This game started out similar to game one of the series for the Beavs, going down quietly in the top of the first. Andrew Moore started off pitching well, sitting down the first three Cougar batters and it appeared that perhaps a pitcher's duel would begin. That was quickly dashed though when the Beavers started a one out rally in the top of the second inning, starting off with a Gabe Clark stand-up double. After a Kavin Keyes walk, Caleb Hamilton would earn the first RBI of the day scoring Gabe Clark. Logan Ice would hit into a double play to end the threat though. The Cougars would immediately get the lead back in the bottom of the inning. They would immediately earn one back with a double followed by a single to start. Wazzu would score one more with an RBI groundout. This brought the score to 2-1 in favor of WSU after two innings.
The Beavers would respond with a big top of the third. It started with another one out hit, this time from Jeff Hendrix which was followed by an Andy Peterson bunt single. Conforto was hit by a pitch to earn a base, followed by a Dylan Davis RBI walk to bring home Hendrix. Gabe Clark then got his second hit of the day earning two more RBI. That would do it for scoring in the third, as The Cougars went down fairly easily, leaving the score at 4-2 OSU after three full.
WSU would get another run back in the bottom of the fourth after the Beavs went down quickly in the top of the 4th. It could have been much worse however, as the Cougars had the bases loaded with one out when they scored on what was listed as a fielder's choice, but it was a groundball to Caleb Hamilton that he mishandled, the runner would have scored regardless. Moore would force two fly outs to reduce the damage done, the second on an impressive slide by Conforto to end the inning.
The Beavers then came out swinging in the fifth, beginning with a Conforto single. Davis would get out on a fielder's choice and then Gabe Clark's groundball single would chase Washington State pitcher Tanner Chleborad which brought in pitcher Layne Bruner from the bullpen. He would give up a sac fly and gave three free passes to get himself pulled from the game. Scott Simon would come in and close out the inning though. WSU then threatened in the bottom of the 5th, getting runners on 1st and 2nd with one out. The Cougs hit a groundball that Morrison would snag, toss to Peterson who would get it to Keyes at 1st in time for the double play to escape the inning with the score 6-3 in favor of the Beavs.
The Beavs would score two more in the top of the 6th with a sac fly from Clark and a Keyes single through the right side, but the Cougars were not ready to give in yet. Moore got himself in trouble again loading the bases with two outs after walking Yale Rosen. Nick Tanielu of the Cougs would drill a hit up the middle which scored two runs and forced Moore out of the game. Zach Reser came in and got the out though, keeping the Beaver lead at 3, 8-5.
OSU came out looking to close things down in the top of the 7th inning. Ice would earn a walk, and Trever Morrison would reach on an error by the shortstop Trace Tam Sing. After Hendrix grounded out to 1st base, Peterson came in and tried for a safety squeeze, but bunted the ball into his own path and was out on batter's interference. The rally continued with two outs however. Conforto was intentionally walked, then Davis hit a bloop single, followed by another Clark double, and finished with a Keyes single. Keyes would get caught in a bluff to 3rd and that ended the top of the 7th. Reser would handle the Cougars in the bottom of the inning, and Wazzu waved the white flag in the 8th with a mass substitution. That would tie up the series, setting up for a rubber match on Sunday.
The WSU announcers called the Beavs "bush league" for continuing to play aggressively in the top of the 8th. With some of the performances by the Beaver bullpen this year I think it was absolutely the correct choice.
Zach Reser has been lights out this year. He has still not allowed an earned run on the year.
Andrew Moore did acceptable, but is still not up to the high standard he set last year. He also did not have a single strikeout in today's game.
Gabe Clark caught fire today, with 2 singles, 2 doubles, and a sac fly. 6 out of 9 so far on the weekend.
Conforto and Davis finally made their way back as well, with Conforto scoring 4 runs and Davis getting 3 RBI.
The Beavs had 16 hits today to the Cougars 12. Even when Moore is off, he is still doing a superb job of scattering hits.
The Cougs and Beavs meet Sunday at noon for the rubber match. The expected matchup is Jace Fry vs. former Phillies 6th rounder Jason Monda.