Vanderbilt gave Oregon State all they had, but it wasn’t enough to get past the Beavers, as Oregon State prevailed 7-6 to advance to Super Regionals. In an incredibly tight contest that came down to the last out, Oregon State was able to rely on their biggest stars to secure the win.
The game started well for the Beavers, with Justin Boyd hitting a solo home run in the team’s first at bat of the day. Oregon State starter Jaren Hunter managed to hold onto that 1-0 lead for three innings, but in the top of the fourth he walked Vanderbilt batter Javier Vaz, and then gave up a two run homer to Spencer Jones, giving the Commodores a 2-1 lead.
Hunter walked the next batter, and then finally got the first out of the inning with a fielder’s choice. Ben Ferrer came in at that point, and managed to end the inning with no more damage done. It didn’t take long for the Beavers to tie things up; in the bottom of the fourth Jake Dukart doubled to get in scoring position, and then reached home plate thanks to a Kyle Dernedde single.
It didn’t take Vanderbilt long to get the lead back. In the top of the fifth Ferrer walked Enrique Bradfield Jr., who then stole second. Javier Vaz was then hit by a pitch, and then a double steal and a pair of Oregon State throwing errors got Bradfield across home plate, giving the Commodores a 3-2 lead.
The Beavers bounced back in the bottom of the fifth. After a Garret Forrester single, Jacob Melton hit a big home run over the left field wall to put Oregon State up 4-3. The Beavers kept the pressure on. After a Gavin Logan walk, a Jake Dukart single and Matthew Gretler being hit by a pitch, the bases were loaded. Kyle Dernedde then hit a single right over second base to score a pair of runners.
That forced a pitching change for the Commodores. After ending the fifth, it didn’t take long for Vanderbilt to get back into the game. In the top of the sixth Ferrer worked two quick outs, but a walk and a single gave Vandy a pair of runners. A Kyle Dernedde error on a ground ball allowed one of the runners to score, and another single got the Commodores to within one run. Reid Sebby came in to end the inning, with the Beavers clinging to a 6-5 lead.
MATTHEW GRETLER KISS IT GOODBYE!— Oregon State Baseball (@BeaverBaseball) June 6, 2022
The Beavers couldn’t get anything going in the bottom of the sixth, and in the top of the seventh Vanderbilt tied the game with a sacrifice fly from Calvin Hewett. The Beavers got the lead back in the bottom of the seventh with a solo home run from Matthew Gretler, but that’s all they would get despite loading the bases.
Hjerpe strikes out the side! pic.twitter.com/O9ppzWpzqz— Oregon State Baseball (@BeaverBaseball) June 6, 2022
Cooper Hjerpe came to the mound to get the final six outs of the game. Hjerpe struck out the side in the top of the eighth, and the Commodores were down to their last three outs. Oregon State couldn’t get much going in the bottom of the eighth, and Hjerpe stayed on the mound as the top of the ninth started.
Hjerpe walked the first batter he faced. Then Spencer Jones grounded out, getting the Beavers their first out but putting a runner on second. Hjerpe struck out the next batter, and down to their last out, Vanderbilt sent in Matthew Polk to pinch hit. Polk has been good this season, but couldn’t get past Hjerpe. He struck out swinging, ending the game in a 7-6 Beavers victory.
This weekend the Beavers will welcome the Auburn Tigers to Corvallis for the Super Regional. Auburn is the 14th overall seed in the NCAA Tournament, and emerged victorious from the Auburn regional. They took down UCLA 11-4 yesterday evening to clinch their spot in Supers. Game 1 is set for Friday, June 10th.