Once again, the Ducks fell behind early, this time in the first inning, and were unable to muster any runs to respond. The lone run came when third baseman Mitchell Tolman was unable to handle a two-out routine ground ball, allowing UCLA's Eric Filia to score.
"The bottom line is, we're a pretty good one-run team, but they're better," said Oregon head coach George Horton.
Tolman mishandled another ball in the sixth inning for his fourth error of the series. Tolman had just one error entering the weekend.
"He's trying too hard," said Horton of the freshman third baseman. "You could see him shaking his head a little bit on his at bats. Feeling sorry for yourself or moping around, won't make the game easier for yourself. He's showing a bit of his age I guess, in that matter."
Like Friday, Oregon would have its opportunities late, stranding runners in scoring position in the sixth, seventh and eighth inning. The seventh was perhaps the Ducks best opportunity to score, as Tyler Baumgartner opened the inning with a double, but neither pinch hitter Ryan Hambright or J.J. Altobelli were able to bring him home following a Connor Hofmann sacrifice bunt that put him on third.
"We were better tonight though, I asked the guys to compete a little bit instead of complain about what happened. I thought we took better responsibility," Horton said.
Horton saw that competition in the eighth with Aaron Payne aggressiveness on the base path. After drawing a hit by pitch, Payne attempted to steal second four times (the first three negated by foul balls) before succeeding and taking the base. But Payne's relentlessness would cost the Ducks the tying run, when he was caught at third base on a Ryon Healy walk. Tolman would hit a single on the next at-bat that would've scored Payne.
"He got the green light to run, like a lot of guys do in that spot. Obviously he thought he had a good enough jump, but he didn't.
"I kind of like the fact that we were going for it. The fact that we weren't sitting back and hoping for something to happen. We were trying to make something happen," he said.
Fresham Cole Irvin went the distance, holding UCLA to just seven batters on base, but took the loss despite the performance.
"That was one of his best outings just on pitches that were called. He had all four pitches going and certainly gave us every chance to win."
The Ducks and Bruins finish the series Sunday at noon at PK Park.