SEATTLE – Behind solid pitching from Jeff Brigham and a two-run double by catcher Austin Rei, seventh-ranked Washington shutout Washington State 2-0 in the second game of a double header at Husky Ballpark Sunday to sweep aside the visiting Cougars.
Washington (29-10-1, 16-5) scored only four runs combined in the two games, but it was enough as the Cougars (18-22, 8-10) only mustered one run all day. The two-game sweep ended a three-game losing skid and gave the Huskies wins in all seven Pac-12 series they have played this season.
After Oregon State swept Oregon this weekend to improve to 14-4 (.778) in Conference action, the Huskies (.762) are just .16 percentage points behind the Beavers for first place.
The Huskies staked Brigham to a 2-0 lead in the fourth inning after Rei came through with a two-out, two-run double. Trevor Mitsui and Brian Wolfe had back-to-back singles to put runners on the corners, and Rei scored both with a shot down the left-field line to up his season RBI total to 20.
That turned out to be enough for Brigham (5-2) and the Huskies’ bullpen. The junior right hander left the game in the top of the seventh after hitting the lead-off hitter with his first pitch. He allowed four hits, two walks and did not strike out a batter in earning his first win in over a month.
Brigham and the bullpen worked out of multiple jams, thanks largely to a defense behind them that turned four double plays – six total in the two games.
Will Ballowe, Brandon Choate and Troy Rallings gave up two hits, but combined for the final nine outs to preserve the win. Rallings pitched the ninth inning to get his second save of the day, his seventh of the year.
The win stopped a season-high three game losing skid and evened the series at 1-1.
Washington jumped on Cougars’ starter Tanner Chleborad (2-5) in the first inning to give Davis an advantage to work with that he would cling to all day. Ely snapped out of a 1-for-30 slump with a single to center and advanced on a Robert Pehl groundout. Wolfe, who entered the game second in the Pac-12 with a .398 average, delivered a clutch two-out double to center that scored Ely to give UW a 1-0 lead.
The Dawgs added an unearned run in the fifth after Ely slapped a single to left-center field to score Erik Forgione, who reached on a throwing error by third baseman Nick Tanielu. The hit was Ely’s third of the game.
Washington State got what would turn out to be their only run all day in the sixth on a Davis wild pitch. Trace Tam Ting doubled with one out and advanced to third on a bunt base hit by Collin Slaybaugh. Ting scored when Davis uncorked a pitch into the dirt that got behind the catcher Rei. After a walk, Davis induced No. 3 hitter Yale Rosen to bounce into a tailor-made 4-6-3 double play to end the threat.
Davis (9-1) left the game with a 2-1 lead after seven innings and in position to equal the Pac-12 lead with his ninth win. He gave up one run on five hits and struck out one batter and walked one too.
Trevor Dunlap and Rallings combined to close out the game. Rallings got the final four outs of the game to pick up his sixth save.
Ely ended up with five hits in the two games. He was 5-for-8 with a run and RBI.
Wolfe had four hits. He was 4-for-7 to raise his season average to .409.
The Huskies return to action Tuesday at 5:00 p.m. against Seattle U at Husky Ballpark. They then hit the road for a three-game series at Utah, Friday through Sunday.
Game 1: #7 Washington 2, Washington State 1
WSU 000 001 000 –- 1 6 3
WASH 100 010 00x –- 2 6 0
Tyler Davis, Trevor Dunlap (8), Troy Rallings (8) and Austin Rei. Tanner Chleborad, Matt Bower (8) and P.J. Jones. W – Davis (9-1). L – Chleborad (2-5). Sv – Rallings (6). HR – none. 3B – UW, Andrew Ely. 2B – WSU, Nick Tanielu, Trace Tam Sing; UW, Brian Wolfe. Time – 2:05. Attendance – 1,395.
Game 2: #7 Washington 2, Washington State 0
WSU 000 000 000 –- 0 6 1
WASH 000 200 00x –- 2 7 0
Jeff Brigham, Will Ballowe (7), Brandon Choate (7), Troy Rallings (9) and Austin Rei. Jason Monda, Kellen Camus (4), Ian Hamilton (8) and P.J. Jones. W – Brigham (5-2). L – Monda (1-5). Sv – Rallings (7). HR – none. 3B – none. 2B – Austin Rei. Time – 2:29. Attendance – 1,395.