Another Extra Innings Thriller
May 12, 2001
LOS ANGELES - For the second straight day, the Bruins pulled out a victory in extra innings, defeating Oregon State 7-6 in 11 innings at Jackie Robinson Stadium this afternoon. The Bruins tied the game three different times, and finally pulled out the victory in the bottom of the 11th when Randall Shelley hit a single to left field, scoring Matt Pearl for the winning run. With their third straight win, the Bruins keep their hopes of qualifying for the postseason alive by improving their record to 29-23, 8-12 in the Pac-10. Oregon State drops to 29-22, 9-11.
The Beavers loaded the bases with no outs in the first inning, but Josh Karp forced a fly ball to left field and a double play to get out of the inning without a run. The Bruins scored their first run in the second inning. Josh Arhart started the inning with a double. Arhart scored on a ground ball that Brandon Averill hit to Beaver second baseman Zack Gordon, but it went through Gordon's legs to allow Arhart to score.
Oregon State responded by scoring three runs in the top of the third, but the Bruins closed the gap in the fifth with a run. Ben Francisco led off the inning with a double and advanced to second on a Josh Canales single. Brian Baron drove home Francisco with an RBI single.
The score was 3-2 heading into the bottom of the seventh, but Pearl hit a solo home run to tie the game at 3-3. The game remained tied until the ninth, when the Beavers scored a run off of UCLA reliever Mike Kunes to take a 4-3 lead. Kunes took over for Karp in the sixth and allowed just one hit and one run in 4.0 innings, striking out one batter.
UCLA tied the game at 4-4 in the bottom of the ninth. With two outs, Canales singled and advanced to third on a Baron single. Pearl drove in another game tying run when he hit a ball up the middle that allowed Canales to score and force extra innings.
The Beavers added two runs in the top of the 10th to take a 6-4 lead, but the resiliant Bruins didn't give up. Shelley hit a solo home run to make the score 6-5, and Christian Lewis followed him with a long double over the head of Beaver centerfielder Eric Stark. With two outs and Lewis at second base, Francisco hit a chopper up the middle that allowed Lewis to score and tie the game again, 6-6.
Casey Janssen, who pinch hit in the ninth and stayed in at first base in the 10th inning, came in to pitch the final 1.2 innings of the game. In the 11th, he allowed a hit to open the inning, but forced a double play and a ground out to end the inning without a run.
Pearl started the 11th with a single to center field, and advanced to second on an Arhart sacrifice bunt. Averill was intentionally walked to set the stage for another big Shelley hit. With one out, Shelley hit a line drive to left field. Waiting to see if the left fielder would catch the ball, Pearl stayed close to second, and started running when he saw that the ball would not be caught. But left fielder Chris Biles booted the ball, allowing Pearl to score the game winning run.
Pearl finished the game 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBI, including two game tying RBI and a solo home run. Canales extends his hitting streak to 19 games with a 3-for-5 day. Francisco was 3-for-6 with a run and a big RBI. Shelley was 2-for-2 with a home run and the game winning hit.
Karp finished the day with three run and five strikeouts in 5.0 innings of work. Janssen picked up the win to improve to 1-1 on the season.
The Bruins will look to sweep the Beavers on Sunday at Jackie Robinson Stadium. It's the final home game of the season and UCLA will honor its seniors in a ceremony before the game.