Baseball goes 2-1 against Utah

Brian Rathbone Sports Contributor

The Oregon State baseball team took two of three games to win the season series against the Utah Utes in Salt Lake City over the weekend. The Beavers won the first two games but were unable to complete the sweep.

With the two victories, the Beavers (26-10, 8-7 Pac-12) move into third place in the Pac-12 standings, one game behind the Utes (14-22, 9-6) and the Washington Huskies.

In the series opener, the top of the Beavers lineup provided the spark for the offense. Sophomore leftfielder Christian Donahue and freshman second basemen Nick Madrigal went a combined 7-for-10 and scored five runs. Junior catcher Logan Ice drove in three runs in the Beavers 10-4 victory over the Utes.

Senior Travis Eckert got the nod on Friday and earned his fifth win of the season after scattering eight hits and four runs in eight innings of work.

Due to expected thunderstorms in the weather forecast in Salt Lake City, the final game was moved from Saturday to Friday, the Beavers and the Utes played a doubleheader on Friday.

The first game of the doubleheader on Friday was scoreless through the first six innings of play in game one, until freshman designated Trevor Larnach RBI double broke the scoreless tie. Sophomore right fielder Jack Anderson drove in two more runs in the eighth inning.

That was more than enough offense for pitcher Luke Heimlich. Heimlich tossed a career high 8 1/3 innings, surpassing his previous career high of 7 2/3 innings two weeks ago against Arkansas State.

The sophomore lefthander took a shutout into the ninth inning before giving up a solo home run. Heimlich earned his fifth win of season after allowing six hits while striking out four Utah batters in the Beavers 7-2 victory.

The Utes were able to jump out on junior right hander Jake Thompson in the final game of the series, scoring five of their seven runs in the first two innings. Thompson’s day was done after allowing five runs on three hits and three walks in 1 1/3 innings of work.

The Beavers would battle back. Sophomore designated hitter Michael Grettler hit his first career home run in the fourth inning, after nearly missing a grand slam in his first at bat. Donahue had his second multi-hit of the series finishing 3-for-5 on the day with a run and an RBI.

As a team, Oregon State collected 12 hits and drew seven walks, but could not drive them in, leaving 14 runners on base. After the fourth inning, the Beavers could not manage a run, losing 7-6.

The Beavers will travel south to take on the Oregon Ducks in a nonconference matchup in Eugene on Tuesday, before returning home for a three-game series against the Stanford Cardinal opens on Friday.