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June 13, 2015

Andrew Benintendi

Trey Killian

Dave Van Horn


Virginia 5 - Arkansas 3

THE MODERATOR: Joined now by Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn, center fielder Andrew Benintendi and starting pitcher today Trey Killian. Coach, an opening statement.

COACH VAN HORN: I thought both starting pitchers, Jones and then Trey, they both did a tremendous job pitching their teams into six, seven inning, and both teams had a chance to win it. It was fairly well-played game. Couple things hurt us. We hit into three double plays. We didn't get the bunt down. A lot of times when you don't get the bunt down you end up hitting into a double play. That's kind of the way the game works. Just give credit to Virginia. I don't know how many runs they scored with two outs, but I'm going to think four. And they got the big hits. And their pitchers got out of some good jams. And we left too many runners on early in the game. We had a chance to bust it open, and Jones did a great job of getting out of it. But it was a good ballgame.


Q. Dave and maybe Trey, too. I think all five of Virginia's runs came with two outs, and you guys had trouble with runners in scoring position. I think you got the lead-off guy on six times, he came around twice. How big a difference were those two factors in the game? And if Trey could talk about their two-out hits too?
COACH VAN HORN: That's kind of the way the game went. We kept getting runners on. And we didn't punch them in. And they did. And that was the difference in the ballgame.

TREY KILLIAN: They had those runs or those hits with two outs, and they were all mistakes by me for the most part. The home run was supposed to be a fastball in and it was a fastball up and over the middle of the plate. And there in that fifth inning I kind of got lazy with the breaking ball and wasn't throwing it as hard as I was earlier in the game and didn't have much as much bite. I was leaving it up and they capitalized on my mistakes. They're a good team. They've got a solid lineup. And most of the time in this league, and especially here in the College World Series, if you make a mistake, other teams will take advantage of it.

Q. Dave, were you surprised at how aggressive Virginia was on the base pass, five for eight in stealing? Particularly in the eighth inning?
COACH VAN HORN: Yeah, they took advantage of Jackson being a little slow to the plate. That was a good move, the very first pitch they stole second. But when they stole third, I think the runner kind of gave it away and I think we should have recognized that on the mound. Sometimes you just have to peek, you have to look around a little bit and get an idea what's going on. He kept on creeping. Probably should have done a little inside move right there, whether he went or not, slowed it down. We threw him out three times, but they also stole five bases. So hats off to them.

Q. I guess for Dave and you guys, too, Zach's been so dominant in the postseason. I know he's only human, but what did you all think of his performance today?
ANDREW BENINTENDI: I don't know. I thought he hit his spots seeing him from center field. They just hit it. That's all I've got.

COACH VAN HORN: You know, I think the pitch -- there was one pitch there in the eighth, the top of the eighth with, I think, it was with a full count. The 2-2 pitch was close, probably a little out. The full count pitch, or maybe it was 1-2 pitch was close, made it 2-2. And then 2-2, we thought we had it. He called it just off the plate. Whatever the next pitch was doubled down the right-field line, and sometimes you get those calls, and sometimes you don't. And just a credit to their hitter doing a nice job with the next pitch. And he threw it away and he didn't try to do too much with it. He just hit it down the right-field line, went oppo, and all of a sudden they have the lead, and that was obviously a big at-bat.

Q. Andrew, could you talk about your second and third at-bats the sac-fly and the home run. Almost a miss-hit the sac-fly a little bit and what adjustment did you make from the second to the third at-bat that resulted in the home run?
ANDREW BENINTENDI: The sac-fly, my hands slipped on the bat, but I was fortunate to hit it far enough so Joe could score. And the next at-bat I just got a fastball in and kept my hands in.

Q. Coach, Kenny Towns from Virginia had a lot of at-bats, it was kind of a similar stage. What was your scouting report on him and how tough is he? In that type of situation you had him in a full-count there at that spot in the eighth inning?
COACH VAN HORN: He's awfully good. He's got a lot of RBIs and he's hitting in the four hole for a reason. We tried to get him looking for a breaking ball with two strikes on him in the middle of that count, and we zipped a couple of fastballs, like we said we didn't get it. And then he did a nice job with that last pitch. He's just a good hitter, clutch hitter, that's what it's all about. That's what it takes this time of year get big hits and make pitches. We've been doing it for the last few weekends and today it just didn't happen for us.

Q. Coach and Andrew, what effect did them bringing Sborz in have on you guys what you were trying to do offensively?
ANDREW BENINTENDI: I think his fastball was about 90 and his slider was about 85, 86. I think maybe we were too jumpy. His slider had a lot of bite up to it. So he seemed to be throwing it in any count. So, I don't know, just did a good job.

COACH VAN HORN: He hadn't given up very many hits. If you look at his numbers, he didn't give up very many. He didn't today. He gave up one hit to us, two hits, maybe one, struck out five. He's a good pitcher. Really, really tough on right-hand hitters as well.

Q. Trey, if you could answer that question I asked a minute ago about Zach not being his usual dominant self. And Dave I know it was a tough loss but you didn't have to eat up too many pitchers. How big is that when you've got to come back Monday and do you have any idea who you're going to start?
TREY KILLIAN: Like he said, we relied on Zach Jackson all year and more often than not he's gotten the job done for us. And today was a prime example of the game of baseball. He made quality pitches, I feel like. Got to a 3-2 count on that guy in the eighth inning, and he has a great breaking ball and not many people can hit it. Unfortunately, he got the bat on the ball, and, I mean, any other day that could have been hit right at someone, but just so happened today it didn't fall our way. And hit it down the line and they scored and they had the lead and we couldn't come back and score after that. But Zach Jackson is going to be just fine.

Q. Dave, I know it's a tough loss, but you only had to use Trey and Zack today, so you didn't have to eat up as much pitchers as maybe you would have had to. How big was that for Monday and do you know who you're going to start Monday?
COACH VAN HORN: Yeah, obviously we used a starter and a reliever and I think Jackson will be available again on Monday and the rest of the guys. So we feel good where we're at there. As far as who is going to start, we haven't made that decision yet. I think that what we'll do is look at McKinney and Jackson Lowery and make a decision between those two.

Q. Dave and all you guys, you guys have been very resilient this season, how do you think you'll bounce back from a tough loss like this?
TREY KILLIAN: I mean, we've got tomorrow to kind of sit back and maybe think about it a little bit. But we're going to have to move on from this game, obviously, see who we're going to play after the game tonight and I mean we're going to be fine. We have been all year. We've lost games all year and came back from them just fine. I think on Monday we're going to come back out, and whoever we throw on the mound we're going to take care of business and our hitters are going to get it done. So we're pumped.

COACH VAN HORN: You just try to learn from each game. And move on. Now we're down to the same situation that we were in this past Sunday. It's win or go home. So we'll bounce back and we'll play hard. And it's great competition. And whoever we play is going to be in the same boat we are. So we'll just relax, go practice tomorrow, and get ready to play on Monday.

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