Healy homers, Ducks claim series from Arizona
EUGENE, Ore. - Ryon Healy hit a three-run home run and four Oregon pitchers combined to hold Arizona to just one run for the second straight day as the No. 13 Ducks won 5-1 at PK Park on Saturday.
Healy broke open a tight game with a three-run line drive home run over the left field wall in the eighth inning scoring Brett Thomas and Aaron Payne. Healy's homer, his fourth of the season, came off reliever Mathew Troupe with no outs. Thomas led off the inning with a single up the middle, moved to second on a wild pitch by starter James Farris (3-3), and advanced to third on an error on a sacrifice bunt by Payne.
Starter Tommy Thorpe (3-2) and three relievers limited the Wildcats (15-10, 0-5 Pac-12) to just one run on six hits. Thorpe gave up all six hits in 6.2 innings while allowing Arizona's only run.
Darrell Hunter came in to get the final out of the seventh inning after a two-out walk by Thorpe. Freshman Garrett Cleavinger struck out three of the four hitters he faced while pitching the eighth and All-American Jimmie Sherfy finished the game fanning two of the three hitters he faced in the ninth inning.
Tyler Baumgartner led the Ducks offense going 2-for-3. Thomas was 1-for-3 with two runs scored, while Payne and Scott Heineman each went 1-for-3 with Heineman scoring a run. Healy was 1-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored.
Shaun Chase gave the Ducks a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second on a squeeze bunt that scored Heineman, who started the rally with a one-out single and moved to third on a base hit by Baumgartner.
Arizona tied the game with a run in the top of the fourth with a pair of hits, including a RBI single by designated hitter Joseph Maggi, but Oregon took the lead back with a run in the fifth. Payne picked up the RBI with a two-out single scoring Thomas, who walked with two outs and stole second.
The Wildcats threatened to score in the sixth putting a runner on second with one out, but Thorpe got out of trouble with some defensive help. Thorpe struck out Trent Gilbert before giving up a single to right field that Arizona tried to score on. Heineman fielded the ball on one hop and threw Brandon Dixon out at the plate to end the inning.
Oregon (17-6, 4-1 Pac-12) clinched the three-game series with the three-run eighth. The Ducks will look for the series sweep Sunday at 12 p.m.