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Oregon State Baseball: Beavers Win Game 1 Over Utes 4-3

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The Beavers strike out 11 in a close win over Utah.

2018 NCAA Division I Men’s Baseball Championship - Game 3 Photo by Justin Tafoya/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Oregon State picked up their sixth win a row with a 4-3 win over the Utah Utes in their series opener. Jack Washburn got the start, but Mitch Verburg, who came in in relief in the fourth, picked up the win, his first of the season. The Beavers improve to 19-5 overall and 6-1 in conference play.

The Beavers grabbed the first run of the game in the bottom of the first, when a Garret Forrester double scored Micah McDowell. The 1-0 lead held for a few innings, until Utah’s Jayden Kiernan hit a single to center that scored two runs, giving the Utes a 2-1 lead. Utah held that lead for awhile, until Oregon State put together a big bottom of the fifth.

Singles from Micah McDowell and Ryan Ober, and a walk from Garret Forrester, loaded the bases before the Utes recorded an out. A single from Jake Dukart scored McDowell and tied the game, and then a line out from Troy Claunch scored Ober and gave the Beavers the lead. A couple batters later, a wild pitch allowed Forrester to reach home, giving Oregon State a 4-2 lead after five.

That would be the last run OSU got, so the pitching and defense was going to have to be solid to hold the win. The Utes managed a couple more hits over the next few innings, but didn’t put together a real scoring push until the top of the ninth.

That inning Jake Mulholland came in to save the game. He got a quick first out with a ground ball to Utah’s Vinny Zavolta, but walked his next two batters. He struck out Utah’s Christopher Rowan Jr. for the second out, but then gave up a single to Shea Kramer that scored a run, bringing the Utes to within one. Mulholland didn’t sweat however, and forced a fielder’s choice on the next batter to pick up his seventh save of the season, and a win for the Beavers.

Game 2 between Utah and Oregon State is set for tomorrow at 5:35 PM PT. A live stream of the game will be airing on pac-12.com.