Oregon baseball shut out in home opener against UCLA

Oregon starter David Peterson suffered his fourth loss of the season in a 6-0 shutout to the UCLA Bruins on Thursday night.

He went seven innings allowing seven hits and four earned runs. Peterson added nine strikeouts to his season total, giving him 140 on the season.

The Bruins really got to Peterson, a projected first-round pick, in the third inning, when Peterson surrendered two walks and hit a batter. Then Peterson did something that was uncharacteristic of him all season — he allowed a walk that scored a Bruin run.

“Free bases obviously hurt you and they did tonight,” Peterson said. “That’s why they’re so important not to give them. You can see they hurt, UCLA scored, and that was the difference in the game right there.”

Later in the inning, a two-RBI single gave the Bruins a three-run lead. Peterson needed some output from his offense, but it just never happened for the Ducks.

“He’s had a spectacular year,” head coach George Horton said. “It was our turn to pick him up offensively and we didn’t do that.”

The Oregon offense was facing their own challenge from the pitching mound Thursday night.

UCLA’s starting pitcher Griffin Canning, also a projected first-round pick, shut down the Ducks all night. Canning allowed just four hits and struck out 10 in a complete game shutout.

“He has four pitches he can command and throw at any count,” Kyle Kasser said. “He showcased his first round talent and that’s why he’s a good pitcher.”

His record improved to 7-3 on the season. Canning didn’t allow an Oregon batter to reach second base until the ninth inning.

“He made good pitches but we still have to put better swings on balls,” Kasser said. “There’s no excuse for that.”

Kasser extended his hitting streak to 13 games, which is third longest in program history.

Morgan McCullough finished the game 2-for-4. Tim Susnara was the only other Duck to get a hit Thursday, finishing the game 1-for-3.

The Ducks and Bruins play game two of their three-game series Friday night at 6 p.m. at PK Park. Matt Mercer will get the start for the Ducks.

Follow Zak Laster on Twitter: @zlast3445

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Zak Laster

Zak Laster

Zak Laster is a sports writer for the Daily Emerald. He covers volleyball, women's basketball, golf and baseball. He can be reached at [email protected]