Ducks Close Regular Season at Cal
No. 11 Oregon wraps up the regular season when it heads out on the road to take on California in a four-game series Thursday through Saturday. Oregon will look to solidify its resume as a potential top-16 host for NCAA Regionals, which will be announced during Sunday's selection show. The Ducks head into the week in fifth place in the conference, but with a chance to finish as high as third in the league. Cal leads the all-time series, 79-56, but the Ducks have won 18 of the last 20 meetings since 2013.
|Date/Time||Opponent||Live Stats||Live Stream|
|Thursday, May 13 – 3 p.m.||at California||https://bit.ly/2RbvZlw
|Friday, May 14 – 12 p.m.||at California||https://bit.ly/3vZiDaN
|Friday, May 14 – 3 p.m.||at California||https://bit.ly/3w4WtnH
|Saturday, May 15 – 11 a.m.||at California||https://bit.ly/3bjTWOo
DID YOU KNOW?
Oregon leadoff hitter Haley Cruse currently ranks in the top 10 of the Pac-12 in six major offensive stat categories and owns a .500 OBP when leading off an inning.
CAN'T TOUCH THIS
Oregon pitching has racked up the strikeouts at a high rate this season. The Ducks are fourth in the nation with 394 strikeouts and are the only team in the country with three players in the top 40 in strikeouts per seven innings. Brooke Yanez, Makenna Kliethermes and Samaria Diaz are all averaging at least 8.8 strikeouts per seven innings and are in the top 40 in strikeout rate.
The Ducks have been tested against some of the best the Pac-12 - and the nation - has to offer all season long. Oregon has played 18 games against teams currently ranked in the top 15 while each of the last 24 games have been against teams in the RPI top 50. The Ducks have six wins over ranked opponents - including five against top-10 teams - while 12 of the 15 losses have come vs. ranked opponents.
FINDING WAYS TO WIN
Oregon has made a habit of winning close games this season. The Ducks are 18-7 this year in games decided by three runs or less, and are 7-1 in games decided by one run. Oregon has also won 10 times in games in which it has trailed, while winning nine games when either tied or trailing after four innings. The Ducks have outscored their opponents 84-52 from the fifth inning on this season. Additionally, seven of Oregon's last eight games have been decided by three runs or less.
MAKING A CASE
Oregon heads into the final weekend of the regular season at California at No. 11 in the RPI. The Ducks have 12 wins against RPI top-50 teams and a strength of schedule that ranks 15th in the country. Additionally, Oregon has six wins vs. RPI top 15 teams while all 15 of the team's losses on the year have come against teams with an RPI of 50 or better. The Ducks have played 27 games against teams in the RPI top 50 - tied for the most in the conference. Oregon has 18 games against teams currently ranked in the top 12 of the NFCA Poll, with 16 of those games coming in the last five weeks. The Ducks played No. 2 UCLA six times this season, going 2-4 against the Bruins and handing them two of their three losses on the year. Oregon is 6-12 this season against ranked opponents.
SENIOR WEEKEND SPLIT
Oregon took the first two in a four-game series against No. 7 Arizona this past weekend to wrap-up regular season play at Jane Sanders Stadium. The Ducks won a pair of one-run games against the Wildcats to begin the weekend and lock up the conference series win, before dropping the nonconference nightcap of the doubleheader Saturday, 4-3, and falling, 2-0 on Senior Day. Brooke Yanez led the charge in the circle, posting a 0.38 ERA and 24 strikeouts to just one walk over 18.2 innings against an Arizona team that came into the weekend leading the Pac-12 in hitting. Haley Cruse paced the Ducks at the plate, going 8-for-13 with four extra-base hits and three RBIs in her final career regular season weekend at home. Terra McGowan delivered the highlight of the weekend, blasting a two-run walk-off homer in the seventh inning of Friday's win.
Left-handed pitcher Brooke Yanez took home NFCA National Pitcher of the Week and Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week honors after a dominant weekend against Arizona. The Wildcats came into this past weekend leading the conference in hitting, but Yanez shut them down, posting a 0.38 ERA with 24 strikeouts and just one walk over 18.2 innings. She went the distance in her two starts in games one and two of the series, striking out eight in a complete game win on Friday before tossing a four-hit shutout with 12 strikeouts and no walks Saturday. Her shutout on Saturday was the first time since May 17, 2018 (Miranda Elish) that an Oregon pitcher recorded double-digit strikeouts with no walks in a shutout.
SWING & MISS STUFF
Oregon is currently the only team in the country to have three players rank in the top 40 nationally in strikeouts per seven innings. As a staff, the Ducks are second in the conference with 8.90 strikeouts per seven innings while Oregon is the only team with three players in the top 10 of the Pac-12 in strikeout rate. The Ducks are also fourth nationally in total strikeouts with 394 on the season while the strikeout total is good for the ninth most in a season in program history.
Oregon leadoff batter Haley Cruse has set the tone all season for the Ducks' offense. She has an on-base percentage of .500 when leading off an inning, while the Ducks are 23-5 on the season in games where she scores a run. Cruse has also had a hand in nearly a quarter of the team's runs this year, scoring or driving in 56 of the team's 238 on the year, or 23.5 percent. She currently leads the team in seven different offensive categories and ranks in the top 10 of the Pac-12 in six of the major offensive stat categories.
Oregon has hit a number of its home runs in key situations this season, with 21 of its 49 long balls either tying the game or giving the Ducks a lead. Alyssa Brito and Haley Cruse lead the way with five homers that have either scored the tying or go-ahead runs, followed by Allee Bunker and Rachel Cid each with three. Additionally, 11 other homers have come with Oregon ahead by less than four runs to give the Ducks some key insurance.