AGAIN THE Ducks put together a rally in the ninth. And again the Beavers shut the door. No. 4 Oregon…
Wetzler milestone comes in win over Ducks
OSU (29-8 overall, 12-4 Pac-12) scored single runs in the first, fifth and sixth innings. But it was hang-on time at the end.
Reliever Scott Schultz turned back an Oregon (31-11, 10-6) comeback bid in the ninth to give OSU their third straight conference win. Schultz came on with one out and the bases loaded in the ninth and got the final two outs to preserve Wetzler's milestone win with his third save of the season.
The Beavers assumed first place in the Pac-12 title race by .014 percentage points over Washington (14-5 Pac-12) after the Huskies fell 6-4 to Washington State in Seattle. OSU's winning percentage is .750; Washington's dropped to .736.
With the victory, OSU also won its seventh consecutive home conference game against the Ducks.
Center fielder Jeff Hendrix singled three times and scored twice, left fielder Michael Conforto doubled twice and drove in a run and third baseman Caleb Hamilton slammed his first career homer to spark OSU's offense.
Conforto raised his average to a team-best .420 while Hendrix bumped his 26 points to .389.
Wetzler scattered three hits over the first eight innings and pitched out of several jams. He stranded Ducks at second and third in the second inning. In the fifth he stranded a runner at third base by fanning leadoff hitter Aaron Payne and retiring A.J. Balata on a fly ball to center.
But Oregon did not go quietly in the ninth as a single by Kyle Garlick and a double by Nick Catalano put runners at second and third with no outs. Wetzler fanned Shawn Chase for the first out, but was replaced by Zack Reser after throwing a ball to Austin Grebeck on his 125th and final pitch.
Reser completed the walk to Grebeck to load the bases, and was replaced by Schultz. One run scored on pinch-hitter J.B. Bryant's soft ground out to second and Schultz then retired Payne on a fly ball to left to end the game.
The Beavers jumped ahead 1-0 in the first on a bases-loaded sacrifice fly by Dylan Davis, his team-leading 45th RBI. Conforto doubled in Hendrix to make it 2-0 in the fifth and Hamilton made it 3-0 with a long homer over the left-field fence in the sixth.
The season-high crowd of 3,121 raised the season total to 39,646in 15 openings, an average of 2,643per date. The Beavers have drawn 2,032 or more fans to every game.
The series resumes at 7:35 p.m. Saturday. The projected starters are right-handers Jeff Gold (9-0, 2.54) for Oregon and Andrew Moore (3-3, 2.96) for the Beavers. The series concludes at 1:03 p.m. Sunday.
BeaverFootball.com Recommended Stories
CIVIL WAR: Beavs could be down to one at RB
JUST A FEW weeks ago, Mike Riley was feeling pretty darned good about his running back depth. Now, headed into a must-win Civil War to extend their season, Oregon State could be down to just one.Read More
Rivalry Week on Scout
Build yourself a sky-high left-over turkey sandwich, cover it in a creamy sauce of hate, and get ready to scream!Read More
WTS: Are Beavs perplexing, or as expected?
ALL THE GOOD that was done in Oregon State's win the week before, the scribes say, was undone against the Huskies on Saturday night. Here's what they're saying ...Read More
2014 Pac-12 Roundup - Week 13
2014 CFN Final Roundup, recaps, standings and more.Read More
Outdoorsman's Gift Guide: Christmas 2014
Finding just the right present for that special someone can be a challenge, so we’ve compiled a wide variety of hunting, fishing and outdoor gifts that you—or Santa—can deliver this Christmas.Read More