Junior left-fielder Kate Dickman knocked a walkoff double in the bottom of the ninth to lift the Utes 1-0 over visiting BYU on Thursday. They’ll put their new home field’s advantage to the true test this weekend when they host No. 4 Oregon on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
A news release said sophomore righty Kayce Nieto (6-7) yielded just four Cougar hits in her second complete-game shutout of the season. Dickman’s seventh double increased the Mission Viejo, Calif., native’s RBI total to 16 for the 11-9 Utes. (Freshman shortstop Anissa Urtez leads the team with 17.)
BYU (10-18) starter Tori Almond went 8 1/3 innings and struck out seven. The Utes lead the 2013-14 Deseret First Duel 41-6, the release said.
The $4.3 million Ute Softball Stadium seats 1,410 and includes an indoor batting area, outdoor batting and pitching cages for both teams, and dugouts with restrooms. Six banks of stadium lights allow the team to play night games. With temporary bleacher seating, the field will be eligible to host NCAA tournaments, a news release from the U. said.
The Utes split their first two Pac-12 games against the Huskies in Washington. The Ducks (22-3) will visit at 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, with a noon start Monday. They’ve outscored opponents 149-44 this year and run-ruled nine teams.
The Utes will have a ribbon-cutting ceremony, with athletic director Chris Hill delivering a speech before the first pitch.
Oregon will also play a doubleheader against BYU and Southern Utah on Tuesday in Provo.
Click here to see a photo gallery of the new facility.
— Matthew Piper
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