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June 24, 2017

Kevin O'Sullivan

Christian Hicks

Michael Byrne

Alex Faedo

Omaha, Nebraska

Florida - 3, TCU - 0

COACH O'SULLIVAN: Obviously it all started on the mound again with Alex. He gutted it out. Made some really big pitches when he needed to.

Got some timely hits again. But that's kind of been us all year long. It was unfortunate that we lost Dalton there early in the game. We had to make some defensive adjustments. But I thought we played great defense. I thought some guys stepped up. That's kind of been us all year long.

We just have found ways to win, and our starting pitching on the weekend has been outstanding. And we beat a very good TCU team. They had a heck of a season. And I want to congratulate them on the season they had. And looking forward -- we're looking forward to paying LSU which obviously we're very familiar with. And excited to be here and hopefully we can get healthy by Monday.

THE MODERATOR: Questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Alex, going against TCU's lineup for the second time in a week, did you kind of feel like you kind of needed to switch your sequences up or anything like that?
ALEX FAEDO: Yeah, I mean, I think every team does their homework. So we looked back at the tape from that game and I figured they did the same thing so we had to make a few adjustments from what we saw and just executed the pitches that are called and just make timely pitches.

Q. Alex, we saw earlier this afternoon Oregon State lost yesterday and just really couldn't get the momentum back today. How were you able to come right out and kind of take that back with a strong start and how much importance did you put on it in making sure you didn't fall behind at all?
ALEX FAEDO: Just throughout the day I just tried to think back to my start last year when I was kind of in the same situation. And it all came down to one pitch. And that's what I tried to bring to the game this year, was maybe if I just -- I just can't make that pitch again that lost the game last year.

So I just tried to stay focused. We've been before in this situation, and I tried to bear down with every pitch I threw.

Q. I guess to build on that point, Alex, all you guys, really, having been in the situation before, how much of a factor is that, do you think, at this point?
MICHAEL BYRNE: All right. Well, I wasn't really a part of it last year. I was on the bench. Bench part, that was the part. You have to take it game by game. TCU is a heck of a team. And we had to go out there and play the game we did. And we did.

ALEX FAEDO: You know, we just really tried to stay loose. And just our big thing is just try your best and good things will happen right now. And as he was saying throughout the team, and we tried our best today and good things happened.

CHRISTIAN HICKS: Yeah, it helps that we had to bounce back all year. The game before has no bearing on today's game. You just flush that and come back out and try to do your best today.

Q. Michael, the situation against Skoug, when you came in, and it was obviously a big moment, you've been in those this year, you guys have been great in one-run games, and Coach said you're obviously a huge part of the reason for that. How much did that experience this year prepare you for what you saw in the eighth and ninth inning today?
MICHAEL BYRNE: Definitely had to have some impact, but I have to go out and make the pitches. Doesn't matter who the hitter is. Have to go out and throw strikes. All I was trying to do was get a ground ball, just happened to be a strikeout, so that was big. And had to get Cam out, which he got me last game on a double in the gap. Threw good pitches to him and got out of it.

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Coach.

Q. As you sit back as a coach, and you coached a lot of big-time pitchers throughout your career, you watch Alex do what he's done in the last two performances here, what goes through your mind watching a guy deal like that?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: Superior confidence. I think the players behind him, they play much better defense behind him than maybe anybody other than maybe Brady Singer. He just exudes aggressiveness, confidence. And our team has the utmost respect for him.

Like I said, I don't want to sound cliche-ish, but he's an even better kid. He's taken some younger players under his wing without any direction from me. And the team pulls behind him. Like I said, Tigers got a special one at pick 18.

Q. As you said last night, you made a couple of different changes to the line-up today. Hit off of Deacon and Austen getting hits, how did that affect the offense today?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: I don't know. We were just kind of stale. We were hitting .200 coming into the game today, I think, as a team. So the names didn't change other than Dalton having to come out of the game.

So I thought Blake played really good defense at second. It's the first game that Deacon played short. Usually we have Christian Hicks play short, but he was our DH. So we had some limited options at that point. But I thought Deacon played some really good defense at short as well for the first time this year.

Q. What exactly happened to Dalton and what's the initial report about whether he'll be able to play in the championship series?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: I think he just had some back spasms. And I guess early indications he'll be fine to play. But obviously that will be up to the medical staff. But they feel confident he'll be ready to go by Monday.

Q. When you're playing a team second time in the span of a week, it's the same pitching matchup, how does that change, I guess, the way you prepare your guys for it? Do you try to attack them any differently, as far as their hitters and their pitcher?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: Yeah, I thought we threw more fastballs in tonight. And I think with Michael Byrne, especially, it was evident that they were sitting soft, some sliders late in the count. You could see immediately once they got the base hit in the 6 hole, we went a lot more fastballs. These guys and their fastball. He threw some really quality changeups, too, to some of those left-hand hitters. It was a big strikeout with Skoug, big strikeout at that point.

Q. I guess kind of looking ahead here, I was out there when you guys played LSU out in Gainesville. What are you kind of seeing from LSU as you guys get ready for the finals now?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: I think they've been playing as good as anybody in the country at this point. Offensively they've been clicking. I'm assuming Poché will go Game 1. And we've obviously got Singer. We've got to figure out Game 2.

Obviously they're probably in the same similar situation. They'll have Lange in Game 3, if it got to that point. So they're just playing really good. We played them enough. I've seen them play -- I think they won -- I don't know -- somebody said 25 out of the last 28 or something like that. So we certainly know we have our hands full.

Q. Is Faedo done here, do you think?
COACH O'SULLIVAN: I'm not going to take that that far ahead. I would probably say, yeah. I would probably say, yeah. We'll have some other guys step up. Maybe Tyler Dyson get a start, that type of thing. So we'll see. The only thing I'm worried about right now is Monday night with Singer.


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