In what was, is, and probably will forever be the most surreal sporting event I've ever attended, the Beavers surprised the nation with a 12-6 victory over Arizona State on June 18, 2007.
Keep in mind that the Sun Devils swept the Beavers in a weekend series in Corvallis during the regular season by an aggregate score of 15-4. Collectively, the Beavers batted .110 for the series. The Beavers did beat the Sun Devils at home in a pre-season tournament, but the Beavers couldn't do anything in the Pac-10 series.
But yet, the Beavers basically dominated the Devils in Omaha.
Picture being at the game. You've been hearing all the hype around Rosenblatt. A Pac-10 rivalry in the heart of the country. Arizona State swept the regular season series, but the defending National Champs are looking to knock the perennial powers into the loser's bracket. You get to your seat well in advance of game time. Gundy is in the house:
You're feeling optimistic about the Beavers chances. Then, Oregon State scores two runs in the bottom of the first inning. Then four more runs in the bottom of the second. Then one run in the third, fourth, and fifth innings. Then three in the sixth. Before you know it, the Beavers are up 12-1 through six on one of the best teams in the country.
In that stretch of six innings, amazing happened.
I could go on forever; in the game, Chris Hopkins was 3-for-6 with 3 runs scored and a double. Joey Wong was 3-for-4 with a run scored, 3 RBI's, and a double. Mike Lissman was 3-for-4 with 2 runs scored, 4 RBI's, and a three run home run. Jason Ogata was 3-for-4 with 1 RBI. Jordan Lennerton was 2-for-5 with 2 runs and a home run. And Lonnie Lechelt was 2-for-5 with 2 runs scored, a RBI, a double, and a triple.
Mike Stutes pitched exceptionally well until he ran out of gas in the seventh inning. He held the Sun Devils, who were hitting .348 as as team with 78 homers in 62 games to only three hits, and left in the seventh innings with the bases loaded. When all was said and done, Mike was responsible for four runs.
After the sixth inning, the offensive production slowed down, and the Beavers started hoping that the Sun Devils wouldn't have the guts to mount an eleven run comeback. They started to make a comeback in the seventh which caused Stutes to exit the game in favor of Blake Keitzman. Keitzman allowed two hits and a run and struck out one in the few batters that he faced. Grbavac came on in releif of Keitzman and couldn't get the job done, allowing a walk to the only batter he faced. It was then that the Beavers turned to their go-to guy, Joe Patterson, to get the job done. Patterson got the Beavers out of that inning, and would up going the distance.
Stutes would get the win, moving him to 11-4 on the season.
Besides moving the Beavers into the drivers seat of their pool, this game gave the Beavers a huge confidence boost. Basically, if you can beat Arizona State, you can beat anybody. And that's just what they did the rest of the week. Those stories coming up later in the week.
My personal photos from the game follow. There's even more than last time.
P.S.: Here's a video I took after the game. It's pretty crappy quality, but it shows you how business-like the Beavers were after the win. That was easily the best win of the season to-date, yet the Beavers show little emotion: