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May 21, 2015

Mik Aoki

Kyle Fiala


NC State – 3
Notre Dame – 0

MODERATOR:  Joining us for Notre Dame are Head Coach Mic Aoki and Kyle Fiala.  Coach, if you could open us up with an opening statement and then we'll take questions for the student‑athletes.
HEAD COACH MIC AOKI:  I thought Brian Brown pitched great against us, did a nice job sort of mixing in the fastball, changeup, breaking ball.  Kind of had us out on our front foot a lot throughout the course of the game.  They took advantage of the opportunities that they had, and unfortunately we couldn't come up with the timely hit when we needed to.  I thought it was on both sides a well‑played game and they just made a couple more plays than we did in that thing and kind of one of those you chalk it up to this is kind of baseball type of things.

Q.  Jumping ahead to tomorrow, what do you remember from your series with them and kind of what are your thoughts going into that one?
KYLE FIALA:  Yeah, I mean, it's going to be a well‑played game just like we always play.  We've just got to bounce back and not think about this one too much and just, you know, go out and do what we do, which is take the game one pitch at a time, compete the whole way and I think we'll be fine.  Just got to get past this one and it won't take long and we'll be good to go.

Q.  What was Brown doing so well against you that kept you guys off balance all game?
KYLE FIALA:  I think he was mixing speeds quite a bit nicely.  He went to that changeup quite a bit, had us ahead in a lot of stuff, and he got ahead in a lot of counts, which was good.  We would have liked to‑‑ when he got ahead, I didn't think we competed as well as we should have, but you know, he did an awesome job.

Q.  He obviously doesn't blow you away in terms of velocity.  Does that kind of factor into it, maybe a little harder to adjust to than somebody who isn't hitting 90 on the radar gun?
KYLE FIALA:  Maybe a little bit.  You know, I think we just didn't do a good enough job of staying back, and when we got down in counts we didn't compete well enough today.  You know, we got ahead of way too many off‑speed pitches and the fastball we couldn't catch up to.  So he did a nice job and just didn't compete as well as we should have down in counts.

Q.  Same question about tomorrow's matchup.  The series obviously in the regular season, a little bit different teams now at this point.  What do you look at going into that?
HEAD COACH MIC AOKI:  I mean, I think Virginia's been on a pretty good roll, feeling pretty good about themselves as they should have.  They've gone in and go on the road and beat Carolina and kind of had their backs against the wall and have played very well in that role.  I think when I look back at that series back in South Bend where they swept us, I think that outside of the one game, both games were pretty well played, both games were pretty tight going down the stretch.  We were a little nicked up, they were a little nicked up.  So I think this should be probably‑‑ you know, they're two programs that are built on pitching and defense, so I think, you know, one of those baseball idioms where when you get the timely hit, when you take advantage of those opportunities, that's probably the team that's going to come out on the better end of the scoreboard.

Q.  Do you know who you're going to start and what do you think about the way your pitching staff is a little bit rested now after this one?
HEAD COACH MIC AOKI:  Smoyer will start.  I'm assuming they're going with Waddell.  I'm not a hundred percent sure on that, but Waddell is a good arm.  Kind of typical Virgina guy, you know, commands the fastball and the slider and that type of thing.  We like our chances with Ryan.  Ryan's been good for us all year long, given us an opportunity to go out there and win baseball games.  So we just come down, like Kyle said, we just try to take it one pitch at a time.  If we can get into their bullpen obviously with Sborz not being at the back end after the performance he turned in on Tuesday, maybe we can do a little something there.  But I think it should be a pretty well‑played game I would think.

Q.  Kerrigan, the first two innings were a little bit rough but he seemed to settle down after the second inning.  What adjustments did he make that allowed him to be successful through the last three and a third?
HEAD COACH MIC AOKI:  I think he got back into the strike zone a little bit more, the breaking stuff got in there, I think he was a little more precise with his fastball than he was early on.  Certainly you give Dunand credit for coming up with that hit, you know, a timely hit to kind of get things rolling for them.  That second‑‑ the third run was, we kind of contributed to that which is a little bit unlike us with the lead‑off walk and the hit batter to kind of extend the things and kind of give them some free 90s.  Once he did that though, that's exactly what you sort of talked about is exactly what I told him coming off the mound.  I was proud of the way he settled back in, proud of the way that he competed the rest of the way.  Three runs in college baseball can disappear in the blink of an eye and I felt really confident that we would come back and do it, but Brown and Brit did a nice job.

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