Sunday, June 1, 2014 | 5:42 p.m.
One of the Rebels’ biggest concerns heading into their NCAA regional was the recent lack of offense. That proved costly in all three games, and after a 6-1 loss to top-seeded Oregon State today in Corvallis, Ore., UNLV baseball’s season is done.
Through five innings, the Rebels were hanging with the Beavers every step of the way. Oregon State had never lost a home regional game until Saturday night against UC Irvine, yet it looked like it could be in danger again because Rebels starter Kenny Oakley was stellar.
The problem was that Oregon State starter Ben Wetzler was even better. Wetzler ended up throwing a complete game, allowing only four hits and one earned run with 10 strikeouts to three walks.
Oregon State’s offense finally broke through in the sixth inning with five runs, none of them earned. A throwing error opened things up for the Beavers, and then the floodgates opened as Oakley started to get fatigued.
In three games at the regional, UNLV only managed to score six runs. For a comparison, 14 other teams in the tournament scored at least that many runs in their first game alone.
The Rebels finished the season at 36-25. Injuries limited their likelihood of success in this regional — their first since 2005 — but the overall year brought a lot of optimism about the future.
Now UNLV must see how many players it loses to this week’s MLB Draft and then figure out the veterans it can pair with an incoming recruiting class that has manager Tim Chambers looking forward to 2015.