Huge fourth inning leads to Beaver comeback

Oregon State University softball players cheer after teammate Madyson Clark hit a home run at Kelly Field on Friday, April 26.
Oregon State University softball players cheer after teammate Madyson Clark hit a home run at Kelly Field on Friday, April 26.
Fern Barber

After trailing for the first three innings of the game, a bases-clearing double by Abby Doerr extended the Beavers’ first lead, taking game two, and the series victory after the 6-3 win.

“I was trying to think about nothing,” Doerr said about her preparation for the at-bat. “I usually try to sing a song in my head, and today it was my walk up song.”

During the at-bat was a completely different story.

“I really don’t remember it, usually I blackout in my at-bats,” Doerr said.

Oregon State Beavers softball played game two of three against the Utah Utes on Saturday, April 27, at Kelly Field.

The OSU starting pitcher Logan Hulon got into trouble early, allowing two runs in the first inning, as the Utes took a 2-0 lead, but finished off the inning strong to contain the damage. The second run came from an ill-advised throw by right fielder Eliana Gottlieb who got credited with the error.

Left-handed pitcher Sarah Ladd started on the mound for the Utes. She allowed a hit to center fielder Madison Simon, but then finished off the inning blanking the Beavers to end the first inning.

Hulon recorded her first, and only, strike out of the game in the second, also allowing a double to center, but getting out of the inning without any runs allowed.

“I was really just leaning on my team,” Hulon said. “I kinda struggled in the first inning, so just leaning on them to have my back.”

The Beavers scored their first run after back-to-back hits by Madyson Clark and A. Doerr, followed by an error by Utah catcher Melendez, who threw the ball into the outfield trying to secure the out after Paige Doerr’s bunt.

Charity Sevaaetasi got awarded first base after being hit by a pitch to load the bases. Grace Messmer grounded into a fielder’s choice, as the out was recorded at home, and the Beavers ended up only scoring one run when they had bases loaded, no outs, to close the gap, 2-1.

The fourth inning started with a close call, and after a review confirmed that OSU batter Savanah Whatley was indeed safe at first, Messmer bunted her and Escobar over who led off the inning with a single.

After the bunt, the Utes went to their bullpen and brought in right-hander Taylor Jacobs, who walked back-to-back batters which tied the game at two apiece. She followed that up with a fielder’s choice, getting the runner out at home, but then threw a wild pitch when facing the next batter.

This brought in a run, giving the Beavers their first lead of the game, 3-2. After walking the batter, Jacobs was pulled for Mariah Lopez, not even lasting a full inning.

A. Doerr came to the plate and fought, until eventually winning the battle, striking a bases clearing double to right. Her sister singled to left, putting runners on the corners before Escobar lined out to end the five run inning for the Beavs, who now lead 6-2.

A rare oddity happened in the fifth, when a ground ball was hit to the second baseman. She went to tag the runner, who ran through her glove and knocked it off. Since she didn’t have the ball anymore, the runner was safe.

The Utes ended up scoring one run this inning, but the Beavers still held a 6-3 lead. The inning ended on a diving catch by right fielder Gottlieb, who made sure to show everyone the ball when she got off the ground.

The rest of the game was a scoreless affair, as Hulon finished off the last batter to secure another complete game in her career.

The Beavers will face the Utes one more time in the series at noon on Sunday, April 28 at Kelly Field.

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