The Ducks opened the series with a run rule, five inning, 8-0 shellacking of the Beavs, The wreckage began with a four run fourth featuring Gwen Svekis’ bomb to center and ended it with Mia Camuso’s walk-off grand slam in the fifth.
Megan Kleist picked up the win, improving her season mark to 15-3. In five innings of work the sophomore allowed three hits, no runs, walked none and struck out five.
Maggie Balint got the nod in the circle for Saturday’s game two and her teammates banged home a pair of runs in both the second and third frames to pave the way to a 7-2 victory. The freshman right-hander issued six walks but allowed only two hits and the two runs to lift her record to 17-3. Miranda Elish whiffed six in 2.2 innings of relief to pick up the save.
Kleist reprised her Friday outing with a one-hit shut-out in the finale, fanning six Beavers in the complete game effort.
Oregon opened the game with a three spot in their half of the first thanks to Shannon Rhodes’ 3-run blast. Rhodes also drove in a pair of runs in the fifth with a single to center, giving her 5 RBI to show for her day at the plate. The Ducks took advantage of a pair of field miscues to keep the game out of the Beaver’s reach with an unearned run in the third and another in the sixth.
The sweep extended the Ducks’ winning streak over their rivals from up the road to 15 games.
With their season mark now at 41-6 and heading into a non-conference series with the second ranked Florida State Seminoles, the Ducks are sitting at third place in the Pac-12 standings with a mark of 14-6, 2.5 games behind Arizona and a game behind second place Utah.
Scheduled as part of a home and home series that has the Ducks in Tallahassee early next season for a tournament, the Seminoles will close out the home portion of the 2017 regular season with a top-5 match-up carrying plenty of post season implications. First pitch for Saturday’s double-header is scheduled for 4:30 with Sunday’s finale set for 5:00. All three games will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks.
Oregon wraps up conference play next weekend at Stanford. While a fifth straight Pac-12 championship is in the hands of others, if the Ducks can put together two more weekends of solid play, they will be in good position to host the opening two rounds of the NCAA championships.
~ Rick Morgan