Game 2 of the series certainly felt closer than the scoreline reads. Part of that can be attributed to UCLA reaching base in all but the 3rd inning. The Beavers also scored 3 insurance runs in the 9th to make the score much more lopsided than it should've been.
Andrew Moore held the Bruins hitless through 3.1 innings, although it certainly didn't feel like it. In the bottom of the first, UCLA loaded the bases with 2 outs on a couple walks and an unsuccessful fielders' choice. Moore struck out Bruin catcher Shane Zeile to get out of the jam. In the 4th UCLA had another runner in scoring position, but a groundout to shortstop Andy Peterson ended the inning. UCLA first basemen Cody Regis was on 2nd with one out in the 6th, but was thrown out by Nate Esposito trying to take 3rd on a wild pitch (VIDEO of the wild pitch).
The Beavers scored the first run of the game in the 3rd inning. Peterson, who went 2-4 with 2 runs and 2 RBIs, singled up the middle and moved to 2nd on a Ryan Barnes walk. Joey Jansen, who also was 2-4, got 1 of his 2 RBIs on a double into right center. Peterson scored, but Barnes was thrown out at the plate, killing any chances of jumping out to a big lead (VIDEO of the RBI double).
Oregon State tacked on another run in the 5th, when Kavin Keyes led off with a double into left field. The Bruin left fielders have been playing off the line all series, no matter the pitcher or batter. Jake Rodriguez bunted him to 3rd, and Esposito singled him home (VIDEO of Espo's RBI hit). Unfortunately neither Peterson nor Barnes could drive in Esposito. Peterson could've had an even bigger day, but he struck out with runners at the corners to end the 7th inning.
Things got interesting in the bottom of the 7th, as a groundball to 2nd came up on Peterson and his throw to first narrowly beat centerfielder Brian Carroll to the bag. Or at least it did in the eyes of first base umpire Steven Corvi. UCLA head coach John Savage and I shared the opinion that Corvi made the wrong call, and Savage chose to make sure everybody in the first base stands knew what he had to say to Corvi. Savage, miraculously, was not ejected from the game, which was probably his goal. If he wished to remain in the game he wouldn't have been nearly as loud or vulgar as he was.
Once play resumed with 2 outs, Moore was pulled in favor of Max Engelbrekt. Engelbrekt walked the first batter he saw, but Jake Rodriguez (Esposito was pinch-ran for earlier) caught Christoph Bono trying to steal 3rd on ball 4 (VIDEO of the caught stealing). Nobody was sure exactly why he stole, unless he thought there was a runner on first who would also be going on the full count pitch. Engelbrekt breezed through the eighth, erasing a leadoff single with a 6-4-3 double play.
In the 9th, Keyes and J-Rod drew back-to-back walks with one out, and were moved over by Tyler Smith's 2-strike bunt. Smith is still not cleared to swing, but bunting is on the table for the injured shortstop, who is recovering from a hairline fracture in his hand. Andy Peterson hit a routine groundball to second-baseman Tyler Chatterton that hit a trampoline and bounced over his head into right-center field, scoring 2 (VIDEO of the 2-RBI single). Jansen made it 5-0 with an RBI single (VIDEO of Jansen's second RBI of the day)
Cole Brocker came on in the 9th and gave up a leadoff single but never allowed a runner to reach 2nd.
Andrew Moore, the winning pitcher, struck out 5 (4 looking), walked 3 and hit 1. Losing pitcher Nick Vander Tuig surrendered 2 runs on 7 hits, also in 6.2 innings. He walked 1 and struck out 6.
The 3-4-5 batters of the Beaver lineup went 0-13 with 5 strikeouts. Michael Conforto and Danny Hayes are 0-fer the series. Luckily, the rest of the lineup picked up the struggling sluggers, hitting a combined 9-19 while scoring and driving in all 5 Beaver runs. Kavin Keyes scored 2 of those runs as part of his 2-3 day.
The rubber match of the series is Sunday, and the Beavers starter is TBD. It will likely be either Dan Child or Ben Wetzler. Sophomore lefty Grant Watson is getting the start for the Bruins. Watson (5-0, 2.30) was beat up by Arizona State in his last start. He went just 2.1 innings while giving up 6 runs (all earned) on 9 hits. The Bruin offense managed to keep Watson's record perfect.