Oregon State improved to 10-2 in the Pac-12 conference after a three-game sweep of Utah this weekend. In the three games, Oregon State outscored Utah 13-4. In game one on Friday, Oregon State scored a run in the first inning after shortstop Tyler Smith, who returned to the starting lineup after being out since March 17, singled down the right field line. He would eventually score the lone run on a Dylan Davis sac-fly as Oregon State beat Utah 1-0. Starter Matt Boyd improved to 7-1 after throwing a complete-game two-hitter. He struck out eight and only allowed two hits.
In game two on Saturday, Oregon State claimed the series victory with an 8-3 victory. Designated hitter Beau Day, who only had two hits coming into the season, went 4-4 on the day. Day singled four times, and knocked in two RBI. Beaver starter Andrew Moore also improved to 7-1 after pitching 6 and 2/3 innings. Moore allowed three runs on five hits and three walks. He struck out five.
In the series finale on Sunday, Beaver starter Ben Wetzler continued to improve after missing a significant portion of the season with a back injury. Wetzler pitched 6 and 1/3 innings while only allowing one run on three hits. He struck out eight and walked three. The Beavers were once again paced by designated hitter Beau Day. Day went 2-3 and drove in two RBI. Right fielder Ryan Barnes also had two hits as he extended his hit streak to ten games.
In the three games during the series, Oregon State only committed one error. They had been plagued by shaky defense since the injury to Smith. With Smith back in the fold, the Beavers are once again whole defensively.
Oregon State Sweeps Utah
Oregon State- 28-6, 10-2
Utah: 14-17, 4-11
Oregon at California
The Oregon Ducks were able to keep pace with Oregon State atop the Pac-12 after sweeping California over the weekend. Head coach George Horton elected to shake up the rotation as Tommy Thorpe, the normal Saturday starter, took the mound on Friday. Thorpe pitched 7 and 1/3 innings as the Ducks defeated the Bears 3-2. Thorpe allowed two runs on three hits and three walks. He struck out seven. Left fielder Brett Thomas and shortstop J.J. Altobelli led the Ducks with two hits apiece.
In game two on Saturday, Oregon defeated California by a final of 10-4. The Ducks hit four home runs in the game. Right fielder Scott Heineman accounted for two of the four homers as he knocked in four RBI. First baseman Ryon Healy hit his sixth home run of the season and left fielder Brett Thomas hit his first of the season. Freshman Cole Irvin improved to 7-1 after pitching five innings. Irvin allowed four runs on seven hits. He walked two while striking out two.
In the series finale on Sunday, junior Jake Reed made his first Sunday start of the season. Reed, who has made every Friday start so far for the Ducks, pitched 5 and 2/3 innings of one run ball as Oregon completed the sweep by a final of 5-4. Reed walked two and allowed five hits. Right fielder Scott Heineman hit his third home run of the series and led the Ducks with two RBI. Ryon Healy and Brett Thomas each went 3-5 on the day. California made it interesting in the bottom of the eighth inning after catcher Andrew Knapp hit his fifth home run of the season. The three-run blast pulled the Bears to within one. Oregon closer Jimmie Sherfy recorded the final out in the eighth inning, and then recorded his 11th save of the season, by finishing off the Bears in the ninth.
Oregon Sweeps California
Oregon: 27-8, 12-3
California: 16-19, 5-10
Arizona State at USC
Arizona State took two out of three from USC over the weekend. In game one on Friday, USC got the best of Arizona State behind six innings of one hit ball from Sean Silva. Silva, making the start in place of injured starter Bob Wheatley, improved to 1-1 on the year as the Trojans took game one by a final of 5-0. USC was led offensively by Greg Zebrack, who went 3-4 on the day. Four different Trojans had a lone RBI in the victory. Arizona State only notched one hit in the game.
In game two on Saturday, Arizona State bounced back with a 6-3 victory. Freshman starter Ryan Kellogg improved to 8-0 on the year behind a six inning performance. The lefty allowed two runs on eight hits. He walked three and struck out one. Center fielder Kasey Coffman had four hits on the day. Coffman hit a home run and had a triple to go along with his two singles, leaving him a double shy of the cycle. He knocked in three of the 6 RBI.
Arizona State claimed the series on Sunday, as the Sun Devils defeated the Trojans 6-5. Starter Alex Blackford improved to 4-0 on the year after pitching six innings. He allowed four runs, although only 1 of the runs was earned, on four hits. Blackford struck out five while walking one. Three Sun Devils had multi-hit games. Right fielder Trever Allen hit his sixth home run of the season. Freshman closer Ryan Burr recorded his seventh save of the season.
Arizona State wins the series 2-1.
USC: 13-22, 6-9
Arizona State: 22-10-1, 8-7
Washington at Stanford
The Stanford Cardinal won their third consecutive conference series over the weekend against Washington. In game one on Friday, the Husky bats got to Mark Appel early. Appel allowed three runs in the first two innings, but then he settled down to secure his six win of the season in the 7-5 Cardinal victory. Appel allowed four runs, three earned, over eight innings. He had seven strike outs and two walks. Designated hitter Justin Ringo, second baseman Danny Diekroeger, and third baseman Alex Blandino each had two hits to lead the Cardinal.
Saturday saw Washington record 16 hits in the Husky 11-3 victory. Center fielder Braden Bishop and right fielder Jayce Ray each recorded three hits. Designated hitter Michael Camporeale went 2-6 on the day and drove in four RBI. Washington starter Austin Voth improved to 4-4 after pitching eight innings of two run ball. He struck out nine and walked one.
In the series finale on Sunday, Stanford was able to secure the series victory behind a complete-game effort from starter John Hochstatter, as the Cardinal defeated Washington by a final of 12-2. Hochstatter, in returning from an injury, improved to 2-1 on the year after allowing two runs on seven hits. He walked two and had two strike outs. Stanford had three hit performances from first baseman Brian Ragira and second baseman Danny Diekroeger. Ragira hit his fourth home run of the season. Catcher Brant Whiting and left fielder Justin Ringo each drove in three RBI.
Stanford wins the series 2-1
Stanford: 19-11, 7-5
Washington: 9-24, 3-9
Arizona at Washington State
The Arizona Wildcats continued their hot conference play with a series victory against the Washington State Cougars. In game one on Friday, Washington State was leading 7-5 in the eighth inning when rain forced the teams to continue play Saturday. Once play resumed the next day, Washington State added two runs to secure a 9-5 victory. The Cougars were led by center fielder Austin Pernell, who had two hits and drove in two RBI. Cougar starter Jose Pistorese improved to 4-2 after only allowing two runs in six innings. He struck out four and did record a walk.
Arizona bounced back Saturday with a 6-5 victory. Things got very interesting in the ninth inning as Arizona held a four-run lead. Closer Mathew Troupe walked the bases loaded on three consecutive hitters. Troupe was then replaced by freshman Tyger Talley. Talley struck out the first batter he faced, but then issued a walk to cut the lead to three. An ensuing RBI fielder’s choice, followed by a wild pitch, made the score 6-5 with the tying run at third base. P.J. Jones was then hit by a pitch, putting the winning run on first. Talley struck out Jason Monda, the Cougar RBI leader, to end the game. Shortstop Kevin Newman had two hits and two RBI in the victory. Wildcat starter James Farris improved to 4-3 on the year after pitching 7 and 1/3 inning of one run ball. He had ten strike outs.
In the decisive series finale, Arizona took the series by a final of 7-3. Starter Tyler Crawford recorded his first complete-game in the victory. Crawford allowed three runs on nine hits. He struck out three and walked one in improving to 4-1 on the year. Second baseman Trent Gilbert had three hits in the winning effort. Designated hitter Riley Moore was 2-2 on the day with two RBI for Arizona.
Arizona wins the series 2-1
Arizona: 23-12, 8-7
Washington State: 18-15, 5-7
Loyola Marymount at UCLA
UCLA took two out of three from Loyola Marymount over the weekend. In game one on Friday, RHP Adam Plutko improved to 4-2 after striking out a career high eight batters in the Bruin 2-0 victory. Plutko pitched seven innings while only allowing three hits. Center fielder Brian Carroll was 1-3 on the day and drove in the only two RBI.
On Saturday, UCLA took the series with a win by a final of 3-1. Nick Vander Tuig improved to 5-3 after pitching 6 and 2/3 innings. He allowed one run on five hits and one walk. He struck out five. Right fielder Eric Filia-Snyder had two hits to lead the Bruins. Three different Bruins had an RBI.
The Bruins lost the series finale on Sunday as the Loyola Marymount Lions defeated the Bruins by a final of 4-1. Catcher Colton Plaia had three hits for the Lions.
UCLA Wins the Series 2-1
UCLA: 22-10, 7-5
1. Oregon State: 10-2
2. Oregon: 12-3
3. UCLA: 7-5
4. Stanford: 7-5
5. Arizona State: 8-7
6. Arizona: 8-7
7. Washington State: 5-7
8. USC: 6-9
9. California : 5-10
10. Utah: 4-11
11. Washington: 3-9
Takeaways from the Weekend
- There was no real shocker of the weekend. The top teams in the conference are starting to separate themselves from the rest of the pack. Oregon State and Oregon each completed a sweep against teams they should have taken care of. Both teams in Oregon appear to be the runaway favorites for the title.
- Oregon with an upcoming series against UCLA and Stanford. Both series will take place at PK Park in Eugene where Oregon is 15-3 this season. If Oregon can win both those series, they will certainly separate themselves from the rest of the conference. It will be a big weekend in Eugene for the Ducks.
- Arizona continues to win series’ after a 0-6 conference start. Don’t look now but the Wildcats control their own destiny in finishing in the upper half of the conference and securing a regional berth. Considering both Oregon teams standings in the conference, Arizona being swept by them doesn’t seem so bad. A big weekend coming up for Arizona as they take on Stanford in Palo Alto.
- John Hochstatter returning for Stanford. If the sophomore lefty can continue to pitch like he did against Washington, a 1-2 punch of Appel and Hochstatter could make for a difficult series when facing the Cardinal.
- Oregon shaking up the rotation a bit. Although all three starters remain intact, the order of the starting rotation changed against California. It could just be that head coach George Horton wanted his lefties, Thorpe and Irvin, facing the lefty bats of California before Reed. Or it could be a shakeup to get better matchups for Reed. It will be interesting to see if Horton returns to Reed on Friday, or if he keeps the lefty pair going on Friday and Saturday.