June 3, 2005
Head Coach STEVE KITTRELL
Well, Auburn came out of the shoot and really swung the bats with a six run inning and really broke our backs a bit. When we tried to battle back, they battled back with three, I think in the seventh. We just never could close that gap. We have to tip our caps to Auburn. I think the layoff really helped them, they really played well, swung the bats well and came out fighting today. There’s no question about that.
(On getting back to the winner’s bracket)
With this new format, we just have to work our way back here. All we play is one game tomorrow and if we can win it, then we’ve got a shot, whether we play Auburn or Florida State or Army. Then we just have to play a doubleheader and if we can win two in a row, then we’re in the finals against somebody. We have to beat them twice but you have two days to do that. It is only a four team regional and I think the key is going to be the next ball game. We show up and play a good game and get back to winning and I think if we do that, then the momentum might shift back to us. But certainly we’ll have to play really good baseball. If you look at it, it doesn’t matter which game you lose. If you lose the first game, then you actually get a little more rest. You play at 1:00 p.m. tomorrow then you don’t play again until the next day at 1:00 p.m. If you win the first game and lose the second, then you play at 7:00 p.m. and turn around and play again at 1:00 p.m. the next day. It is a doable thing so hopefully we can respond.
(Auburn’s adjustments to pitcher P.J. Walters)
Well I think they make good adjustments to his style of pitching and things kind of went their way. They hit the ball really well and got the key hits when they had to have them. They hit the ball at the right time to drive in runs. You have to give them a lot of credit, they were ready to play.
P.J. WALTERS, PITCHER
(On his outing against Auburn)
I fell behind early in the count a lot. I made a lot of mistakes today and when I did, they were right on it. They had some guys who could get on base and run the bases. Again, when I made my mistakes they hit them and piled it on. When they hit it, they hit it hard.
JOSH MORGAN, FIRST BASE
(On the pitching lineup for Auburn)
Arnold will tell you he was throwing a lot of fastballs and throwing well. He started out up in the zone and we were popping a lot of things up. Later we figured out some of his stuff and we started coming in on it. He started throwing a lot of fastballs and then they went to Madden and he came in throwing really well. Nix finished it out for them. Now we have to come back and win another one. I was just hoping we could keep the game at 8-5.
HEAD COACH TOM SLATER
“I was just very proud of our ball club today. I thought we came out and had a tremendous approach at the plate to a very good and competitive pitcher in P.J. Walters. I’m real proud of our kids. I thought our pitchers did a tremendous job of filling up the strike zone and it was very well played defensively, offensively and on the mound by our guys.”
(when USA cut lead to 8-5)
“I thought our guys did a nice job of answering when they cut it to 8-5. I thought all game long we pressured them on offense and that was big for us. John Madden, got him in the game and needed to get him out when we did. Didn’t want to extend him past 50 pitches and he was at 49, which is when we took him out.”
“This guy is a stud right here (starting pitcher Arnold Hughey) and I was hoping he would be able to maybe get us through seven or eight and then just use John (Madden) and maybe Michael (Nix) one each but it didn’t work out that way. They had good at bats. They did a nice job. They had a good approach to Arnold and he made some good pitches. In the sixth, they were on him.”
KARL AMONITE – 1B
“We already faced him (USA pitcher P.J. Walters) so we kind of had an idea of what he was going to do. Throughout the week we practiced that since we knew we were going to be in this regional. I think that really helped our approach.”
“It was a two-seam fastball over the middle of the plate. I was just looking to put something in play.”
JOSH DONALDSON – 3B
“He’s a fine pitcher (Walters). We got the best of him today. Our team played well and had a good approach today.”
ARNOLD HUGHEY – STARTING PITCHER
“I don’t think I ever really got in that groove. I wasn’t able to settle down and get real comfortable. I was just out there battling really the whole time. I left some pitches up early, the home run was up right across the plate. I settled down a little bit after that and made some pitches, got some fly balls and after that, came back out in the 6th and didn’t really have location. Everything was up and they were just hitting it.”