Beavers Fall In Baseball Opener

Feb. 7, 2003

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - Oregon State squandered a 5-0 lead and wound up dropping a 9-6 season-opening baseball decision to the California-Riverside Highlanders on an unusually cold evening at the Riverside Sports Complex before 213 fans. OSU's Aaron Mathews did extend his hitting streak to 14 games over two seasons with a fourth-inning single.

Oregon State and UCR (5-0 overall) continue their series Saturday at 1 p.m., with righthander Ben Rowe scheduled to get the pitching start for the Beavers.

On Friday, the Beavers had total control of the game through three innings, leading 2-0 behind the strong pitching of starter Jake Postlewait. The Corvallis lefthander was making his first start for OSU and allowed only one hit in the first three innings.

The Beavers erupted for three runs in the top of the fourth to pad their lead to 5-0 and the way Postlewait was throwing it might be enough.

However, Postlewait walked the leadoff hitter in the bottom of the fourth, opening the floodgates. The second hitter, Jeff Crinklaw, singled then Randy Blood followed with a booming double off the rightfield wall to drive home two runs.

At that point, OSU head coach Pat Casey made a pitching change, bringing in sophomore Mike Ekstrom from the bullpen. However, Ekstrom was tagged for four hits and four more runs to put the Highlanders (5-0 overall) up 6-5, a lead they never relenquished.

The game's outcome boiled down down to the fourth inning. Although the Beavers scored three runs in the fourth, a missed sign and poor baserunning cost OSU a big inning and a chance to put the game away.

Chris Biles opened the inning with a walk and stole second. After Andy Jarvis struck out, Aaron Mathews singled to center to score Biles. Jacoby Ellsbury walked and Tony Calderon was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Catcher Paul Richie's grounder was booted for another run.With shortstop Rob Recuenco at bat and the bases loaded, a sing was missed and Ellsbury was out at the plate when Recuenco missed on a squeeze bunt attempt. Recuenco then hit away and his ground ball was booted, allowing Calderon to score. Recuenco was then picked off to end the inning.

'I thought we played a very solid club,' Casey said. 'They are 5-0 right now and have beaten some good teams. For us, coming out for our first game and having some concerns about a lot of new guys, I thought overall we did a pretty good job.

'We let one inning get away from us. We put three on the board in the fourth and you must come out and get the first guy out in the bottom of the inning, and we didn't do that. We had a chance to get out of the inning with a double-play ball and didn't execute it. Overall, I hope our guys recognize that we played a very good club and that we have a chance to be a good team. We must do the things when the heat is on and tonight we made some mistakes in crucial situations.'

Ekstrom took the loss for OSU in the opener and was not sharp in his 2 1/3 innings. Sophomore righthander John Koller pitched the final 2 2/3 innings for the Beavers and threw very well, appearing to be a strong addition to the pitching staff.

The Beavers produced seven hits in the opener by seven different players. Jarvis, Calderon and Recuenco all had doubles for the only extra-base hits.

Three different Highlander pitchers combined to strike out 10 OSU hitters.

UCR's 5-0 start is the best in school history. The Highlanders have beaten San Francisco three times and UCLA once.

CALIFORNIA-RIVERSIDE 9, OREGON STATE 6

Oregon State		101 300 100 - 6  7 1California-Riverside	000 603 00x - 9 10 3

Postlewait, Ekstrom (4), Koller (6) and Richie, McMullen (7). Hoff, Martinez (4), Winter (7) and Emmons. W-Martinez (1-0). L-Ekstrom (0-1). SV-Winter (2). 2B-Jarvis (OSU), Calderon (OSU), Recuenco (OSU), Harvey (UCR), Blood (UCR).

HITS: Oregon State 7 (Kunda 1x4, Biles 1x3, Jarvis 1x4, Mathews 1x4, Ellsbury 1x3, Calderon 1x3, Recuenco 1x3), California-Riverside 10 (Wahlbrink 1x4, Harvey 1x5, Crinklaw 3x5, Blood 2x3, Collette 1x3, Cunningham 1x4, Steinmeyer 1x3). RUNS BATTED IN: Oregon State 5 (Pietsch 1, Kunda 1, Jarvis 1, Mathews 1, Richie 1), California-Riverside 9 (Wahlbrink 1, Harvey 2, Crinklaw 2, Blood 2, Cunningham 1, Emmons 1).

Oregon State 6 (0-1)                          California-Riverside 9 (5-0)Player                      AB  R  H BI       Player                      AB  R  H BI---------------------------------------       ---------------------------------------Seth Pietsch lf............  4  0  0  1       Brian Wahlbrink cf.........  4  2  1  1Chris Kunda 2b.............  4  0  1  1       Ryan Harvey rf.............  5  1  1  2 Jake Quiring ph...........  1  0  0  0       Tony Festa 3b..............  3  1  0  0Chris Biles rf.............  3  2  1  0       Jeff Crinklaw dh...........  5  1  3  2Andy Jarvis 1b.............  4  0  1  1       Randy Blood 2b.............  3  1  2  2Aaron Mathews cf...........  4  1  1  1       Jason Collette 1b..........  3  0  1  0Jacoby Ellsbury dh.........  3  0  1  0       Matt Cunningham lf.........  4  1  1  1Tony Calderon 3b...........  3  2  1  0       Brian Emmons c.............  3  0  0  1Paul Richie c..............  2  0  0  1       Brian Steinmeyer ss........  3  2  1  0 Levi Webber ph............  1  0  0  0       Brian Hoff p...............  0  0  0  0 Ian McMullen c............  0  0  0  0        John Martinez p...........  0  0  0  0 Kerisi Reynolds ph........  0  0  0  0        Haley Winter p............  0  0  0  0Rob Recuenco ss............  3  1  1  0Jake Postlewait p..........  0  0  0  0 Mike Ekstrom p............  0  0  0  0 Jon Koller p..............  0  0  0  0Totals..................... 32  6  7  5       Totals..................... 33  9 10  9

Score by Innings R H E-------------------------------------------Oregon State........ 101 300 100 - 6 7 1California-Riverside 000 603 00X - 9 10 3-------------------------------------------

E - Recuenco; Festa 2; Steinmeyer. DP - UC-Riverside 1. LOB - Oregon St. 5;UC-Riverside 7. 2B - Jarvis; Calderon; Recuenco; Harvey; Blood. HBP - Calderon;Steinmeyer. SH - Collette. SF - Emmons. SB - Biles. CS - Jarvis; Ellsbury.

Oregon State IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF---------------------------------------------------------------------Jake Postlewait ........... 3.0 3 3 3 2 3 0 0 0 0 11 14Mike Ekstrom L,0-1........ 2.1 4 5 3 2 1 0 0 1 0 10 14Jon Koller ................ 2.2 3 1 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 12 12

California-Riverside IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF---------------------------------------------------------------------Brian Hoff ................ 3.1 6 5 4 2 3 0 1 1 0 13 16John Martinez W,1-0....... 3.1 1 1 1 1 4 0 0 0 0 12 13Haley Winter S,2.......... 2.1 0 0 0 2 3 0 0 0 0 7 9

HB - Ekstrom; Hoff. BK - Hoff.

Strikeouts - Pietsch 2; Kunda 2; Quiring; Biles; Jarvis 2; Mathews; Richie; Harvey;Emmons 3; Steinmeyer 2. Walks - Pietsch; Biles; Ellsbury; Reynolds; Recuenco;Wahlbrink; Festa 2; Blood.

Umpires - HP: Bart Whaley 1B: Scott Daniels 3B: Rorke KominekStart: 3:00 pm Time: 3:20 Attendance: 213

Postlewait faced 3 batters in the 4th.

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