In their third game, top-ranked Marietta College scored three times in the sixth inning to break open a 1-0 lead, and the Pioneers hung on in the end to top Buena Vista , 5-1.
"I'm proud of the way our guys battled tonight," said BVU head coach Steve Eddie. "They are a very tough team, and you have to play almost a perfect game to beat a team like that."
The Pioneers gained the early 1-0 lead with a run in the second. With one out, the team strung together three straight singles before the Beavers turned a 5-4-3 double play to get out of the inning.
BVU threatened to tie or take the lead in the fifth, loading the bases with two outs and Brock Yossi scorched a liner to left but a nice running catch was made by the left fielder moving towards the line to end the inning.
Marietta had runners at the corners with two outs in the fifth, but Reggie Kock got a big strikeout to end the frame and secure the one run game.
Marietta extended the lead in the sixth with three runs on just one hit. The lead-off man reached on a hit-by-pitch and later scored on a wild pitch. Two batters later, the Pioneers reached on a tough error issued to Yossi at third and he then moved up to third on a throwing error to second on a sacrifice bunt attempt. With runners at first and third, Marietta executed a safety squeeze, pushing the lead to 3-0, and with two outs and a runner at second, got a single up the middle for a four-run lead.
BVU tried to mount a comeback in the seventh, getting runners at first second before Brad Blum put the team on the board when he laced a single to left, scoring Andy Compton from second. The Beavers then had runners at second and third, but the Pioneers came up with a big strikeout to end the inning.
Kock went 5.2 innings on the mound, and allowed four runs on four hits, while striking out four. Kyle Dupic came on in relief, and allowed just one unearned run on two hits in 2.1 innings of work.
BVU out-hit the Pioneers 7-6, including a 2-for-3 effort from Blum and a 2-for-4 night from Compton.
Buena Vista faced Chapman University on Monday for the right to play in Tuesday's championship game, but the Beavers fell,3-2,in the 9th inning.
The Beavers couldn't get anything together in their half of the ninth as they went down in order.
"I felt like we played pretty well," Buena Vista coach Steve Eddie said. "We just didn't put together enough good at-bats and I have to give credit to their pitcher for that."
Chapman pitcher Travis McGee, who came into the game with a 5.02 ERA, tossed his first complete game of the season. He struck out nine, walked two and scattered nine hits. He also had a case of insomnia the night before.
"I couldn't sleep last night," McGee said. "Nervous, semifinal of the World Series and every kid's dream to be here. I'm just lucky I got to be a part of it and just happy to be here."
A critical situation for the Beavers was foiled in the seventh inning. Buena Vista had runners on second and third with two outs with cleanup hitter Kevin Kloewer, who has the team leader in home runs (12) and second in RBI (46), at the plate. Kloewer was unable to get anything through as he hit a soft grounder to the pitcher for the final out.
Chapman responded to tie the game at 2-2 when Mark Saatzer hit a shot off relief pitcher Kyle Dupic's glove. Second baseman Tyler Colo picked up the carom and tossed to first, but it wasn't in time, allowing Tyler Sumbrock to score from third.
The Beavers weren't able to accomplish anything after that as the final six batters went down in order.
However, the Beavers wrapped up their season with a school record 34 wins and its first appearance in the NCAA championship series. And yet, Buena Vista remained calm throughout.
"That was our goal coming in - to be the most relaxed and loose team - and I feel like we did that when we were playing," said Beavers starting pitcher Tyler Ringblom, who allowed just two earned runs in 6.2 innings. "It showed for us in the first two games and today."