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Big Inning Propels Beavers over Bears In Game One

Using a five-run seventh inning to its advantage, Oregon State notched a win against a team it has struggled against in recent years, California, 8-4 on Friday afternoon at Goss Stadium. 

Red-hot Tyler Waldron, who came into the game at 2-1 with a 3.18 ERA, got the start for the Beavers on the mound. He gave up four runs on eight hits to the Bears, the best hitting team in conference, over the course of seven and two thirds innings. He struck out eight without giving up a walk in the game. 

Ryan Gorton, out of Tigard High School, came on in relief of Gorton in the eighth. He pitched a scoreless inning and a third, striking out one batter. 

The Golden Bears struck first in the first inning. Leadoff man Brett Jackson led off with a double down the left field line, and Jeff Kobernus followed up with a base hit down the left field line to drive in Jackson. 

In the third inning, it was more of the same for the Golden Bears, as back to back doubles by nine-hitter Dwight Tanaka and Brett Jackson resulted in another Golden Bear run, giving Cal a 2-0 lead. 

However, the Beavers would catch up in the bottom of the second. Jared Norris reached on a single, and Ryan Ortiz was hit by a pitch from Cal starter Matt Flemer. Both runners would move up on a wild pitch, putting them in great position to be driven home by a Rob Folsom base hit to right-center. Folsom's 2-RBI single tied the game at 2-2 heading into the third.

The Beavers would take the lead in the bottom of the third inning, as they manufactured a run the old-fashioned way. John Wallace led off the inning with a base hit, Joey Wong bunted him to second, and Wallace scored on a base hit by Adalberto Santos. 

Oregon State broke the game open in the seventh inning, turning a one run lead into a six run lead. John Wallace got the first hit of the inning with a single. The Beavers didn't waste much time scoring Wallace, as Joey Wong drove him home on the third pitch of his at-bat with a triple to center field, his second three-bagger of the season. Wong would then score on a base hit by Santos. Santos would move over to third by way of a stolen base and a passed ball.

Later in the inning, with two outs, pinch hitter Kyle Beverley walked to put runners on first and third. It was then Ryan Ortiz, hitting out of the six-hole, who hit a 2-RBI double to right center, keeping the inning alive and putting the Beavers up by the score of 7-2. But Oregon State wasn't done yet-- Ortiz scored when Rob Folsom reached by way of a wild throw by California second baseman Jeff Kobernus, moving the Beaver lead to 8-2.

With two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning, Cal begin to mount a rally. First baseman Mark Canha reached on an infield single then moved to third on a double by Brian Guinn, putting two on with two outs. At this point, the Beavers went to the bullpen to replace Waldron with Ryan Gorton, who immediately went into a battle with Cal left fielder Danny Oh. Oh fouled off six pitches as part of a ten pitch at-bat that ended with a base hit to right center, scoring both Canha and Guinn, cutting the defecit to just four runs at 8-4. 

Gorton would shut down the Bears in the top of the ninth inning, sealing the game for the Beavers. With the win, the Beavers move to 16-6 on the year and protect their No. 19 ranking in the polls. 

Game 2 of the series is scheduled for Saturday at 2 p.m., with Greg Peavey getting the start.

--Jake (jake.buildingthedam@gmail.com)