The Beavers struck late to come out on top against the Washington State Cougars 4-2 at Goss Stadium in Corvallis.
Early on the Beavers had a much different look than the previous 9 games in the win streak. Michael Miller the regular center fielder, Danny Hayes the regular first baseman, and Carter Bell the regular third baseman, were all out of the lineup. It was definitely a strange move. Brian Stamps, Garrett Nash and Luke Acosta were all inserted into the starting lineup.
In the bottom half of the first inning the Beavers caught a ton of breaks. Brian Stamps was way out in front on a breaking and lofted in down the left field line, thankfully for the Beavers the Cougars left fielder and shortstop completely misplayed it and the Beavers had a lead-off double. After Garrett Nash struck out and Ryan Barnes grounded out, Kavin Keyes hit a weak fly ball that the right fielder just flat out dropped and the Beavers took a 1-0 lead.
In the seconding inning, James Nygren, who got a surprising start, got himself into a good amount of trouble. With a runner on first and 1 out, Nygren hit James Monda and walked Tommy Richards to load the bases loaded. He looked like he may not get out of the inning. Jay Ponciano the next batter at the plate, smoked a ball to center field, but center field made a diving catch to rob him of a hit and Stamps threw out James Monda at second for a double play. It’s not something you see every day and Nygren could not have been more fortunate.
In the fourth the Cougars tied the game at 1, thanks to a mammoth home run by Derek Jones on a James Nygren BP fastball.
In the 6th inning James Nygren got himself into trouble again. He walked Brett Jacobs and Derek Jones to start the inning. He then got a big double play hit into by Taylor Ard to get two outs. He then got Matt Argyropoulos to fly out to Stamps to escape again.
The score remained tied at 1 until the bottom half of the 7th inning. Ryan Dunn led off with a single, then Luke Acosta doubled to left. Parker Berberet then got the big clutch hit. He had a two run double to give the Beavers a 3-1 lead. With two outs Brian Stamps hit an infield single where his speed allowed him to reach base on a weakly hit ball, on the play Berberet scored but had been favoring his hamstring.
James Nygren came out in the ninth looking for a complete game, but that didn’t last long. Nygren gave up a lead-off single and the next batter singled and came home to score, that being of the unearned fashion, thanks to an error in left field by Nash.
Tony Bryant came in to relieve Nygren and made quick work. He showed off his devastating changeup and had three quick outs to pick up his 6th save and give the Beavers their 10th straight win and give them a 9-1 conference record to go with a 28-7 record overall.
It was definitely a true team win. This club just finds ways to win. Really fun to watch.
James Nygren went 8+ innings and gave up two runs(1 earned) and pitched okay but was very fortunate with all the hard line drive hits off him. He will have to get the ball down if he wants similar success.