It was an amazing afternoon for baseball at PK Park. The Ducks(11-5) finally broke through vs #2 Vanderbilt with two outs in the eighth inning Oregon rallied to take the lead and win 7-5 over the Commodores.
Freshman Cole Irvin went 7 1/3 for the Ducks at one point sitting down ten in a row. He gave up four hits and four runs with five strikeouts. Closer Jimmie Sherfy came in to close out the game for his first victory on the season, giving up two hits, an earned run and striking out three.
After losing the first two games of the series Oregon’s batters showed some patience during the rally. Senior J.J. Altobelli and Baumgarner both drew two out walks during the inning. Vanderbilt had four pitching changes within a matter of about ten minutes, leading to some grumbles from the crowd. The Commodores starting catcher Spencer Navin was also injured in the inning chasing after a wild pitch. He was replaced by Chris Harvey.
At the dish Oregon was led by Centerfielder Scott Heineman(1 run, 2 hits, 2 RBIs), First Baseman Ryan Healy(2 runs, 2 hits), and Leftfielder Brett Thomas(1 run, 2 hits, 2 RBI’s).
The Ducks now look ahead to some midweek baseball and host Texas State at PK Park on Tuesday at 6pm and Wednesday at 6pm before heading to Southern California to begin the Pac 12 schedule with USC on Friday.
There are still questions surrounding this team, and if the wouldn’t have rallied Sunday afternoon, they would be more pressing. The victory Sunday will quiet the talk….for now. Remember this. Baseball teams endure long seasons and one series does not make a season. It would have been nice for the Ducks to play the best baseball of the season against the #2 team in the country, but it was not to be. The Pac 12 stretch starting the weekend will be very challenging with several teams being contenders for the Pac 12 Baseball title. Oregon State is ranked in the Top 5 in the country, and USC and Stanford have solid staffs in place.
Solid challenges lie ahead for Oregon.
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