EUGENE – Madison Boer had another solid outing on the mound, and Oregon capitalized on a costly error in the eighth as the Ducks defeated BYU 4-2 on Friday night at PK Park.
Oregon (7-7) gets back to .500 on the season with the win, and clinches its second series victory of 2011. The Ducks will look for the series sweep over the Cougars (8-6) on Saturday with first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m. from PK Park.
Boer produced his fourth straight quality start, allowing just one run in seven and 2/3 innings on the mound while fanning six. The Eden Prairie, Minn., native allowed five hits and issued five walks, but was denied the win after leaving the game with score even at 1-1 in the top of the eighth.
In four starts, Boer is 2-0 with a 0.58 ERA and has allowed just two runs in 31 innings on the mound while striking out 23 and holding opposing batters to a .140 clip.
Oregon used a little luck in the bottom of the eighth as Aaron Jones plated the game-winning runs, driving a two-run single into right with the bases loaded and one out on the scoreboard to put UO ahead 4-1.
Earlier in the inning, Aaron Payne’s fly ball was dropped by BYU left fielder Ryan Bernal leading to a three-base error as the speedy freshman dove into third, and then scored unearned on a wild pitch to give UO a 2-1 lead. Payne was making his first start at second in an Oregon uniform.
BYU starter Taylor Cole (2-1) then beaned KC Serna, who was sacrificed to second by Piazzisi, before his night was ended in favor of Kolton Mahoney. The right-hander struck Jack Marder and walked Tyler Kuresa to load the bases with one out. Mahoney was then lifted for right-hander Chunner Nyberg, who surrendered the two-run single to Jones.
Cole took the loss for BYU despite a solid outing, tossing 7 and 1/3 innings, and allowing three runs, two earned, on four hits and one walk while striking out two.
Sophomore Joey Housey (1-0) took over for Boer on the mound in the eighth and issued a walk to Austin Hall to load the bases, but struck out Dillon Robinson to end the top of the eighth keeping things tied up at 1-1.
Housey was credit with the win despite finding his way into trouble in the top of the ninth. The Hollywood, Fla., native gave up back-to-back, two-out hits before Dave Nielsen scored on a wild pitch as the Cougars closed 4-2. Housey tossed one inning of reliefand allowed one run on two hits and two walks while striking out two.
The Ducks brought left-hander Porter Clayton out to the mound to secure the final out as Wolfe grounded out to Kuresa at first with runners lurking on the corners.
Oregon took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth after Marder came around to score from first on J.J. Altobelli’s two-out double into deep left center. Marder’s bunt single down the third base line put a runner on to lead off the inning for UO, but Cole retired Kuresa and Jones before Altobelli came to the plate.
BYU tied the game in the top of the eighth as Nielsen scored from second on Wolfe’s two-out single down the left field line.
Boer worked himself out of a jam in the seventh after issuing a leadoff walk to Bernal and allowing Hall to reach first on a bunt down the first baseline that just stayed fair. With runners on first and second and no outs, Boer recorded a strikeout and then coaxed to fly outs from Kelton Caldwell and Wes Guenther to preserve UO’s then 1-0 lead.
Marder led the Ducks with a 2-for-3 evening, scoring two runs, while BYU stranded 10 runners on the bases.
The series finale is set for a 1 p.m. first pitch from PK Park on Saturday. It will be Greek Day at the field, and the house with the most attendance will win the chance to play a game at PK Park.
Notes: The Ducks have won their second series of the season…freshman Aaron Payne made his first start of the season at second base…freshman Porter Clayton earned his first save of the season…Aaron Jones has five RBIs in this weekend’s series, and leads the Ducks with 11 on the season.