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Grant Watson (Photo by Don Liebig)
No. 2 Oregon State Defeats UCLA Baseball, 9-3
By: UCLA Athletics

The UCLA Baseball team was defeated by No. 2 Oregon State on Saturday night, falling to the Beavers by a score of, 9-3, at Goss Stadium in Corvallis, Ore.

Andrew Moore (5-3) picked up the win for the Beavers after tossing 6.2 innings and giving up three runs on 10 hits. Moore struck out three as well. Junior Grant Watson (4-8) suffered the loss for UCLA, allowing five runs (two earned) on eight hits and striking out five in six innings pitched.

Oregon State took the early lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first. After the Jeff Hendrix and Andy Peterson reached via a single and an error respectively to start the inning, Watson recovered to get the next two batters to bring up Gabe Clark. The Beavers executed a double steal and Clark hit a single to right to bring home the runners to put Oregon State ahead, 2-0.

The Bruins would get one back in the top of the third though, as with two outs sophomore Ty Moore sent the first pitch he saw from Andrew Moore over the fence in right for a solo home run, cutting the deficit to 2-1. However, the Beavers would bring their lead back up to two in the bottom half of the inning. With two outs and Hendrix on second, Dylan Davis roped a double to left-center, scoring Hendrix and making the score 3-1, Oregon State.

UCLA continued to battle and would plate another run in the top of the fourth to once again cut into Oregon State’s lead. Sophomore Christoph Bono led off the frame with a single up the middle before moving up to second on a sacrifice bunt by freshman Luke Persico. Sophomore Justin Hazard then stepped in and laced a ground-rule double past Clark at first, scoring Bono and bringing the Bruins to within one.

Yet again Oregon State came back with a run of its own in the bottom of the fifth to take a two-run lead. With two outs and Peterson on first, Davis chopped one back to Watson on the mound. Watson gathered it cleanly, but couldn’t get the ball out of his glove, allowing Davis to reach on the error. Clark then came to the plate and hit a RBI single back up the middle to score Peterson, giving the Beavers a 4-2 advantage.

After a scoreless sixth inning, the Bruins threatened in the top of the seventh as they went looking for the tying runs. Sophomore Trent Chatterton and senior Aaron Weimer hit back-to-back singles to put runners at first and second with one out. Freshman Brett Stephens flew out for the second out of the inning, but Ty Moore drew a walk to load the bases for junior Shane Zeile. Oregon State went to the bullpen, bringing in Zack Reser to face Zeile. On a 1-2 count, Reser hit Zeile with a pitch to bring in another run for the Bruins, cutting the Oregon State lead back down to one. The next batter was freshman Nick Kern, who pinch-hit for senior Kevin Williams after Williams had to leave the game with an injury in the sixth. The Beavers went to Brandon Jackson out of the bullpen to face Kern and Jackson was able to strike him out swinging to end the inning and keep Oregon State ahead.

The Beavers went on to score five runs in the bottom half of the inning to give themselves a six-run cushion. Watson allowed a leadoff single to Hendrix and was removed in favor of freshman Grant Dyer. Dyer struck out Peterson before walking Conforto and giving way to sophomore Jake Ehret. Ehret’s first batter was Davis, who hit a single up the middle to score Hendrix and put runners on the corners with one out. Clark then hit a sacrifice fly on the next at-bat to score Conforto, giving Oregon State a 6-3 lead. After Ehret surrendered back-to-back walks to Logan Ice and Caleb Hamilton to load the bases once again, Nick Rulli came to the plate and hit an infield single off of junior Max Schuh to score Davis and make it 7-3, Beavers. Trever Morrison then hit a two-run single to center to make the score 9-3 before Schuh got Hendrix to fly out to left to end the inning.

The Bruins failed to score in their half of the eighth and ninth innings and Oregon State went home with the 9-3 win.

Hazard and Zeile led the UCLA offense, logging two hits and a RBI apiece while Chatterton and Bono each recorded a hit and a run.

UCLA (23-24-1, 10-13 Pac-12) and Oregon State (37-8, 19-4 Pac-12) will finish their three-game set tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m. live on the Pac-12 Networks. Sophomore Cody Poteet (3-3, 3.90 ERA) will take the bump for the Bruins.

Game Notes: Shane Zeile logged his team-leading 19th multi-hit game of the season with his 2-3 effort tonight and is now hitting .330 in Pac-12 play…Grant Watson pitched at least six innings for the 10th time in 13 starts this season…Watson picked off his Pac-12 leading fifth base runner of the season in the game, picking off Gabe Clark in the first inning…Ty Moore’s home run in the third inning was UCLA’s first home run since Nick Kern’s on April 17 at Utah and the seventh on the season for the Bruins…UCLA put at least one runner on base in seven of the nine innings tonight…tonight’s game time of 3:48 was the second-longest nine-inning game the Bruins have played this year.

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