Saturday marks the most important day of the 2017 College World Series to date with two elimination games that will determine which teams will play in the best-of-three championship series.
Oregon State, LSU, Florida and TCU entered the NCAA tournament as four of the top six seeds in the nation. Oregon State suffered its first loss since April 29, a span of 24 games, when LSU earned a 3-1 win Friday to force a decisive third game.
TCU entered the semifinals needing to beat Florida twice in two days after the Gators handed the Horned Frogs their first loss of the tournament in the first round of the College World Series. They took care of business in dominant fashion with a 9-2 win Friday, setting up one more game between the teams.
2017 College World Series Results
Game 13: LSU def. Oregon State, 6-1
Game 14: Florida def. TCU, 3-0
2017 CWS Championship Series (LSU vs. TBD)
Game 1: Monday, June 26 (7 p.m. ET, ESPN)
Game 2: Tuesday, June 27 (8 p.m. ET, ESPN)
Game 3 (If Necessary): Wednesday, June 28 (8 p.m. ET, ESPN)
LSU 6, Oregon State 1
LSU has sent top-seeded Oregon State home after an impressive 6-1 victory in the second game between these teams in 24 hours.
LSU Baseball @LSUbaseball
Hey Baton Rouge, you've got 49 hours to get to OMAHA!!! Find a way. https://t.co/5AjaF6uDyT2017-6-24 21:57:36
The Beavers looked like an unstoppable machine in the NCAA tournament. Their first seven games, including a June 19 victory over LSU, featured just one that was decided by fewer than four runs.
Coming off Friday's win, LSU wasted little time in getting to Oregon State. The Tigers scored three runs off Beavers freshman Bryce Fehmel in the second inning on Michael Papierski's home run to right field, his first of two homers on the day.
NCAA Baseball @NCAACWS
BACK... BACK... BACK... IT. IS. GONE!!!!!! Michael Papierski gets the scoring started with a 3-run BOMB!! 3-0 LSU in the 2nd. #CWS https://t.co/JHLV8oIXQY2017-6-24 19:41:12
Fehmel, who gave up four runs in 2.1 innings, was a surprise starter, since Danny Moran of The Oregonian noted Oregon State coach Pat Casey indicated the previous two days that Drew Rasmussen would pitch.
Fehmel held LSU in check with one run allowed over eight innings in Oregon State's 13-1 win five days ago, but the Tigers got the last laugh.
Caleb Gilbert was terrific in holding down Oregon State's offense. The right-handed sophomore allowed just one run on two hits with seven strikeouts over 7.1 innings.
LSU has an opportunity to win its first College World Series title since 2009 and seventh in program history.
Florida 3, TCU 0
The College World Series championship series will be an all-SEC affair after Florida blanked TCU thanks to a sensational outing from starter Alex Faedo.
Gators Baseball @GatorsBB
Dugout view of the final out! https://t.co/szmUxe1VaB2017-6-25 03:04:40
Over the course of 7.1 innings, Faedo struck out 11 Horned Frogs batters and allowed a meager three hits. According to the team's official Twitter account, Faedo has now recorded 44 strikeouts and just one run in 27.1 innings during the NCAA tournament.
With Faedo dialed in, all the Gators had to do was put a couple runs on the board to have the breathing room necessary to advance.
That offense came early, when catcher Mike Rivera put Florida in front 1-0 with a fielder's choice groundout before Christian Hicks doubled the Gators' edge in the fifth inning with a double that scored Rivera.
And while the Horned Frogs had a last gasp opportunity to put some runs on the board, closer Michael Byrne shut the door with three strikeouts and one hit allowed over the game's final 1.2 innings:
NCAA Baseball @NCAACWS
The Florida Gators are heading to the #CWS Finals! https://t.co/A16JdPw4Da2017-6-25 03:03:05
The Gators will now head to the championship series looking to secure the school's first College World Series title.