UW 5, WSU 2

SEATTLE - Ty Afenir doubled twice and scored the go-ahead run in the bottom of the fifth inning as Washington beat archrival Washington State 5-2 in the middle game of a three game season-ending Pac-12 series at Husky Ballpark on a sunny 70 degree Saturday afternoon.

The Huskies (30-24, 13-16 Pac-12) won their second straight game against the Cougars (27-28, 11-18) and clinched the Apple Cup of baseball with only the series finale left to play.

Afenir came into the series with no doubles for the entire season but after getting his first double in Friday's series opener, he grounded a leadoff double down the left field line on a 1-2 pitch. Afenir moved to third on a sacrifice by Jayce Ray and scored on a safety squeeze by Joe Meggs. First baseman Taylor Ard charged the bunt and threw home to P.J. Jones, but Afenir just beat the tag to give the Huskies a 3-2 lead.

Washington made it 4-2 in the bottom of the sixth when Chase Anselment led off with a line double off the wall in left center, moved to third on a wild pitch and raced home when Trevor Mitsui swung and missed at strike three but the pitch got away from Jones for a passed ball.

In the bottom of the eighth the Huskies made it 5-2. With two outs, Andrew Ely walked on four pitches form reliever Anthony Drobnick. Erik Forgione pinch ran for Ely and moved to second on a base hit by BK Santy. Afenir then blooped a 1-2 pitch that dropped in shallow left for his second double, scoring Forgione.

Austin Voth set down the Cougars' second, third and fourth batters in order in the ninth to record his first save of the season. He retired Collin Slaybaugh on a grounder to short, struck out Ard looking on a questionable strike three pitch outside, and got Derek Jones to fly out to left for the final out. Zach Wright (3-1) earned the win with one and one thirds innings of scoreless relief. He did not walk or strike out a batter.

Opponents came into the game with a .311 batting average against Cougar starter J. D. Leckenby (4-7) and it looked like the Huskies might send him to the showers early when they scored a run on two hits in both the first and second innings.

In the first Jacob Lamb lined a 3-0 pitch into right center for a double and scored on a ground single to center to make it 1-0. In the next frame, the Huskies made it 2-0. Santy singled with two outs and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Afenir walked and Jayce Ray lined a single to left to score Santy. On the play Adam Nelubowich fielded the ball and threw on line to the plate but it bounced off the chest protector of PJ Jones.

Despite his trouble in the first two innings, Leckenby managed to go seven due mostly to a low pitch count. He threw only 86 pitches, giving up four runs, three earned, on seven hits. He walked one and struck out two.

Offensively three Huskies had multi-hit games. In addition to Afenir's 2 for 3 day, both Lamb and Santy finished 2 for 4 with a run scored.

The Huskies and Cougars return to the diamond for the series and season finale when they play at Husky Ballpark on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. Jeff Brigham will start for the Huskies against a pitcher to be determined.

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