Ralph R. Zobell | Posted: 15 May 2015 | Updated: 8 Nov 2020

Tenth-inning rally leads to an 8-5 victory over Broncos

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SANTA CLARA, California—Brennon Lund’s two-out single in the 10th inning broke the deadlock Thursday to spur BYU on to an 8-5 victory over Santa Clara.

The sophomore centerfielder’s single to left field started a three-run rally as the Cougars, 26-22 overall and 14-10 in the West Coast Conference, eliminated Santa Clara from contention for next week’s league tournament.

“I would say that’s one of the more rewarding wins I’ve ever had because what was riding on it,” BYU coach Mike Littlewood said, whose team remained alive for a tourney berth. “There was no stress, no tension, in the dugout. It was a great feeling and it’s what we’re trying to preach, team, team, team. We got a 100 percent team effort tonight.”

The Broncos, 25-27 and 11-14, got a superb effort from starting pitcher Reece Karalus who struck out 11 in seven innings before he left the game with a 4-2 lead.

“(Colton) Shaver looked like a freshman, but so did Dillon Robinson (each with three strikeouts)," Littlewood said, "When Dillon is taking swings like that, you know the guy (Karalus) is good, he’s got a great approach.”

Cougar starter Brandon Kinser was pulled before Karalus left the game, preserving the senior right-hander for Monday’s makeup game at Saint Mary’s. Junior Brady Corless took the mound in the seventh in nearly an unsung effort, striking out the first two SCU batters.

“I loved Brady Corless’ inning,” Littlewood said. “It was just awesome--a huge, huge inning for us to bridge the gap.”

Then in the eighth frame, Shaver drove in catcher Bronson Larsen in the middle of a three-run rally that tied the game 5-5. Larsen led off that frame with a towering double before BYU plated its first three batters off the first of four Bronco relievers.

“Bronson peppered that ball, it almost got out and it kind of got us going,” Littlewood said. Larsen, who extended his hitting streak to 21 games, also gunned down the Bronco pinch runner trying to steal second to end the ninth inning.

“I can’t be more proud of the way our guys handled themselves, that’s the culture we’re trying to create,” Littlewood said. “There was no give up in those guys tonight. We played a very solid game. We want these guys to relish this for a couple hours, but not sit on it. Overall, it was a great team effort.”

Sophomore Mason Marshall picked up his fourth win of the season, pitching the final three innings with as many strikeouts.

Thursday’s game, the first of a three-game series, was delayed an hour because of rain. The two teams meet again on Friday at 6 p.m. PDT.

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