Oregon Ducks Baseball Poised For Future Success Following Defeat in Super Regional.


The fans at Oregon’s PK Park provided a tremendous Super Regional atmosphere this past weekend, but the home team came just short of punching a ticket to Omaha.

The Ducks dropped Sunday’s winner-take-all third game of their series with Oral Roberts, 11-6. ORU advances to the men’s College World Series, becoming just the third No. 4 seed ever to reach Omaha.

Ducks head coach Mark Wasikowski joined John Canzano on 750 The Game and reflected on the amazing atmosphere the fans and university provided at the ballpark.

“That was an awesome venue,” Wasikowski said. “I know how awesome it was because even our rivals were sending all kinds of crazy messages to me about how it was great that we lost and this that or the other, and all that tells me is great, that sounds like we got a rivalry.”

Wasikowski said he loves the rivalry with the Beavers, who won national championships in 2006, 2007 and 2018, and that Oregon’s success this year only adds to the quality of the rivalry.

“They’re fans. I love it. I think it’s great. It’s healthy. It’s healthy for our state. It’s healthy for our game. And you know what, I want Oregon State to be good, I want Oregon to be good, I want the environments to be great. The better the sports are at the two schools the better this whole thing is.”

Oregon was on the bubble of the NCAA Tournament field before winning a late regular-season series at Utah and then running the table to win the Pac-12 Tournament in Arizona to earn an automatic bid to the tournament.

The Ducks won the Nashville regional as a No. 2 seed with a pair of wins over Xaver and a win over host Vanderbilt.

They won the Super Regional opener over Oral Roberts, 9-8, coming back from an early 8-0 hole to win on a walk-off in the bottom of the ninth off the bat of senior Drew Cowley. It was the largest comeback in Super Regional history.

In game two of the series, Oregon held a one-run lead with one out and the bases empty in the bottom of the ninth, but saw Oral Roberts rally for their own walk-off victory, 8-7, sending the series to a decisive third game on Sunday.

“Oh absolutely, I would take that. I’d take it in a heartbeat,” Wasikowski said about being in that situation with a chance to reach Omaha. “I’m so proud of these kids. They laid it out there on the line. No club has a perfect club at the end of the year. And we fall in that as well. 

“We weren’t able to get it done. And that disappoints me. I see the progress, I see the growth. We ask our players just to get better every single day. I know this program’s getting better. I’m excited for our state to where they can have something else to do and really have other things to get excited about.”

Wasikowski said as disappointing as the final result was, the future remains bright in Eugene.

“Things are clearly going in the right direction, we’re excited about it, a lot of this thing has to do with relationships and recruiting. And boy, my staff and I are excited to get back on the road and recruit and bring in quality people and players and keep building this program.

Things just don’t happen overnight. If they do it’s probably not real. And we’re just going to keep going to work every single day.”

As for what this year’s team accomplished, Wasikowski said he feels like they earned the respect of baseball fans everywhere.

“We earned people’s respect because they probably knew that we weren’t a perfect commodity and they still just appreciated the blue-collar work ethic that we threw out there and that’s how we played and that’s just how we are off the field.”

Listen to the full interview with Oregon Ducks head coach Mark Wasikowski with John Canzano at the podcast below.

John Canzano delivers the Bald Faced Truth afternoons 3-6 p.m. exclusively in Portland on 750 The Game.