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Big Fifth Inning Puts Oregon Over Utah in Opener

Mar 18, 2022

EUGENE, Ore. – Utah struck early but the Utes were unable to counter a five-run fifth inning as Oregon pulled away in an 11-4 result on Friday night in the series opener at PK Park.
TJ Clarkson (2-for-3) clubbed his team-leading fourth home run of the year, reaching base with the feat for the 15th consecutive game. Kai Roberts also reached safely for the 13th straight contest.

Matthew Sox (2-1) went 4.1 innings in his start on the mound, before Sox was relieved by Dane Baker for the final 3.2 innnings on the night.
Utah (11-5-1, 2-2 Pac-12) was first to the scoreboard with a three-run second inning, taking advantage of some early-count situations. Clarkson led off the inning by turning on the 1-0 offering, sending it over the right field wall toward the Oregon bullpen. Then, Davis Cop popped the first pitch he saw for a single to left field. Two batters later, Cop came all the way around from first when Matt Richardson doubled, and Richardson himself scored on Dakota Duffalo's base hit that followed to give the Utes a 3-0 lead.
But the Ducks narrowed the margin to 3-2 in their half of the second inning, and pulled in front by a 4-3 score with Brennan Milone's two-run homer in the third frame. Oregon swelled its lead to 5-3 with another run in the last of the fourth.
The Utes answered with a run of their own in the fifth, when Landon Frei singled to center field and Clarkson came in from second base, sliding head-first into home just ahead of the tag.
In the bottom half, however, the home club batted around en route to plating five runs on four hits. Oregon would add one more run in the sixth inning to close out the scoring for the night.
The Utes will rematch with Oregon in the middle game on Saturday, March 19 in a 4 p.m. MT first pitch. The game will air on Pac-12 Oregon.
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