Cougar Baseball Rallies Past Beavers

May 17, 2009

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CORVALLIS, Ore. - Redshirt-sophomore Jay Ponciano delivered a run-scoring single in the top of the ninth inning and Washington State overcame a four-run deficit to defeat No. 25 Oregon State 7-6 in Pacific-10 Conference baseball, Sunday.

With the victory, Washington State (28-22, 16-8 Pac-10) took two of three games from the host Beavers (31-16, 13-11 Pac-10).

'Our guys earned this victory and they deserved it,' WSU Head Coach Donnie Marbut said. 'This was as a good of win as I have been a part of in Pullman. Our guys refused to lose from 1-to-25 (on the active roster).'

Oregon State scored a run in the first, another in the second, and two in the third to take a 4-0 lead and chase Cougar redshirt-freshman starter David Stilley.

Beavers' starter Jorge Reyes retired the first nine men he faced, but ran into trouble in the fourth. Sophomore Garry Kuykendall singled and took third on a single by Ponciano. Freshman Derek Jones drove home WSU's first run with a sacrifice fly. Ponciano stole second and scored on a double by senior Greg Lagreid. Senior Jared Prince followed with a single to cut OSU's advantage to 4-3.

The Beavers tallied once in the bottom of the fourth to increase their lead to 5-3, but the Cougars responded with a three-run sixth inning.

Jones reached on an error to open the frame. Lagreid then blistered a ball through the right side to send Jones to third. Prince walked to load the bases and Josh Osich came out of the bullpen to replace Reyes for OSU. Junior Michael Weber grounded into a double play as Jones scored and Lagreid moved to third. Sophomore Shea Vucinich followed with his sixth home run of the season to give the Cougars their first lead of the day at 6-5.

After junior Connor Lambert retired all four men he faced and freshman Adam Conley pitched a perfect sixth, Marbut called on his redshirt-junior closer Jeremy Johnson (5-1). Ryan Ortiz greeted Johnson with a home run down the right field line to open the seventh that tied the game 6-6.

It was still tied in the ninth when redshirt-sophomore Cody Bartlett led off with an infield single and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Kuykendall. Ponciano then delivered a single to center for the game-winner.

Johnson proceeded to set down the Beavers in order in the ninth and finished the game retiring all nine men he faced after the Ortiz home run.

WSU travels to Gonzaga, Tuesday for a 6:30 p.m. nonconference game and will host Washington in a three-game Pacific-10 series beginning, Friday to wrap up the regular season.

Senior Jared Prince moved into seventh on the WSU career hits and RBI lists with 246 and 157, respectively...redshirt-junior Jeremy Johnson won his fifth game in relief, tied for fifth all-time on the Cougars' single-season list...WSU overcame a four-run deficit in a Pac-10 road game for the first time since April 13, 2003 (at Oregon State)...Cougars won a series on consecutive trips to the same Pac-10 opponent since 2002 (at Arizona)...WSU also won two of three games at Oregon State in 2007.

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