Oregon State baseball continues to struggle as the regular season winds down. Friday night the Beavers fell to the UCLA Bruins 7-4, giving the Bruins a series win after their 4-1 win Thursday evening. The loss drops the Beavers to 40-13 overall, and 19-10 in conference play.
It also means the Stanford Cardinal will at least claim a share of the Pac-12 Championship. Stanford beat USC 7-1 Friday night, and depending on the outcome of the rest of this weekend’s games could win the conference outright. Just a few weeks ago the Beavers had the division on lock down and were ranked by some as the best team in the nation. Things have changed rapidly.
UCLA scored first Friday night, when a wild pitch from Jacob Kmatz allowed Jake Palmer to score in the top of the first. Oregon State answered right back, with a three run home run from Jacob Melton in the bottom of the first gave the Beavers a 3-1 lead.
UCLA would take the lead right back with their own three run homer, from Carson Yates in the top of the second. Oregon State responded in the bottom of the third with a solo home run from Justin Boyd, tying things up 4-4.
That would be the last scoring from the Beavers Friday night. UCLA grabbed the lead in the top of the sixth when a Palmer single scored Kenny Oyama. Then with the Beavers on the ropes in the top of the ninth, the Bruins added a pair of insurance runs to take a 7-4 lead.
They didn’t need those runs, as the Beaver batters could not capitalize on the opportunities they’d have. The Beavers put runners in scoring position in each of the final three innings, but were unable to put any more runs up on the scoreboard.
Oregon State will try to at least salvage one game out of the series tomorrow afternoon, with Game 3 against UCLA starting at 12:00. They’ll have one last chance to make a case for the NCAA for hosting a superregional, so lets hope the team finds its footing.