Houston Astros pitcher Lance McCullers Jr. pitched the last four innings of his team’s 4-0 ALCS Game 7 win on Saturday night, and he did so with some inspiration from a fallen friend.

McCullers was close friends and offseason workout partners with Jose Fernandez, who died in a boating accident in Miami a little over a year ago. The right-hander admitted that he twice used Fernandez as inspiration as he tried to close out the New York Yankees in Game 7.

“I said, ‘Hey, show what you got, because Jose would,'” McCullers said, via Tyler Kepner of the New York Times. “Dead serious. Stepped off the mound, looked down. You know, people you loved from your past, they’re never off your mind. They’re always there, in the back of it.