Mandatory Credit: Dave Weaver-USA Today Sports
The Oregon State Beaver’s season came to an end Monday night after being defeated by the UC-Irvine Anteaters for a second time in three days in the Corvallis Regional. The Anteaters will advance to the Stillwater, Okla. Super Regional to face the Oklahoma State Cowboys.
Had Oregon State been able to complete their late inning shot at redemption, Oklahoma State would be bound for a Corvallis Super Regional.
The Beavers struck first, taking a 1-0 lead in the third inning. Logan Ice and Trever Morrison both singled before Jeff Hendrix pushed a run across the plate with a fielder’s choice RBI.
UC-Irvine answered back, tying the game at one apiece in the fifth and then added two more in the sixth to push the deficit to 3-1 in favor of the Anteaters. Beaver starter Jake Thompson pitched tough through five and one third innings, giving up three runs and striking out two in the losing effort. It was the Florence, Ore. freshman’s first start since April 1 against Portland.
Trent Shelton, Brandon Jackson, and Max Engelbrekt were all called upon to bring the two-run sixth inning to a close. Head Coach Pat Casey then tabbed Friday night starter Andrew Moore to finish the final three frames.
With two down in the eighth, Nick Rulli pinch-hit for senior second-baseman Andy Peterson, and drove a triple off the left field fence. He would score on a wild pitch with Michael Conforto at the plate. Conforto would go on to single, but a Dylan Davis fly out would end the inning and the rally.
Andrew Moore struck out the side to give the Beavers one final chance to extend the 2014 season and an air of optimism began to swell around the possibility of a ninth inning comeback for Oregon State.
Senior Kavin Keyes led off the inning with a single, and a fly out later, Logan Ice walked, which brought the go-ahead run to the plate in Caleb Hamilton. The freshman from Woodinville, Wash. battled until a full count, but then grounded into the lethally fatal 6-4-3 double play, ending the Beavers season.
2014 was a remarkable year for Oregon State despite the early exit. The team repeated as conference champions for the first time since the 2005-2006 seasons and attained its first number one national ranking since 2007. Pat Casey notched his forth consecutive 40+ win season in Corvallis. Ben Wetzler, Andrew Moore, and Jace Fry all combined to makeup what is unquestionably a top five pitching staff all time in program history. Michael Conforto, Dylan Davis, and others await the call of the majors as another crop of Beavers say farewell to the friendly confines of Goss Stadium. Here’s to another great year in 2015 -TH