KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. – Oregon Tech clinched a berth in the Cascade Conference Championships, using a 6-run sixth inning rally to defeat the University of British Columbia, 12-2, in Game 1 of today's doubleheader at Steen Sports Park.
UBC (27-17, 12-6 CCC) plated a pair of 2-out runs in the ninth to salvage a split, winning the nightcap, 10-8.
The victory for the Hustlin' Owls (28-16, 15-7) secured the club's second postseason appearance in three seasons – keeping their hopes of a league title alive.
Patrick Arman tossed six innings of 4-hit ball to earn his seventh win of the year – the 17th win of his OIT career, establishing a new school record.
The two teams traded runs early, as Tech took a second inning lead on an Ian Peters RBI double, but the T-Birds tied the score on a long third inning Aaron Marsh homer. The Owls took the lead for good in the fifth, as Matthew Ortiz scampered home from third on a 2-out dropped pop fly on the infield.
OIT broke the game open an inning later, as Bryce Petrilla launched a 2-run homer, Ortiz lined an RBI single and Ka'ala Tam doubled home a pair, as the hosts extended the margin to 8-1. An Ortiz 2-run double in the seventh pushed the lead to 10-1, while in the eighth, Adam Jacques ended the game due to the mercy rule with a walk-off RBI single.
Ortiz was 3-for-4 with three RBI in the win, with Jones and Tyler Horner each recording two hits. Marsh was 3-for-4 in the loss for the T-Birds.
UBC never trailed in Game 2 – but squandered 5-1 and 8-5 leads. The T-Birds scored four unearned runs in the fourth – with the big blow a 2-run homer from David Draayers – to grab a 4-run lead.
OIT scored three unearned runs of their own in the bottom of the fourth and Jones lined a solo homer in the fifth to pull Tech within 6-5. Trailing 8-5 in the eighth, Dane Bradshaw singled and scored after three wild pitches, with Jones tying the score with a 2-out, 2-run double.
The momentum was short-lived, as Noah Or blooped a 2-out single in the ninth, with pinch-runner Luciano Letteri scoring on Jonny McGill's fourth hit of the game, a long double off the right field wall.
Vic Domingo slammed the door for UBC, striking out the side in the ninth for the save.
Jones, Jacques and Alonzo Vergara each had two hits in the loss for Tech, with starter Lalo Barraza allowing just two earned runs in five-plus innings.
Tomorrow, the teams close out the series with an 11 a.m. doubleheader. OIT can clinch the CCC regular-season title with a sweep. It is also Senior Day, as the Owls will honor the five senior student-athletes on the squad.