#5 Oregon (42-15, 19-9) at #23 Oregon State (36-18, 16-12) at 1:05 PM PDT at Goss Stadium at Coleman Field - ROOT Sports NW - KEJO 1240 AM & KPOJ 620 AM - Audio & Video Stream on Beaver Nation Online, for a fee
Oregon and Oregon St. continue the Civil War today, with the middle game of their Pac-12 season ending series.
The Beavers had to come from behind twice Friday night, before pulling away for the 7-3 win that moved Coach Pat Casey ahead of Jack Riley for most wins by an Oregon St. coach. A video tribute to Casey and his 614th win followed.
The Ducks jumped all over Oregon St. starter Ben Wetzler right away, when Ryon Healey homered in the top of the first, with J.J. Altobelli aboard for a 2-0 lead. It could have been much worse, Oregon proceeded to load the bases, but Wetzler got back to back strikeouts to get out of the jam.
The Beavers bounced right back, with RBI singles by Danny Hayes and Ryan Dunn that drove in Max Gordon and Michael Conforto, in the bottom of the first, but it looked like it was destined to be the Ducks' night when Aaron Jones drove in Altobelli, who had doubled, to put Oregon back ahead 3-2 in the top of the second, and Alex Keudell, who had won his last 9 starts, settled down.
But Keudell lost his control in the 5th, when Dunn drew a walk with the bases loaded, due to 2 earlier walks, scoring Jake Rodriguez, who had led off the inning with a double, to tie the game up. Oregon St. took the lead for good when Ryan Barnes singled to drive in both Tyler Smith and Hayes.
The Beavers added a pair of insurance runs in the 7th, when Dunn doubled, and scored on a nifty tag evading slide on Barnes' single, which gave him 3 RBIs for the night. Another run scored when, with the bases loaded, Joey Housey, who had taken over for Keudell in the 6th, hit pinch hitter Joey Matthews, scoring Barnes.
Oregon St. could have blown Oregon out, but the Beavers left the bases loaded in the 7th, and Conforto was thrown out at the plate in the 8th. It didn't matter though, as Scott Schultz, who took over for Wetzler once he hit 111 pitches in the 6th inning, set 9 straight Duck batters down before hitting Altobelli with a pitch with 2 out in the 9th.
A strike out ended it, earning Schultz his first save of the season, and setting off a celebration of Casey's record setting win.
Wetzler also got to book a win, improving him to 7-2 for the season. Keudell took the loss, leaving him at 10-4 for the year.
A crowd of 3.061, the largest number of tickets sold for a game this season at Goss Stadium, and the first crowd to top the 3K mark this year, was on hand. Another similar sized turnout is expected today.
Arizona pulled into a tie with Oregon for first place in the Pac-12, with a 1-0 win over Arizona St., when Robert Refsnyder scored with 1 out in the bottom of the 9th on a double by Seth Meijas-Brean. Oregon does hold the tie-breaker over Arizona.
UCLA pulled within 1 game of first when the Bruins beat USC 3-1. Oregon also holds the tie-breaker over UCLA, who became the second Pac-12 team to reach the 40 win level with the victory.
Stanford couldn't keep up though, as the Cardinal lost to California 5-4, though it took the Golden Bears 18 innings to become the only Pac-12 road team to win Friday night, as the Bay Area teams effectively played a double header, but only get to count 1 game in the standings. The Bears' bullpen took the bigger hit though, which could be to the Cardinal's advantage today.
The Beavers moved within a game of Arizona St. and Stanford with their win, but remain in 6th, which is the lowest they can finish. A third place finish is within reach, however.
Washington beat Washington St. 5-2, and UC-Santa Barbara edged Utah 3-2 in a non-conference contest.
Senior Day Toady
Even though its not the final home game of the regular season (that's tomorrow), today is officially "Senior Day" for the 4 Beaver seniors, third baseman Ryan Dunn, catcher/outfielder/pitcher Ryan Gorton, second baseman John Tommasini, and pitcher Taylor Starr, plus senior manager Kurt Lupinski. A ceremony honoring them and their families will be held on the field about 15 minutes before game time.
There will be a youth theme on the mound though, as Oregon will go with freshman RHP Jake Reed (6-3, 3.06 ERA). Oregon St. will counter with another freshman, LHP Jace Fry (5-3, 2.47 ERA).
Reed hasn't seen the hill since May 13, when he allowed only 4 hits in 7 innings, though he did give up 2 walks and 2 runs, in Oregon's 4-2 win over USC in the middle game of their last Pac-12 series.
Fry went 7 2/3 innings Saturday, but left with 2 runners in scoring position, and left trailing 5-4 at Washington St., in a game the Cougars ultimately won 9-5, on a walk off grand slam home run. Fry didn't figure in the decision for the second week in a row, in a Saturday game in which the Beavers couldn't win despite getting a quality start by Fry, who has the best ERA on the staff.