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Cougars Rally Denies Beavers Pac-12 Title

Cougars Rally Denies Beavers Pac-12 Title

The Oregon State Beavers were denied a chance to clinch at least a share of the Pac-12 baseball title when Washington State overcame a late 8-1 deficit to win 10-9 in 11 innings.

The Cougars trailed 8-1 after seven innings but scored four runs in the 8th and four more in the 9th. Jason Monda tied the game 9-9 with a one-out homer in the ninth.

In the top of the eleventh, WSU scored what proved to be the winning run on a 2-out error by OSU second-baseman Andy Peterson. It was the Beavers' 4th error of the game and proved costly.

The Beavers threatened to pull out a come-from-behind victory, loading the bases with one out in the bottom of the eleventh.  However, Jake Rodriguez grounded into a game-ending 6-4-3 double-play giving the Cougars a stunning victory over the nation's 3rd-ranked (USA Today) team.

For much of the game, Oregon State appeared to be on its way to clinching a share of the Pac-12 baseball championship. But after leading 7-0 after six innings and 8-1 after seven, the Beaver relief pitching suffered a complete meltdown giving up four runs in back-to- back innings. 

The Cougars late rally prevented OSU ace Matt Boyd from earning a much-deserved victory. Boyd surrendered only one run in seven innings of work. He allowed just 4 hits and walked only one. Boyd left the game with Oregon State holding a comfortable 8-1 lead.

Instead of clinching at least a share of the conference crown, OSU's Pac-12 lead was trimmed to just one game over Oregon.  The Ducks won 6-2 at Utah to pull within one game of the Beavers with two games to play.  UCLA can also pull within one game of the lead with a win at Stanford.  As of this writing, the Bruins lead the Cardinal 1-0 in the fifth.

The Beavers and Cougars will play the second game of their series Saturday afternoon.

 

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