Facing one of the top offenses in the country, the second start of his college career and most significantly, elimination, Goodenow was tasked with neutralizing Louisville's juggernaut line-up.
He did more than that; he muzzled them.
A two-hit shutout by Goodenow, where he faced just two above the minimum, sent the Commodores into a make-or-break game Monday night, again against Louisville, where the winner will move on to the Super Regional.
"I just wanted to help my team win and we accomplished that," Goodenow said. "Hopefully we'll get them on Monday."
Primarily a relief specialist thrown into any number of different situations, Goodenow baffled the Cardinals with his breaking pitches all afternoon, making particularly good use of his slider. After jumping on the fastballs of Sonny Gray a day earlier, Louisville's batters were simply off against Goodenow's slow-down approach.
The Cardinals probably thought they'd be rid of him after a few innings. Surely someone used almost solely out of the bullpen would tire after 50 or 60 pitches. To be fair, even the Commodores thought so.
"It was strange, because we went into the game thinking, `Ok, let's see if he can get us maybe three, four, five innings,'" said catcher Andrew Giobbi. "He's really not used to throwing that much. A lot of times he'll come in, face one hitter, and he's done. Getting a complete game, two-hit shutout, you would have never guessed, especially against a team like that."
But that was before he retired the first seven hitters and 18 of the first 20, much to the delight of the Vanderbilt fans in attendance and the chagrin of the rest of the restless, red-clad crowd at Jim Patterson Stadium.
His previous long performance on the season was when he threw 4 2/3 innings of relief against Oklahoma State, way back on Feb. 28. Helped out by strong defense in the outfield and two expertly turned double-play balls in the seventh and eighth innings, Goodenow was in full command from pitch 1 to pitch 99, when Adam Duvall flew out to end the game.
The Cardinals had only been shut out once previously on the season, and their previous low for hits was four. On Saturday, when they won 7-1, their 1-5 hitters went 7-19 (.368) with all seven runs scored and five RBIs. On Sunday, they were 0-15.
Goodenow shrugged when asked if he expected to turn in such a lights-out performance.
"I was just trying to stay prepared," he said."D.J. (Derek Johnson) does a great job with all the pitchers, just talking about routine and just being prepared for anything you get, so I guess so."
Goodenow's ability to go the distance also gave Vanderbilt's other arms a much-needed rest after using four pitchers earlier in their 10-4 win over Illinois State.
"I just felt like we needed to send him out there as long as we could," Corbin said. "Everyone raised their hand to be ready to pitch, but the mere fact that he pitched a complete game saves us in a lot of different ways."