Baseball Opens Season With St. Mary's

MORAGA - Calif. - Oregon baseball returned to the diamond for the first time in 28 years on Friday, and the Ducks left Louis Guisto Field with their first win in 28 years, defeating Saint Mary's 5-3.

Oregon's offense totaled five runs on 13 hits, while freshman left-hander Tyler Anderson recorded his first victory on the mound.

Anderson left the game with the lead after pitching 5.2 innings, allowing three runs, two earned, on eight hits and four walks, while striking out five.

Freshman KC Serna, junior Jett Hart and junior Curtis Raulinaitis provided the RBIs for Oregon, while Caleb Tommasini and Raulinaitis led the Ducks with three hits apiece.

"I have never been as prepared as I was today before a game," said Tommasini, who led off the game with an infield single. "Everything that was thrown at me, I expected it."

In the bottom of the ninth, just three outs away from Oregon's first victory of 2009, the Ducks brought on right-hander Drew Gagnier to close the game. The Ducks turned a 4-6-3 double play to end it, as Gagnier earned his first save at Oregon.

In the bottom of the seventh inning as Oregon led 5-3, an error in center field put Ryan Mulligan on second and moved Troy Channing to third for the Gaels. Junior reliever Geoff Nichols then loaded the bases by walking Ryan Young, before Oregon junior left-hander Ryan Fleckenstein took over on the mound.

On the first pitch, Fleckenstein got the Ducks out of the jam by picking an infield chopper to turn a 1-2-3 double play, ending the seventh inning and keeping the Gaels off the scoreboard.

"When you come in you have a lot of emotions on the mound," Fleckenstein said of his appearance. "The bases loaded and the ball game was on the line...I was just pumped."

A monster inning for Oregon in the fifth put the Ducks ahead for good. Oregon led off the inning with back-to-back singles from Danny Pulfer and Tommasini. A sacrifice fly from Raulinaitis scored Pulfer, while Serna came through with an RBI double, his second RBI of the game, to give the Ducks a 3-2 lead.

"They've worked awful hard and I am glad they were rewarded with a win," head coach George Horton said of his team after the game.

Hart then hit a base-clearing two-run triple to deep center field to score Rodriguez and Serna.

The Gaels took a short-lived 2-1 lead in the bottom of the third when Mulligan singled up the middle to score Greg Ditmer.

With two runners on for Oregon in the top of the third, Serna hit a hard single up the middle scoring Tommasini from second to even the game at 1-1.

Saint Mary's got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the first, on a two-out single from designated hitter Troy Channing that scored Greg Ditmer.

Brian Justice took the loss for the Gaels, surrendering five earned runs on nine hits in 5.0 innings of work.

Season Firsts
First pitch of game...1:56 p.m. by Saint Mary's right-hander Brian Justice
First hit of game...1:57 p.m. by Oregon senior and leadoff hitter left fielder Caleb Tommasni First Oregon pitch...2:05 p.m. by Oregon freshman left-hander Tyler Anderson
First Oregon assist and putout....2:05 p.m. Oregon freshman second baseman Danny Pulfer to sophomore first baseman Mitch Karraker First run surrendered...2:14 p.m., SMC designated hitter Troy Channing singled to right center, scoring Greg Ditmer
First strikeout...2:22 p.m., Anderson strikes out Anthony Aliotti looking
First strikeout swinging...2:34 p.m., Anderson strikes out Chris Murphy swinging
First Oregon walk...2:43 p.m. Caleb Tommasini walked by Brian Justice
First Oregon run...2:46 p.m., Tommasini scores from second on a single up the middle from freshman KC Serna
First Oregon error...2:55 p.m. KC Serna First Oregon sac fly...3:30 p.m., Raulinaitis sac fly to center scores Pulfer
First Oregon double, 3:31 p.m...KC Serna doubles down the left field line to score Tommasini First Oregon triple, 3:39 p.m....Jett Hart hits a two-run triple to center field scoring Rodriguez and Serna
First Double Play Turned, 4:34 p.m....Fleckenstein (p)-Rodriguez (c)-Hunter (1b)

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