OSU Softball ends regular season with win over Utah

Matthew Brooks, Sports Contributor

Oregon State Softball won the final game of their regular season the OSU Softball Complex on Saturday afternoon, with a final score of 4-2.

This game concluded regular season play for the Beavers, giving them an overall record of 26-19 and 8-14 in conference play.

It didn’t take long for Utah to get on the board, with early runs leaving Oregon State down 2-0 in the top of the third inning. However, the Beavers responded in the bottom of the fourth.

A single by senior outfielder Shelby Weeks put a runner in scoring position, as a throwing error allowed her to advance to second. The next at-bat, senior outfielder Jessica Garcia hit a single up the middle, allowing Weeks to score.

“I try and just read my situation because Shelby was on second base, so I knew I had to keep the ball on the right side of the field — that was my tendency going up to bat,” Garcia said. “It just so happened that it went up the middle so it worked into everyone’s favor.”

In the bottom of the sixth inning, the seniors came up big once more. A Weeks single was followed with another by Garcia, putting runners on first and second. Sophomore designated player Camryn Ybarra then walked, loading the bases for freshman infielder Frankie Hammoude, who smacked a ball to the gap in right-center field for a base-clearing double that gave Oregon State a 4-2 lead.

“I have a tendency to try to do too much and try to put the ball over the fence, so I was really focused on just making contact and hitting the ball hard somewhere,” Hammoude said. “I knew Shelby and Jess are fast, so if I put something small in the outfield they were going to score.”

With the Beavers on defense at the top of the seventh, Hammoude got the force out at first after fielding a hard-hit ground ball and then throwing to second for the tag — leaving Utah with no runners on base and two outs.

“Frankie’s been huge for us all year long, so I’m not really surprised for her to do that. There’s a reason why she’s on the junior national team,” Head Coach Laura Berg said. “You know, Frankie is just so fun loving and easy going that she just is like ‘okay, I’ll go make the play.’”

After the double play left the Utes down to their final out, they once again built some momentum and loaded the bases. As she had done multiple times throughout the game, sophomore pitcher Mariah Mazon once again worked her way out of the jam, striking out one final batter and ending the game at 4-2 in favor of Oregon State.

“She is a force to be reckoned with, she wants the ball. A little off this weekend, but she’s thrown a majority of the innings, you know there’s the first time of the year she’s been off,” Berg said. “I’m going to go with that kid any day.”

Mazon gave up nine hits and was charged with one earned run, striking out seven Utes and finishing with her 17th win of the season.

The Beavers now have to wait on the NCAA selection committee to decide whether or not they will make the postseason.

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