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June 1, 2019

Kevin O'Sullivan

Matt Dalton

Kendrick Calilao

Jack Leftwich

Lubbock, Texas

Florida - 13, Army - 5

THE MODERATOR: We'll start with an opening statement from coach and then take questions for the student-athletes.

KEVIN O'SULLIVAN: First of all, I want to congratulate Army on a great season. Jim and his staff did an incredible job getting to this point. I've known Jim for a long time and he just continues to win wherever he's at, so congratulations to them.

As far as we're concerned, Jack gave us the start we needed. Got us deep in the ball game after having to go to the pen yesterday in the second. Got a lot of offensive production, we scored early, which I thought was important. Gave us a lot of momentum. Kendrick obviously had a big day at the plate with five RBIs and Wil had a good day. I thought Brady McConnell had a good day, even though he didn't get any hits. He hit the ball hard quite a few times.

So all in all it was a very good day for us offensively, pitching-wise and defensively. So look forward to playing tomorrow.

THE MODERATOR: Take questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Jack, what's your mindset? Obviously it's an elimination game, the bullpen's extended, you needed to get 24 outs yesterday, what's your mindset before the start?
JACK LEFTWICH: Just to try to go deep in the game and attack and just get early contact. I didn't really think anything of it because the elimination game, because like I threw in three of them last year and Missouri was kind of like an elimination game too and so it's just the same mindset of attacking every hitter.

Q. For all three of the players: Was today's game what you guys needed after the way last night wrapped up, getting back positive momentum with a chance to play again tomorrow?
KENDRICK CALILAO: Yeah, of course, obviously if we lost the game then we would be done for the season, so our goal today was to come out on fire and just take it one game at a time, and came out with the W today.

JACK LEFTWICH: I think the same. Just good momentum and the hitters have been doing great all year. So for us to pitch pretty good and limit their runs was good.

WIL DALTON: Yeah, I definitely think that coming out it really started with the pitching, and Jack set the tone and hopefully that creates momentum for the pitching staff, and helps them see how to be more consistent and throw strikes to help our defense stay more into the game. And then our offense was exactly what it's been all year, so.

Q. Kendrick, what has this been like, your first NCAA tournament experience?
KENDRICK CALILAO: At the end of the day, man, it's just baseball. Nothing new. Whether it's post-season whether it's regular season, you got to go out there and give it your all and continue to play hard.

THE MODERATOR: All right, we'll take questions for coach.

Q. After last night did you have any talk with Jack before the game?
KEVIN O'SULLIVAN: No, not at all. We kind of know where we're at. We talked more after tonight's game, to be honest with you.

We obviously needed for Jack to go deep into the ball game, which he did. It saved our pen, because we had to go to the pen yesterday so early. And the message today is Nick is going to have to do something similar to that tomorrow, which he's certainly capable of doing, to get us into the second game tomorrow. So at some point a bunch of these freshmen are going to have to contribute, whether it be three outs or six outs. Other than Nick tomorrow, and maybe if we're lucky enough to advance to the second game, the starter for the second game, everybody's just got to kind of contribute and just be consistent.

So but it's one game at a time at this point. The way Nick's been throwing, I'm looking forward to getting him back out there.

Q. Jack's been really good his last two, three starts. Is it anything different or is it just the blister healed, his ankle's fine, just being healthy?
KEVIN O'SULLIVAN: I think it has to do with probably a combination of things. He's healthy, obviously the blister was something that we just couldn't control and it lingered for a long time. So when you take that much time off, obviously you get out of your rhythm, I think he's just starting to find his rhythm now.

Obviously he was one of our better guys at the end of the year. He pitched in three elimination games in the regionals, supers and then obviously against Texas Tech in the World Series. So it's good to have him back to form, but it's just taken awhile because of the blister.

Q. You had the short turnaround last night to the early game today, now you got the full night off. How much is that going to help you guys? How much do you hope that helps you guys going into tomorrow where you got the two games, but at least it's a full 24-hour cycle as opposed to a quick turnaround?
KEVIN O'SULLIVAN: I don't know if a few hours makes that much of a difference. I guess playing a doubleheader it would maybe have some sort of significance to it, but they're resilient, they're young. At this time of the year it's either play well or your season's over. So they're probably, it's probably more of a rehydration thing more than being tired at this point, and that was something that was reiterated at the end of the game.

So we'll see, but I'm sure they're enjoying the night off. That's for sure.

Q. With you guys getting going again tomorrow morning, do you know who your starting pitcher is going to be?
KEVIN O'SULLIVAN: Yeah, it will be Nick Pogue. It will be Nick Pogue.

Q. What have you seen out of Nick these last three starts? What's allowed him to kind of blossom late in the season for you guys?
KEVIN O'SULLIVAN: Very similar to what Jack did today. He's got a slider that he developed, he's got a change-up he's always throwing for strikes. He's kind of like Jack where he's got the ability to throw two different off-speed pitches to right-handed hitters. Not many guys can throw their change-up to right-handed hitters very often and have it be a weapon. And he's been able to do that. So you got to honor both off-speed pitches. He has the ability to pitch to both sides of the place with his fastball.

He's been able to limit the damage, too, which some of the younger pitchers are still trying to figure out. So he's had three good starts in a row, so he'll start tomorrow, obviously.

Q. When you have a frustrating game like last night, where you feel like maybe of a couple pitches or breaks kind of go your way, all of a sudden you're in the winner's side, do you feel like those young guys it's easier or harder for them to kind of move on and get to the next day?
KEVIN O'SULLIVAN: I don't know, it's been up-and-down year for us that way. We came into the regional -- I mean, this team's capable of doing one of two things: We could win a regional or be out in two. That's the way we have been pretty much the whole year. We have been inconsistent. But there have been bright spots for them, a lot of freshmen arms, but it's just the ability to be consistent. That's been our issue.

But at this point of the year they're all going to have to contribute at some point because we put ourselves in a tough position having to win four games in a row. So we'll see.

THE MODERATOR: All right. Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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