Pacific baseball (21-21, 8-12 WCC) got overpowered by BYU (28-10, 12-5 WCC) on Friday night at Klein Family Field in a 12-1 loss. The victory clinched a series win for BYU with a game still to play on Saturday.
The Tigers took an early lead with a run in the first inning, but BYU scored four in the third inning to take the lead and never looked back. Pacific got an RBI single out of junior catcher James Free and a run scored out of freshman infielder James Arakawa who led off the first inning with a hit.
The Tigers ran into a strong starting pitcher in Easton Walker who moved to 6-0 on the season in a night in which he allowed just five hits in eight full innings of work. His one run allowed came in the first inning. Walker had plenty of help from his defense which turned four double plays in the game. The center of the infield was critical in turning several of the twin killings with fancy glovework from the shortstop and second baseman. Offensively, Jackson Cluff led the way for BYU with a 3-4 night with two runs scored, four RBIs, a double and a triple. He was a home run short of the cycle.
Pacific started the game strong with a leadoff single in the bottom of the first inning from Arakawa. He would advance to third on a groundout and wild pitch before scoring on Free's single. Pacific got runners on in the second and third inning, but both chances were erased by BYU double plays.
In the top of the third inning, BYU got four runs off of an RBI single and a three-run homer and didn't look back. They would go on to score five in the fourth, one in the fifth and two in the eighth inning.
Pacific's starter, sophomore Hayden Pearce was run from the game after three and a third innings. Two more Tiger relievers worked the contest before senior Ricky Reynoso entered and played the role of inning eater. He worked five innings and allowed three runs while getting the Tigers out of the game in the loss.
Pacific and BYU wrap up the series tomorrow at Klein Family Field in a 1 p.m. game. It is Pacific's Bark in the Ballpark promotion. Be sure to bring your furry friend to the game! The first 50 dogs to the game get free Pacific bandanas and treats.