a two-run home run to left field in the bottom of the ninth, his third home run of the season.
Up Next: Santa Clara hosts Pacific in its final home series of the season. The series begins on Friday at 6 p.m. PT and ends on Sunday at 1 p.m. PT, which is also Senior Day.
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