EUGENE, Ore. – Kyle Garlick’s 18th two-out RBI of the season scored what proved to be the game-winning run in Oregon’s 2-1 come-from-behind victory over Portland at PK Park on Wednesday night.
The fifth-ranked the Ducks (42-14) will bring a nine-game winning streak to Goss Stadium on Friday night as Oregon closes the regular season in a three-game conference series at No. 23 Oregon State. The first-place Ducks currently hold a one-game lead in the Pac-12 standings over second-place Arizona.
The Ducks trailed the Pilots (25-24), 1-0, entering the bottom of the sixth, but used some two-out resilience to rally. Oregon doubled its hit total scoring two runs on three hits as Ryon Healy drove a two-out double into left center to tie the game when Aaron Payne came around from first to score. Healy was able to advance to third on the throw home, setting up Garlick’s pinch-hit RBI single into center that plated the go-ahead run.
Oregon has totaled 96 two-out RBIs in the 2012 season, led by Garlick’s 18.
Following the sixth, the trio of Joey Housey, Tommy Thorpe and Jimmie Sherfy held the Pilots without a base runner for the final three innings. Sherfy closed the game recording his 17th save of the season and striking out the side in the ninth.
In the win, Oregon left-hander Jordan Spencer (4-2) allowed just one run on three hits and three walks while striking out two. In two starts against the Pilots, Spencer is 2-0, allowing just one run in 15 innings pitched.
Dating back to his no-hitter against Portland on April 18, Spencer had pitched 14 and 2/3 shutout innings against the Pilots. But he ran into trouble in the top of the sixth as Portland took a 1-0 lead after Beau Fraser’s two-out RBI double scored Turner Gill. Gill was hit by a pitch earlier in the frame.
Portland starter Kyle Krause (6-6) was the tough-luck loser pitching an eight-inning complete game, and holding Oregon to two runs on eight hits while striking out four.
Payne and Healy led Oregon with two hits apiece, while Same Westendorf recorded two of Portland’s three hits.