The 2014 baseball season came to an abrupt end during Regional play, but there was still some good to go with the bad. We break down the ups and downs in this post.
Best Win: 1-0 vs Washington, 5/17
After being dealt a 4-2 loss the night before against Washington, both teams entered game two of the three game set tied atop the Pac-12 standings. It would take a nail biting, thrilling affair to reclaim first place by themselves. Southpaw Jace Fry was brilliant, throwing nine innings of shutout baseball. He struck out nine and continually worked out of any trouble he got himself in.
But on that Saturday afternoon, the day would belong to freshman Logan Ice. Dylan Davis led off the bottom of the ninth with a single as the Beavers tried to break the 0-0 tie. He was sacrificed to second, then Michael Howard was intentionally walked. That's when starter Tyler Davis, who entered the day with a 10-1 record, was lifted for usual closer Troy Rallings. Rallings irked some Beaver fans the night before when he danced off the diamond and waved to Oregon State supporters leaving the stadium after closing out the Husky victory.
Ice didn't give him much chance to bark the next day. The catcher drove the first pitch he saw to the fence in right center field, easily bringing home the winning run in Davis from second. The win set up a rubber match for the de-facto conference title on Sunday, and the Beavers would win that one as well. In another shutout.
Best Moment: Jace Fry No Hits Northern Illinois
Overshadowed by a big win for Oregon State's men's basketball team against Arizona State earlier in the day, Jace Fry's no-hitter against a bad Northern Illinois team might not have gotten the attention it deserved. Fry baffled Husky hitters all afternoon and did it in quick fashion. The one hour, 46 minute game was the quickest in the history of Goss Stadium. Oregon State's bats weren't exactly lively, but did enough to plate two runs.
Worst Loss: 14-2 vs UC Irvine, 5/31
Coming off of a nailbiting win in its Regional opener the night before, tension was high in the winner's bracket game between Oregon State and UC Irvine. The Anteaters broke a scoreless tie in the fourth inning, scoring on a wild pitch by Fry. They would then score three runs on two sacrifice bunts in the next inning to break open the game.
Down 6-0 in the top of the eighth, the Beavers finally found their bats. Jeff Hendrix singled in a pair of runs to cut the deficit to four, then Oregon State loaded the bases with one out to bring the tying run to the plate. But both Dylan Davis and Gable Clark would produce weak at-bats, one resulting in a pop out and the other a strikeout looking. That would effectively end the game, but Irvine would make things ugly in the bottom half of the inning. Three runs would score on two RBI singles, another one on a sacrifice fly, and four more on a grand slam by Kris Paulino. When the smoke had cleared, the Anteaters led 14-2 and the only fans left in Corvallis were wearing blue and gold.
Worst Moment: Caleb Hamilton Hits Into Season-Ending Double Play
The fact that UC Irvine's second basemen didn't even touch the bag makes this even worst. A lot of people will say that doesn't matter, but they are wrong. It helped him get the ball to first quicker, beating Hamilton by a split second and ending the season. If the umpire had done his job, the Beavers would at least have runners at the corners, maybe the bases loaded, in a two run game.