To say that Arizona was firing on all cylinders Friday night would be an understatement, as the Wildcats opened their series with Oregon State with an 18-0 win, thanks to a complete game performance by Kurt Heyer and a 6th inning in which Arizona scored a season high 12 runs.
"It's baseball, sometimes momentum just gets the best of you and we just happened to be on the right side of it tonight," said UA head coach Andy Lopez.
What was supposed to be a pitchers' duel turned into one of the most lopsided affairs college baseball will have this season. Oregon State starting pitcher Sam Gaviglio entered the game regarded as one of the nation's premium arms, boasting a 0.39 ERA and a perfect 5-0 record. However, Arizona really didn't seem to care, as the offense touched up Gaviglio for 10 runs (four of them earned) in five innings.
The Wildcats were able to take advantage of sloppy play by the Beavers starting in the 4th frame with the bases loaded. Jett Bandy reached second base on two consecutive Oregon State throwing errors, which led to Arizona's first two runs of the night. The Wildcats would go on to score two more runs in the inning and a couple more in the fourth, to make it a 6-0 contest heading to the 6th frame. But the onslaught was just beginning.
The Wildcats began the inning with what looked to be a harmless infield single by Alex Mejia, but after a passed ball and dropped pop up, Arizona would have its first run of the inning. And that run would soon turn into 12, as the Wildcats sent 17 men to the plate and saw five different Oregon State pitchers in the inning.
"Man it feels good, just racking up hit after hit after hit," said Jett Bandy, who picked up three of his 6 RBIs in that 6th inning. "It's really nice to just keep pouring on the runs when you can."
Heyer returned to take the mound in the seventh and took care of the rest. He sat down nine Beavers in a row to end the game and clinch his first complete game shutout of his career.
"If my guys put up an 18 spot up for me I don't want to go out and fail them," said Heyer. "I feel like, okay you guys gave me 18 runs, the least I can do is go out and give you zeros in return."
Oregon State entered the game as the Pac-10 leaders in fielding percentage, but the Wildcats will reclaim that title at least for now, as the Beavers committed a season high five errors Friday night.
Arizona can earn its first series win over the Beavers since 2007 with a win Saturday afternoon.
Wildcats cruise in series opener
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