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June 17, 2015

Harrison Bader

Alex Faedo

Kevin O'Sullivan

Buddy Reed


Florida 10 - Miami 2

THE MODERATOR: Representing Florida, head coach Kevin O'Sullivan, center fielder Buddy Reed, starting pitcher Alex Faedo and left fielder Harrison Bader. Coach, an opening statement.

COACH O'SULLIVAN: Well, first of all, congratulate Miami on a great year. They've got a tremendous club. It's not easy to get here. And we -- I'd like to say that about all the teams from Florida, to be honest with you. We played I think one team out of the state of Florida since the regionals started. So just goes to show you how competitive our state is baseball-wise. But as far as the game is concerned, it all got started offensively for us. We jumped out of the 3 spot with a couple of home runs in the first, and I thought that that kind of set the tone. In these elimination games, it's important that you kind of build some momentum early on. I thought we did that, and Alex came out with a 1-2-3 first and threw the ball extremely well, and I think every starter got a hit. The most important thing is I was really pleased with how we responded today from a tough loss on Monday night. And I thought we were very relaxed. Thought we came out with a purpose. And like I said we're looking forward to play on Friday.


Q. Harrison, you had hit a similar shot leading off the game against Virginia that kind of died on the track. What was it today? Did you kind of have a feeling that the ball was going to carry a little better after seeing the wind blow out? And just how did it feel to kind of get that pitch and be able to take it over the wall?
HARRISON BADER: Yeah, with the wind and everything, you saw the wind was blowing a little farther out. But with regards to the at-bat, that first pitch, I mean the first at-bat is kind of something you just want to give an at-bat for your team, see as many pitches as you can. Wasn't really trying to do too much, honestly, wasn't trying to do anything at all but just try to barrel something up and I was lucky, it kind of jumped for me. It definitely felt good to get out to an early start.

Q. Coach and Alex, do you think those two homers there in the first inning probably helped Alex more than anything on the team just to settle him in knowing he had a cushion there to start off?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: I think in retrospect, you probably would think that. But I had no anxiousness at all about Alex starting today. I know he's a freshman. But he's pitched in the SEC. He's pitched extremely well the entire year. And, you know, to go one step further, I mean we had four freshmen in the lineup, another freshman on the mound in an elimination game against one of our rivals and I thought all of them played like veterans and I thought Alex pitched like a veteran.

Q. Alex, what was it like just pitching out there in your first game of the College World Series?
ALEX FAEDO: It was great. The atmosphere was awesome. Once we got the lead, it let me settle in and it was a great experience.

Q. Miami had been such a good offensive team the entire season, but the times you guys faced them here, you were able to kind of control that offense. Anything that you kind of saw and kind of your approach with your pitchers that you kind of picked up with those guys?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: Well, I think we just pitched well. And you're right, their offense is one of the most potent offenses in the whole country. When you've got a guy like Abreu hitting eighth, who can jump a pitch at any time, you know it's a very difficult lineup to pitch to. I think it basically comes down to executing pitches obviously but getting the lead-off hitter and not giving them opportunities with big innings because they've got a chance, that lineup has a chance to score runs in bunches. I think if you can limit the lead-off hitter getting on -- and you have to make pitches with runners on base, because they're not going to be held down forever. But our guys made some big pitches when they needed to. And I thought the first night Miami had 11 hits, but we seemed to make some pitches when we needed to. And then today, you know, I think we built up that lead. And like I said, I think we did a nice job getting the lead-off hitter each inning.

Q. Buddy, talk about your home run in the first inning and what is it against Miami, you guys pile up I think 28 hits, 25 runs against a really good team in two games?
BUDDY REED: Well, on the home run, I guess I was just looking for a good pitch to hit. It was a 3-2 count. I battled that at-bat. And he left it up and I just put a good swing on it and the wind, I'd say, helped. In regards to the other question: Miami is our biggest rival, I think, besides Florida State. And you always want to jump out ahead in the first inning, which we did. It's really good. In the past two games I think we scored, I don't even know how many runs, over 20. But, like I said, it's our rival. It's really good to tack on runs. We did a great job, the whole offense did, Alex did a great job pitching, use this momentum to go to the next game against Virginia.

Q. Coach, you know how tough it is just to hit home runs out of this ballpark, you've been here a few times. What does it say to get four in a game, which I don't think has been done in this ballpark?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: I don't think that can be the approach in this ballpark, let's be honest. From day to day it changes. I think the wind has a lot to do with it. I thought we elevated the ball on a day where the wind was blowing out. I mean, it could be a totally different set of circumstances on Friday if the wind is blowing in. It's just one of those days where the wind was blowing out. But I do think they got them. But I thought Bader got every one of that on Monday night the start of the game. It's just the conditions kind of dictate home runs in this ballpark.

Q. Harrison and Buddy, after you guys had a tough day offensively the other day against Virginia, just what was the confidence level like, during practice yesterday, and just getting those three runs in the first, how did those help you guys loosen up there?
HARRISON BADER: I can speak for myself saying that we got to this place playing loose but doing everything with a purpose. Practice was exactly the same. I know Sully was -- his biggest message was not having a hangover from that tough loss. So that's just part of the game. We're not going to score ten runs every game. There are going to be games where we might get shutout. So the biggest thing was it was a fresh start. And at this point in the game, you are fighting for your life. So you have to lay it out there, every pitch, every inning, that's what we did, and that was what our approach was and it worked out for us tonight. So felt good.

Q. Harrison and Buddy, we kind of just touched on it with the two big games against Miami and then kind of a tough one against Virginia. Is there anything you guys did differently with the approach, or is it just the familiarity with the opponent? And what kind of things are you guys going to be looking forward to give some better chances and put up some runs against Virginia?
BUDDY REED: You know, baseball is a game of failure. You're not always going to succeed. Obviously hitting 3 for 10 and you're in the hall of fame. We always have a game plan. And baseball also you have to be confident. It's a game of inches like any sport, really. And I guess, yeah, we came out really good against Miami the first game. Lost a tough one but we stayed confident. Like Bader said, we had a loose practice. There's no like, oh, we're going to fail. We're just going to come in with the same game plan, keep our minds right, and just keep playing. And, like you said, hopefully we're going to come out really well against Virginia on Friday.

Q. It seemed like you guys kind of came out and, I don't know, with a purpose obviously, but was there a little bit of an edge, too? After you get two hits, shut out, out of character the other day, were you angry?
HARRISON BADER: I wouldn't say I was angry. I don't think anyone was angry. I think the biggest thing was to stay within yourself and just take care of business. Again, like I mentioned before, we're at a stage now where we're fighting for our lives. So whether we're pitching on the mound or in the box, everything has to be done with a purpose. And the purpose wasn't anger. It wasn't anything like that. It was just get the job done, do anything you can to put a good at-bat together. For us to jump out to an early lead like that definitely helped Faedo I think. And just all around a really good game. Like Buddy said, we're just going to carry that momentum into Friday against Virginia.

Q. Alex, Miami is obviously a tough lineup, a lot of power in that lineup. How did you approach them today and what pitches were working best for you?
ALEX FAEDO: I was just trying to execute whatever Sully called. But I knew I needed to keep the ball down. I didn't think I located as well as I wanted to, but defense played well and got out of some jams.

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