Ducks’ Spencer pilots no-no to beat Portland

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KEIZER, Ore. – Volcanoes Stadium erupted on Wednesday night as Portland’s Jeff Melby lined out to Aaron Payne, securing freshman lefty Jordan Spencer’s no-hitter as the No. 8 Ducks defeated Portland 3-0.

The Beaverton, Ore., native faced just two batters over the minimum in his career high nine innings on the mound, plunking a batter in the fifth, and the second reaching on an error in the seventh. Spencer (2-1) struck out a career-best five, as the lefty tossed the first complete game shutout of his career.

Oregon (26-10) was led at the plate by Aaron Payne’s 3-for-4 performance, while Ryon Healy and Brett Thomas also recorded two hits apiece.

Oregon took the first lead of the game, 2-0, in the top of the third as Kevin Shepherd reached safely after being plunked. He moved all the way to third on errant pickoff attempt, before scoring Oregon’s first run of the game on a wild pitch.

Oregon’s lineup then produced three consecutive singles off starter Kody Watts as Healy drove in Connor Hofmann with a single to left as the Ducks led 2-0.

The Duck advantage increased to 3-0 in the top of the fifth when Payne led off the inning with a single to right, and moved all the way to third on Healy’s single up the middle. Payne then came home as Keeler Brynetson’s delivery was too wide of catcher Bo Cornish’s reach.

In the start, Watts (2-1) took the loss after allowing two runs on four hits, one walk and three hit batters in three and 2/3 innings.

Brynteson, Brandon Snyder, Chad Kjehmus and Owen Jones each appeared in relief for Portland (20-12).

The Ducks return to action in a three-game series that begins at 6 pm on Friday at PK Park hosting Washington State.