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Jacob Melton, Garret Forrester homer as Oregon State baseball beats UCLA to avoid sweep

OregonLive.com logo OregonLive.com 5/22/2022 Joel Odom, oregonlive.com
Oregon State’s Garret Forrester (44) follows through on a swing during a college baseball game between the Oregon Ducks and Oregon State Beavers on Tuesday, April 26, 2022, at PK Park in Eugene. Oregon State won 4-2. Photo by Leon Neuschwander for The Oregonian/OregonLive © Leon Neuschwander for/oregonlive.com/TNS Oregon State’s Garret Forrester (44) follows through on a swing during a college baseball game between the Oregon Ducks and Oregon State Beavers on Tuesday, April 26, 2022, at PK Park in Eugene. Oregon State won 4-2. Photo by Leon Neuschwander for The Oregonian/OregonLive

The losing streak is history, but so are the Oregon State Beavers’ hopes of sharing the Pac-12 baseball regular-season title.

Still, it’s now on to the postseason for the No. 2 Beavers, who built a little momentum Saturday by beating No. 23 UCLA 9-3 in their series finale and regular-season finale in front of a packed Goss Stadium in Corvallis.

Jacob Melton and Garret Forrester bashed home runs and the Beavers rolled past the Bruins as a record crowd of 4,275 fans watched at Goss. It was the second day in a row that Oregon State set a new home attendance record.

The Beavers (41-13, 20-10 Pac-12) snapped a four-game losing streak, avoided a series sweep by the Bruins (35-20, 19-11) and earned the No. 2 seed for next week’s Pac-12 baseball tournament.

No. 4 Stanford (37-14, 21-9), which beat USC 12-5 on Saturday, already had sewn up the top seed for the Pac-12 tournament, which runs Wednesday to Sunday in Scottsdale, Arizona. UCLA will enter the tournament as the No. 3 seed.

The Beavers will open the double-elimination tournament against No. 7 seed Washington at 4:45 p.m. Wednesday.

Oregon State entered Saturday’s game having scored 12 total runs in their previous four games. But in the finale against UCLA, the Beavers produced more like they had for most of the season.

Melton hit a two-run homer in the third inning that gave Oregon State a 4-1 lead, and then Forrester’s three-run shot finished off a five-run sixth inning for OSU that put the Beavers up 9-1.

UCLA answered with two runs on two RBI singles in the seventh, but that was all the Bruins could muster.

Beavers starter Jake Pfennigs (3-0) was charged with all three of UCLA’s runs but was solid in picking up the victory. The right-hander allowed five hits and struck out five while walking three across 6 1/3 innings.

After walking consecutive batters with one out in the seventh, Pfennigs yielded to right-hander Braden Boisvert, who ran into trouble of his own. Boisvert walked Kenny Oyama on four pitches to load the bases, then gave up a run-scoring single to Carson Yates.

Then the Beavers turned to right-hander Ben Ferrer, who sandwiched strikeouts around Jake Palmer’s RBI single to get out of the jam.

Ferrer went the rest of the way, striking out six of the nine UCLA batters he faced as 25 of his 38 pitches went for strikes.

— Joel Odom; jodom@oregonian.com

©2022 Advance Local Media LLC. Visit oregonlive.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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