June 2, 2005
The following quotes were taken at this afternoon’s 2005 NCAA Tallahassee Regional press conference. Head Coach Mike Martin
Head Coach Mike Martin
I would just like to congratulate the coaches for a great year. There are a lot of folks that would trade places with us and it is a fun time for all of us. Sometimes in the middle of the year we look at our staffs and wonder and then when it is all over it is a great feeling so congratulations to everyone.
We are excited to be hosting I just want to thank everybody here at
Can you talk about
It is the people here at
You have had other teams win 50 games but was this one of the most unlikely to get to that win total?
It was certainly a very young club with three freshmen and three sophomores in the starting line-up and for most of the year another sophomore at DH. It was a learning experience as we went through the season. I think the trip to
How has this team progressed? There were certainly some bumps along the way.
Yes there were. I think you can point to guys like (Aaron) Cheesman and (Kevin) Lynch that have been through this before. This Atlantic Coast Conference is a very competitive league. Then you put
Is preparing a younger team for postseason different than a veteran group?
Well, there is no doubt if you haven’t been there it is something new to you. Everybody that is in this tournament that has a guy who has never been in a regional can say that they know what to expect. You just hope that the young men have grasped what you try to get through to them throughout the season. I will say this though last week at
Talk about what it meant when Bryan Henry moved into the rotation and the other changes that revolved around that move?
Can you go over your rotation for the regional and the decision to start Michael Hyde Friday night?
We will go Michael Hyde and then Bryan Henry in the second game. We know Army has a predominantly right-handed hitting line-up and Michael Hyde pitched very well in his last outing. We just felt he matched up very well with Army.
Head Coach Steve Kittrell
First of all we were Sun Belt Tournament Champions.
We’ve been an up and down team this year – real erratic. We’ve been waiting for them to get hot. We hope we’ve gotten that button pushed. The Sun Belt Tournament we played our best baseball and played a really good FIU team that we won 6-4 in a very emotional game. We saw some things out of our guys that we hadn’t seen this year so we’re hoping we can take some of that momentum into the regional. You know baseball, who knows what happens. We’re going to be up against some good competition and we’ve got to rise to that occasion. We’re excited to be here.
Can you talk about your success against
Well, yes and no. We’ve been topped by
Can you tell us about the type of year pitcher P.J. Walters has put together?
PJ’s our number one. He’s a battler, he’s just a bulldog on the mound. He changes speeds and works both sides of the plate. We haven’t seen
Has your team exceeded expectations this year?
We never could get going. We had some key injuries at times during the year when we were playing some very good people. We never won more than four games this year with the exception of the Sun Belt Tournament. We just hope we can win five and now’s a good time to do that.
Head Coach Joe Sottolano
It is an absolute treat for us to be down here. We would like to thank the people of
I think want you are going to see, out of our program and our kids this weekend, is hard-nosed baseball and kids who have a will to win. They are going to scrape and they are going to fight. We try to pride ourselves on good pitching, good defense and timely hitting. I think those are keys to anyone being successful. Those are things we try to do. Most importantly, I think we try to play together as a unit. We try to make sure that when we come off the field that we feel like we have done something special for each other and have gotten better for each other.
On some differences in coaching at West Point
One thing that may be considered an obstacle at a normal institution may be a little bit easier at our place. Something that may be considered an obstacle at
(How many of your seniors already have their orders?)
They have had orders for a while but their orders right now are to play baseball in
(What has Schuyler Williamson brought to your program?)
I think everyone sitting in this room has a feeling or an expectation of what a West Point graduate would be like, of what they stand for and what they epitomize. I really feel very comfortable in saying that Schuyler Williamson, along with the other ones, is that kind of individual. He is very strong willed; he speaks from the heart; he carries himself with a lot of pride; he is very family orientated; he has brought our program to another level in terms of his intensity and his commitment in his will to win. That has passed down to others. He is a two-year captain and we are very pleased for him to be a part of our team. He is very pleased to be part of us and be a part of the Army.
(What are your thoughts on pitcher Nick Hill?)
We feel that he is a very good talent who has really evolved. He is a quality young man who represents us extremely well. He brings a lot to the table and he is very passionate about the game. We are interested to see how he stacks up. He started last year the first game against LSU (in the NCAA Tournament) in that environment at Alex Box. Now here we come down here in this environment. We are very pleased and proud that he can stand on that mound and represent
(On the benefits of playing at LSU last season)
I don’t want to under estimate or over estimate it. I think last season our program took some strides in the right direction. We had played some decent teams during the regular season and then obviously going to LSU and playing in that environment was very important. Last night, we came over after dinner and saw the facilities. The kids kind of took a look and were obviously very impressed. We understand that the crowds are going to be big and loud and that we are going to be the visitors in game one. We are looking here are young men who sort of understand what they are getting themselves into. They have experienced it a little bit before. I think we have worked on some things in terms of communication. I think they sort of have a familiarity of what to expect. It’s a unique environment and great environment and it’s something that our kids have strived to accomplish in terms of coming here. This is their dream. “We are very excited to be here. It’s a class operation. Our ballclub, I’ve told many people, is just a tremendous group of young men I’m honored to be associated with. They play very hard and are just great to be around every day.
Head Coach Tom Slater
“I like the familiarity. We are staying at the same hotel we stayed at in Februrary. We are just excited to be here. I don’t think anybody does it better than Florida State. We are excited to be in a regional run by such a class program.
“Arnold (Hughey) has been tremendous for us every Friday. He’s really had a lot of quality starts and gotten us deep into games and allowed us turn the ball over to what is the strength of our club, the bullpen. You couldn’task for any more than what we’ve gotten out of him.
“As a coach what you strive for is to have guys that come out and work hard every day and compete hard every day. They’ve been outstanding.”.
“We are very excited to be here. It’s a class operation. Our ballclub, I’ve told many people, is just a tremendous group of young men I’m honored to be associated with. They play very hard and are just great to be around every day.