After a 55 minute rain delay, the weather began to settle as the rain and thunder diminished from the sky.
Despite mother nature settling down, Oregon couldn’t, but Fresno State did.
“They looked like they played in these conditions a lot more than we have,” head coach George Horton said. “They did a much better job of playing on our own field.
Starting pitcher Tyler Frazier couldn't find the strike zone in the first inning, but he eventually settled down and came out rather unscathed, only giving up one run to end the first. Oregon (16-11) rallied to lead 2-1 entering the sixth inning, but a self-imploding performance in the seventh broke Oregon’s four game winning streak with a 14-2 loss to Fresno State (14-9).
“That was a negative perfect storm. ... It’s a shutdown inning basically,” Horton said.
Frazier opened the sixth by walking JT Arruda to quickly put a runner on first. McCarthy Tatum hit a routine pop-up off of to left field, but Taylor Adams was unable to back Fraizer as the ball popped out of his glove. Frazier, who went 5.1 innings giving up three runs on four hits, followed by popping-up the next batter to right field to advance the runners and Horton had seen enough.
Horton brought in Nico Tellache to try and prevent any further damage. Quite the opposite followed.
Tellache quickly found himself with a bases loaded situation after walking the second batter he faced. Tellache, much like Frazier, couldn't find his command. It showed as Tellache walked the the following batter to give Fresno State a 3-2 lead and the bases still loaded. Tellache, who went 0.1 innings, giving up three runs on one hit, was pulled after a single from Nate Thimjon brought in one more runner.
Horton tried to stop the bleeding by bringing in Keaton Chase. But, again, quite the opposite occurred. Chase, who faced four batters giving up three runs on one hit, couldn't stop the bleeding despite entering the game with two outs. Chase was quickly yanked after struggling to bring in Peyton Fuller. Fuller, who went 1.1 innings facing 10 batters and giving up three runs on five hits, eventually ended the bleeding for Oregon.
Fresno State, in the sixth inning, mustered eight runs on four hits, scoring all its runs with two outs. Oregon faced 14 batters, walking five of them and committed two crucial errors in the inning to give Fresno State a 9-2 lead.
“It was about a crummy inning, defensively, as you could have,” Horton said. “They out coached us, out pitched us, they out hit us and they out defended us.”
Fresno State tacked on five more runs ending its day with 14 runs on 16 hits. Tatum led the Bulldogs going 3-5 and driving two runs.
The Ducks as a whole, despite an offensive heavy weekend in Utah, mustered only two runs on three hits across nine innings.
“For whatever reason my team didn't show up,” Horton said.
The Ducks will send Robert Ahlstrom to the mound in an attempt to tie the series at one game a piece.
“The guys will bounce back. I don't know if we’ll play any harder, but we’ll play better,” he said.
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