OMAHA, Neb. – It has been decades since an offense at the College World Series has been as prolific as Oregon State's.
The good times — and the runs — kept rolling for the Beavers in a 12-2 win over Mississippi State on Friday. Oregon State used a five-run second inning to build a big lead, batted around twice and never were threatened thanks to Brandon Eisert's season-long 5-plus innings of one-hit shutout relief.
Oregon State joined 1995 Cal State Fullerton as the only teams in CWS history to score 11 or more runs in three consecutive games. The Beavers' 43 runs are the most by a team through four games since 2001.
"When you're swinging the bat well, you have a lot of confidence going up and down the lineup," coach Pat Casey said. "We've got a team approach to swinging. I think they have a lot of trust in one another. I've been through spells during the year when we haven't swung the bat well. They're swinging it well at the right time. Certainly it's something I'm excited about."
The Beavers (51-11-1) have staved off elimination three times since losing their CWS opener to North Carolina last Saturday. They beat Washington, North Carolina and now Mississippi State. Another win over the Bulldogs (39-18) on Saturday would send Oregon State to the best-of-three CWS finals for the first time since 2007.
The Bulldogs, trying to return to the CWS finals for the first time since 2013, are not in unfamiliar territory. They were down to their last strike in regionals before beating Florida State in a win-or-go-home game, and this will be the sixth time in 11 games they'll be playing to fight off elimination.
"We've come back many, many times, this group has," MSU interim coach Gary Henderson said. "We'll respond well."
Oregon State won the first of two straight national titles in 2006 after losing its first game in Omaha. The only other team since then to make it to the finals after a loss in its opener was the 2010 South Carolina championship team.
The Beavers' offensive tear continued against a Mississippi State that came into the game having allowed just two runs in 18 innings.