The Ducks clinched their first series win against a ranked opponent Saturday as Oregon defeated Stanford 6-4. Ryon Healy hit two home runs and drove in four runs as the Ducks held off a late push from the visitors. Cole Irvin got his 8th win of the season and Jimmie Sherfy came on for the two innings save, it being the 14th of the year. "At no point did I feel comfortable in this game, even with Jimmie in there and a two run lead." Coach Horton said, giving credit to Stanford's bats.
The bats were hot for both teams early on as both Oregon and Stanford were able to score in the first few innings. Brett Thomas led off the inning with a single and Ryon Healy took Dean McArdle deep to right with a home run which left no doubt. The home run early though, would not shock the Cardinal as they would respond in the second. With a runner on, Alex Blandino found the outfield grass and Brett Thomas was unable to get his glove down allowing the ball to squirt by and Danny Diekgroeger to score from first. In the bottom half of the frame, Oregon would work around a pair of strike outs and score Shaun Chase with a single from Brett Thomas, his second hit in as many innings.
Healy would strike again in the fourth, taking a 1-2 pitch again to right field and out of the park plating another two as the Ducks threatened to really blow the game open early chasing Dean McArdle from the game. "We had a good approach going into it against him. We took his fastball away and he had trouble throwing his off speed for strikes," said Altobelli on their batting approach against McArdle. With 4 in the books, the Ducks lead 6-1 and were in control of the game. Stanford, though would not go quietly as they would plate two in the fifth, after Wayne Taylor and Drew Jackson singled and doubled respectively to lead off the inning. In the 7th, Irvin would walk Austin Slater and he would come around to score after a bobble by Mitchell Tolman and then an outright error by second baseman Aaron Payne.
After walking the lead off batter in the 8th, Cole Irvin turned the game over to Jimmie Sherfy who came into a bit of drama. With two down and the go ahead run at the plate, Sherfy fanned Brant Whiting to escape with the two run lead intact. Oregon was unable to add any insurance in the bottom of the 8th, putting the game squarely into Sherfy's hands. Up against the top of the order, Sherfy would walk the first man he faced in the 9th before retiring the next three batters he faced to record the save and clinch the series win for Oregon.
"Certainly when you are sitting 2-0, that is when the greed starts to set in and you would like to get all three. It's a milestone for this club. I'm proud of them." The Ducks seek a new milestone, with the series in hand. Oregon will look to get the sweep against the Cardinal tomorrow at 12:30.