The University of Louisville will open play in the College World Series on Saturday evening at TD Ameritrade Park against a familair foe.
The Cardinals (51-12) will face Indiana (48-14), a team that they have faced at three different times during the 2013 season, with the Hoosiers taking two of the three contests.
With Chad Green on the mound, Indiana upset Louisville 2-0 in the season-opener for both programs at the Big Ten/Big East Challenge in February. The pair met again in mid-March in Bloomington, a 6-2 IU victory and again in early May at Patterson Stadium when the Cardinals claimed a 4-3 win.
Green will get another shot at the Hoosiers tonight.
"It's exciting because it's what we talked about all season long," said Green (10-3). "It's a priveledge to start the first game. I'm going to try to do what I've done all year and go for 5 to 7 innings.
While the junior righty is familiar with tonight's opponent, he doesn't neccessarily view it as an advantage.
"It's good that I've faced them before," he explained. "There's not really an advantage, because they've seen us and we've played them three times, so we kind of know what to expect. We just have to play good baseball."
The all-time series between the two programs is knotted at 21 wins apiece, but the Cardinals hold a 12-4 advantage in the series since the arrival of Dan McDonnell in 2007.
"We play them every year," said McDonnell. "We respect them a lot and we know what their strengths are. We know it's a good challenge. All eight teams out there are very good. I'm taking it as an advantage that at least we know how good our opponent is because we've seen them in person.
Left-hander Joey DeNato will throw for the Hoosiers tonight. The junior started against the Cardinals in the season-opener, throwing 4 innings of work without allowing a run.
Saturday night's winner will advance to face the winner of the Oregon State - Mississippi State contest on Monday night at 8:00 pm. The loser of the game will play on Monday at 3:00 pm.
Tonight's game will be broadcast on ESPN.
Relief pitcher Joe Filomeno injured his forearm in the Cardinals win over Vanderbilt is questionable for the College World Series and not available to against the Hoosiers.
Second baseman Nick Ratajczak continues to recover from his injured shoulder and is available to play. The senior is not expected to start.