(Official release from OSU)
CORVALLIS, Ore. – On Friday night, the top-ranked Oregon State baseball team used some ninth-inning magic to open the series versus Utah with a win.
On Saturday afternoon, it was 16th-inning magic to send the Beavers to their 22nd consecutive win.
Adley Rutschman hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 16th to send Oregon State to a 5-4 victory at Goss Stadium at Coleman Field.
The season-best 3,284 in attendance at Saturday’s game went home happy due to a two-run 16th inning that saw the Beavers overcome a late Utah lead, made possible by Dallas Carroll’s solo home run in the top half of the inning.
Steven Kwan opened the 16th with a bunt single, and moved to second when Michael Gretler bunted him over. Jack Anderson tied the game at four when he tripled down on the right field line on a 3-2 pitch. The Utes then intentionally walked Cadyn Grenier and Zak Taylor to load the bases for Rutschman, who hit a deep fly to center off Utah reliever Chase Bauerle to win the game.
The victory pushed Oregon State to a 27-1 overall record and 11-0 mark in Pac-12 Conference play, while Utah dropped to 12-15 overall and 3-8 against league foes.
The Beavers can tie the Pac-12 record for consecutive victories with a win in the series finale Sunday. Arizona State’s 1988 squad holds the mark.
Jake Mulholland, the third OSU pitcher on the day, worked a season-long 6 2/3 innings, allowing two hits and a run with two strikeouts. He picked up the win to improve to 4-0 on the year.
Bauerle was charged with the loss after 4 2/3 innings of relief. He dropped to 0-1 after allowing two hits and two runs.
Opening OSU’s First
Nick Madrigal has opened Oregon State’s offensive attack on a high note in each game of the series thus far. On Friday, he doubled in the first, and later scored. On Saturday, the sophomore tripled down the third base line, scoring when Christian Donahue doubled. Madrigal has hit safely in 19 of his last 20 games.
Bryce Fehmel made his seventh start of the season Saturday, allowing four hits and two runs in 6 1/3 innings, giving him five quality starts this season. He did not figure in the decision after exiting in a 2-2 tie. OSU’s starters have now thrown 175 2/3 innings this season, allowing 118 hits, 37 earned runs and 45 walks while striking out 160. The starting staff has combined for a 1.90 earned run average and 0.93 WHIP (walks plus hits per inning pitched).
The win Saturday marked Oregon State’s second by one run after taking the opener, 5-4. The Beavers are 7-0 in one-run games this season, with a 4-0 record at Goss Stadium. Four of the Beavers’ five Pac-12 wins at Goss Stadium this season have been of the walkoff variety.
Saturday’s game marked the first extra-inning game for the Beavers this season. For the Utes, it was their second. The game is the longest in the Pac-12 Conference this season, surpassing a 13-inning game between California and Gonzaga on March 4 in Berkeley. The 16-inning game marked the Beavers’ longest since playing 16 against UCLA in 2010, losing that game 3-1.
Eisert and Mulholland
Relievers Brandon Eisert and Jake Mulholland combined to hold the Utes to six hits and two runs over 9 2/3 innings. They’ve combined for three wins and a save in three games this week. They’ve tossed 17 innings of work over the three games, allowing 13 hits and four runs while striking out 19.
Oregon State and Utah conclude the three-game series Sunday at Goss Stadium, with a 1:05 p.m. PT first pitch. The first 250 fans to Goss will receive a pin commemorating Oregon State’s 2007 National Championship.