Bird’s first-period grand slam gave the Ducks (26-15, 5-12 Pac-12) a 6-2 lead. But Washington scored five runs in the second to take a 7-6 lead, with the Huskies scoring their seven runs on just two hits — both home runs.
Oregon tied it at fourth and Stevie Hansen closed out UW from the third to the seventh innings. But Washington scored twice in eighth and UO star Bunker driveway hit with loaded bases to end the game.
It was a disappointing moment for the UO bats, but ultimately some first free bases allowed were the biggest source of frustration.
“We scored seven points,” said UO coach Melyssa Lombardi mentioned. “That should be enough.”
How did it happen: A four-pitch walk followed by a one-out homer gave Washington a 2-0 lead. But a day after being ruled out, bats in Oregon quickly came to life.
A one-out double from Bunker put two runners in scoring position late in the first, and Ariel Carlson was hit by a pitch to load the bases. With two outputs, KK Humphreys walked to force in a run, and after a change of throw Hannah Galey was hit by a pitch to tie, 2-2.
That brought Bird to the plate with the bases still loaded, and she hastily unloaded them with her second home run of the season.
“I was waiting for my opportunity,” said Bird, who started two straight games with the regular third baseman Rachel Cid unavailable. “I knew it was going to be a great opportunity. I was just waiting for my pitch and I got it.”
The lead didn’t last long, as two walks and a slapped batter charged the bases for UW in the second. A wild pitch brought home a run, another walk — this one intentional — loaded the bases again and a two-out Grand Slam put the Huskies back in front.
Oregon tied it when paige sinicki started the fourth with a double and Bunker led it with a two-out single. But a two-out, two-run homer in the eighth put UW back in front, and the Ducks couldn’t get a spectacular finish after charging late in the innings on two walks and a field hit. .
Notable: Bird more than doubled his RBI total for the season with the Grand Slam, going from three to seven. … Bunker’s RBI in the fourth was his team-leading 36th of the season. … Terra McGowan had two hits, improving his season average to .407 – including .500 in the last eight games. … Hansen’s 6.2 run outing was his longest of the season. … Karissa Ornelas appeared to a pinched hitter in the seventh, his first appearance since March 3.
The head coach Melyssa Lombardi on Oregon’s resolve through a 2-10 streak in April
“This group is a tough, tough group. A tough group. We had some tough games that didn’t work out for us, and they keep fighting.”
Second year Tehya birdto work a one-out walk to keep hope alive in the eighth
“It’s my fourth at bat of the game, so in that moment I’m not putting any extra pressure on myself. I’m just going in there knowing I’m a good hitter and I can do it.”
Following: The Ducks and Huskies wrap up the series Sunday at 3 p.m. (Pac-12 Network).