Michigan scored in all but one inning against a struggling Texas Tech pitching staff and beat the Red Raiders 15-3 on Friday to continue its improbable postseason run.
Next stop: College World Series finals.
Jimmy Kerr homered twice and had four hits, Jesse Franklin had three hits and four RBIs and the Wolverines scored double-digit runs for the 20th time this season.
One of the last four teams to receive an at-large bid to the 64-team tournament, the Wolverines (49-20) reached the CWS for the first time since 1984 and will play for their first national championship since 1962.
They’ll play a best-of-three series against Vanderbilt or Louisville starting Monday.
No Big Ten team has won the title since Ohio State in 1966.
Michigan starter Karl Kauffman (12-6) beat the No. 8 national seed Red Raiders (46-20) for the second time in a week. Kauffman, who pitched seven innings last Saturday in a 5-3 victory, worked out of trouble in three innings and left after the sixth.
Tech’s Micah Dallas (7-2), who took his first loss of the season after a rough three-inning outing against the Wolverines last week, was knocked out in the second after the first three batters reached. John McMillon was the first of six Tech relievers, and five of them gave up at least one run.
Tech pitchers issued 12 walks, one off the staff’s season high, and gave up 14 hits.
Ten of Michigan’s 14 RBIs came with two outs, and the Wolverines still left 14 runners on base.
The teams met five times this year. The Red Raiders swept a three-game series in Lubbock, Texas, in March, outscoring the Wolverines 29-10. They managed six runs in two games against Michigan at the CWS.
The Wolverines, who lost five of seven to end the regular season and failed to make the championship game of the Big Ten Tournament, have won eight of 10 games in the NCAA Tournament. That includes winning two of three against No. 1 national seed UCLA in the super regionals.
HOLT OUT AGAIN
All-Big 12 right fielder and leadoff man Gabe Holt was out of Texas Tech’s lineup for the fourth time in five games. He fractured his left thumb sliding into first base in the second game of super regionals June 8 and had surgery to put in pins. He was 1 for 5 in a 4-1 win over Florida State on Wednesday. Easton Murrell was in his spot at the top of the order.