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May 23, 2018

Monte Lee

Logan Davidson

Chris Williams

Seth Beer

Durham, North Carolina

Clemson - 21, Notre Dame - 4

MONTE LEE: Well, obviously the fourth inning was good to us. From time to time you see those types of things happen. You know, as a head coach, it's a lot of fun to watch your guys put together that many quality at-bats in a row and you can see that momentum just building and building in that inning. But we've also -- we've all been on the other end of it, too. The one thing that I felt like we did a really good job of is even though we put together the fourth inning where we scored so many runs, I felt like we had good at-bats after that, too. I didn't think that we let the score dictate how competitive we were with our at-bats and on the mound and defensively after that. We continuously talk about playing every pitch of every ballgame, respecting the game and playing the game the right way, and I felt like we did a good job of playing a complete game today. But offensively we were very, very good.

Strider was off a little bit today, struggled to command his fastball, was behind the count a little bit, Notre Dame made him pay early in the game, but Mat Clark did a phenomenal job for us coming in out of the bullpen, had bases loaded, nobody out and got out of it. Thought he threw the ball very, very well. Holt pitched out of a tight spot in his one full inning of work. And then Ryne Huggins, it was great to get Huggins in the game, and he threw the ball well. If you look at it, that's four freshmen that pitched for us today, so very proud of our guys, our young guys who don't get to touch the ball a ton. Strider does, obviously, he's pitched a lot for us, but Clark has done a really good job the last two times out and Holt and Ryne did a really good job for us.

Felt we played a good game defensively outside of a couple missed plays there in the one inning, but overall played a really good baseball game, and good to get a win here in Game 1.

Q. Logan, you homered from both sides of the plate a week ago. Were you thinking about it there when you came up, to think, man, I've got a chance to do it in the same inning?
LOGAN DAVIDSON: I'm not going to lie, I was thinking about it.

Q. Just kind of walk us through it. What are you looking for in that at-bat and what's going through your mind when you see it start to clear the wall there?
LOGAN DAVIDSON: Well, in that second at-bat right-handed, bases were loaded, so I was kind of expecting off speed at some point. I didn't get it earlier. I mean, I got it later than I thought, fastball, took a good hack at the first one. Second one was kind of right there, but I was, again, looking off speed, so he kind of got me there. And then I finally got that curveball. He just kind of left it up, and I took a good hack at it, and it went out. I think it hit a table or something, I don't know.

Q. Seth, four straight games you've hit one over the wall. Talk to us about the home run today. Kind of been waiting, Clemson fans, to see the three of you guys, the big three play well at the same time, and obviously today you guys did it in the same inning.
SETH BEER: You know, I was just looking for something in that situation, runners on base and stuff like that, and Wilkie did a great job the at-bat before to get on base and gave me an opportunity to drive him in. I was just looking for something over the plate. Guy just came in the ballgame, so you know he's going to try to establish his fastball early, so I was just looking for something up in the zone to drive, and I put a good swing on it.

And I would say for all of us, going on all cylinders, I think that was a big deal. Every at-bat throughout that whole ballgame no matter what the score, everybody was competing, and that preaches a lot to a ballclub, that we're not giving away at-bats, and it's something you look for in a great ballclub.

Q. Logan, just to revisit your two home runs, you said you did it a week ago -- I'm not sure who the opponent was, but I'm assuming that that was not in the same inning. Have you ever done it in the same inning before?
LOGAN DAVIDSON: I have not. I've actually never done it until last week against Pitt. I think it was a Friday game or Saturday game. But yeah, it was kind of history for me because I've never done that. I don't think the Tigers have ever done that, as well.

I mean, I've definitely never done it in the same inning before that, so that was a pretty cool experience to even have the opportunity to get back up there. That was pretty awesome.

Q. Chris, can you kind of describe what it's like to be part of an inning like that where it just goes crazy? You put up 17 runs that inning.
CHRIS WILLIAMS: I mean, I don't really know how to describe it because I know -- I honestly like -- when Logan hit his home run, I was like, oh, my God, I'm two batters away from coming up to the plate for the third time. I was like -- like I didn't know what to think about. I was like, how do I prepare for this at-bat honestly. I was just kind of mind blown that we sent 29 batters up to the plate.

I literally had to try my hardest to stay focused, to stay locked in for that third at-bat, and I mean, I'm glad it kind of paid off. You know, like that doesn't happen, and I'm really proud of our guys to do that, like to go into the game tomorrow with this kind of game behind our back.

Q. Chris, we've all seen Bull Durham, we've all seen the bull hit in the movie. What are you thinking when you see that ball clang off the bull, and then for the teammates, what did you guys say when he came back into the dugout?
CHRIS WILLIAMS: I mean, it's pretty cool to be like -- to be able to do that because not a lot of people can say they actually hit the bull. I mean, kind of sucks I don't get a free steak out of it. I'm going to have to go up there and buy my own steak. We'll pretend it's free steak. But it's pretty cool to do that.

MONTE LEE: I'm just glad he didn't say that anything traveling that fast should have a stewardess on it. That's a quote from the movie when he hit the bull.

CHRIS WILLIAMS: Oh, I haven't seen it as much as he has. Quote-unquote, his favorite movie.

Q. Coach, looked like you guys were a different team after the weather delay. What did you tell your team?
MONTE LEE: Nothing really. I didn't say much to them. I knew it was -- I felt really good about our club over the last weekend at Pitt. Felt like we played good baseball at Pitt and felt like we had had some good practices. Felt like there was just a lot of really good vibes with our club going into today's game, so I felt good about it.

I think it was just a matter, again, of somebody getting on base and getting some momentum going, and it started with Hawkins to lead off there, I want to say in the third inning. Hit a double down the line, and then we score a run on a two-out hit by Wilkie, and next thing you know you could see that momentum start to turn. We're just a big momentum offense.

I felt like we just needed to get a couple guys on base, get a hit with runners in scoring position. It's just amazing with our club how well we play offensively when we hit well early in the game with runners in scoring position. You saw it in Pitt early in Game 1 when we scored 16 runs in that game. We had the one inning where we swung the bats really well. Wharton I think with a two-strike hit in that game, in that situation, to get us going there. But you could just kind of see it going.

I think Wilkie's at-bat with two outs, we knew at that point that the momentum was getting ready to shift in our dugout, and I think Mat Clark had a big part of that, as well. For Mat to be able to pitch out of that spot was pretty big for us at that point in the ballgame.

Q. With this game, not necessarily affecting your spot in the standing or the pool, how impressed are you with your group to be able to keep their eyes on the prize and eyes on the task at hand and also to respond in such a way after the rain delay with as much of an approach as you guys had?
MONTE LEE: Well, I think our players will tell you that if any of them had any sort of inclination that this game didn't matter how much that would bother me. So it's a big deal in our program. We never, ever, ever talk about the importance or lack of importance of one game versus another, so our big messages are always be consistent regardless of the opponent, regardless of what game you're in mid-week, Friday night, Saturday, Sunday, trying to win the series, trying to get back in the series. Doesn't matter to us. The bottom line is we want to play good baseball.

So I think that's just kind of a message that these guys have heard since they've been here is that every day matters to us, and we want to play good baseball regardless. We knew that -- I think everybody knew that as far as the tournament goes that it didn't have an impact on the tournament, but it certainly does. You know, when you swing the bat the way we swung the bat today and we pitch the way we pitched today, we certainly hope that we can carry some positive momentum into tomorrow's game. You know, and again, we're trying to put ourselves in a position to be a national seed on top of that, so this game certainly did matter.

Q. You told us Monday that you want this team to have fun, and out there in between innings you had to do a TV spot and you had bubble gum on your hat and you were dodging sunflower seeds. Is that something you like to see, even though it's picking fun at you a little bit?
MONTE LEE: I think the guys know that -- you know, for me personally, I don't like having gum on my hat, no. I would say that that might be a little bit too much. If I knew that was happening, somebody may have gotten an elbow. But no, our guys have fun in the dugout, and they know that I have a lot of fun with them. I want them to be comfortable being them. That's a big part, again, of our program. I'm not trying to produce robots. I want to make sure that our guys enjoy every single day that they get to wear the purple and orange. I want them to enjoy being together, and I want them to feel like their head coach is somebody that they can enjoy this experience and this journey with.

But I think they also know when I need to be the head coach, I can be the head coach, and when I need to discipline these guys, I can. But gum on the hat, maybe a little bit too much. Upside down man, I liked that one. That one was pretty good. They did some pretty good ones. Spencer and Weatherly like to do like there's bees in the dugout. I've seen all kind of antics now. I think some of that is good, but at some point it can be a little bit much. But it just is what it is. I would rather them be loose and enjoy the experience on game day than be tight and be serious. That's just me personally as a head coach.

Q. Pitching plans for tomorrow?
MONTE LEE: Yeah, we will go with Crawford, so Crawford will throw tomorrow.

Q. Pulling Strider early, will that make him able to come back a little bit sooner?
MONTE LEE: Yes, we were trying to keep him -- we took him out with the mindset of being able -- we were going to pitch Clark and Strider today regardless, whether we started one and pitched one out of the pen or vice versa, we wanted to pitch both those guys today, and we also wanted to try to keep their pitch count short enough to where we could bring them back later in the week. So yes, that is why we took him out at that point.

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