Oregon State took an early lead following the second pitch of the game when Beau Philip's hit a solo home run to left field. The Beavers never gave up their lead following the home run.
Oregon (24-23, 8-14 Pac-12) dropped the opening game of the Civil War series to No. 12 Oregon State (32-14-1, 18-4 Pac-12) in Eugene, Oregon, on Friday night, 4-1.
Oregon State dominated the first inning. After the Philip's home run, Preston Jones and Kyler McMahan both hit doubles in the second inning. Andy Armstrong added an RBI in the second as well, giving the Beavers a 3-0 lead. Oregon State continued its offensive assault in the third inning adding another run for a score of 4-0.
Robert Ahlstrom, the Ducks starting pitcher, kept the Beavers' bats at bay following the third inning.
“I just settled down and caught my breath,” Ahlstrom said.
The Ducks were led in all facets of the game by third baseman Spencer Steer. Steer earned three hits in four at bats, along with the lone RBI of the game for the Ducks.
“I thought I played well and I thought the team played well too,” Steer said.
Steer has been on a tear lately. He earned Pac-12 honors this season for his performance in a prior series against Oregon State and Washington State. He's also been recognized by national outlets for his efforts, including a spot on Collegiate Baseball’s players of the week.
“We need more Spencer Steer, he is a special player,” head coach George Horton said.
Steer’s play has been enhanced by his move to the third base position. The late season adjustment has paid defensive dividends for the Ducks. Horton was asked about how he felt switching Steer to third base.
“Usually baseball finds the airhead, this time it found the All-American,” Horton said.
The Ducks had a chance at a comeback in the bottom of the ninth as both Evan Williams and Jakob Goldfarb both singled with one out in the inning. However, the Ducks could not break through. After the last out, cheering erupted from the visiting Beaver fans.
Goldfarb also had a solid game with two hits in three at bats. Sam Novitske contributed a hit and a run for the Ducks. In total, the Ducks out hit the Beavers 8-7.
It was a packed crowd at PK Park. Many Beaver fans made the journey to Eugene and the stands were a mix of both green and orange. Supporters of both teams cheered loudly and at times the atmosphere felt like a Beavers home game.
The Ducks currently sit at ninth place out of 11 teams in the Pac-12. The Beavers also snapped a four game losing streak while the Ducks were not able to build on their win against the University of Portland on Tuesday.
The Ducks will look to even the series tomorrow at 2 p.m.