CORVALLIS — Junior left fielder Michael Conforto homered twice and broke the school career RBI record on Sunday as No. 2-ranked Oregon State routed UCLA 11-2 at Goss Stadium to complete a weekend sweep of UCLA, the defending NCAA champion.
Conforto shattered the old mark on a three-run homer in the seventh inning that easily cleared the right-field bleachers. He added a two-run shot over the right-field fence in the eighth inning to finish the day with five RBIs. He now has 177 career RBIs; Andy Jarvis (2000-03) held the old record of 173.
Conforto's first homer capped a six-run outburst that snapped a 2-2 standoff. Moments before, the Beavers had taken a 3-2 lead on a safety squeeze bunt single by second baseman Andy Peterson; Conforto followed with a three-run bomb and Logan Ice and Trever Morrison added RBIs before the side was finally retired.
In the eighth, Dylan Davis punctuated Conforto's home run with one of his own over the left-field fence. They were OSU's first consecutive homers since Conforto and Davis went back-to-back against Kansas State on June 9, 2013, at Goss Stadium in Game 2 of the NCAA Super Regional.
It was the 11th consecutive win overall and the 11th straight Pac-12 Conference victory for the Beavers (38-8, 20-4), who extended their lead over idle second-place Washington (19-5 Pac-12) to one game in their bid to repeat as Pac-12 champions. They are 13-1 in their last 14 and 18-2 in their last 20.
Junior left-hander Jace Fry gave up two runs in the first inning and then shut down the Bruins (23-25-1, 10-14) on two hits over the next seven innings for his 10th win in 11 decisions. Fry struck out seven, walked two and improved his home record to 5-1 this season and 9-3 lifetime.
OSU's Jeff Hendrix hit a two-run homer in the third. He was 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBIs. He hit .444 (8-for-18) in four games during the week, with a homer, two doubles, six runs, five RBIs, two stolen bases and the game-winning RBI in a 4-3, 12-inning nonconference victory at Oregon on Tuesday.
Ice added four singles and an RBI; Peterson singled, doubled and scored twice and first baseman Gabe Clark doubled, singled and scored as the Beavers battered starter Cody Poteet and three relievers for 15 hits.
ARIZONA STATE 8, OREGON 6 — At Tempe, Ariz., Oregon rallied for four runs in the ninth inning but left the tying run at second base as in the Pac-12 game.
UO (36-16, 14-10 Pac-12) trailed 8-2 heading into the final inning but mounted a comeback thanks to some shaky relief by Sun Devils' closer Ryan Burr.
Pinch hitters Josh Graham and Steven Packard started the rally by reaching base with one out. Graham walked and moved to second on a single by Packard. Aaron Payne, who hit a solo homer in the seventh, walked to load the bases.
Tyler Baumgartner singled to score Graham to cut the lead to 8-3, before Shaun Chase drew a bases loaded walk to score Packard and bring the tying run to the plate. Mitchell Tolman singled to left field scoring Payne to get Oregon within three.
Kyle Garlick picked up a RBI with a ground out to first that scored Baumgartner and moved pinch runner Desmond Santos the third and Tolman to second with two outs. Arizona State's Eder Evis then got A.J. Balta to pop out to shortstop Drew Stankiewicz to end the game.
Arizona State (26-21, 14-10) scored five runs in the first before adding another run in the second.
Brando Tessar (4-1) took the loss for Oregon, allowing seven runs, four earned, on 10 hits in 32/3 innings while fanning two.
Track and Field
KEYS WINS DECATHLON — At Pullman, Wash., Oregon's Dakotah Keys won his third-straight Pac-12 decathlon championship, leading a group of four Ducks at the multi-event championships, each of whom brought home valuable team points.
The win for Keys continues the Ducks' dominance in the event at the conference level, as he and Ashton Eaton have combined to win it six of the past seven years.
Keys scored 7,801 points, while Oregon's Mitch Modin (7,310) was third and Alec Fellows (7,081) fourth.
Oregon's Daphne Chambers finished sixth in the women's heptathlon with 5,135 points.