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2013 NCAA Softball Championship

Gainesville Super Regional

Florida 4, UAB 3

Coach and Player Quotes

May 25, 2013

 

Game Recap

The Gators defeated UAB 4-3 with a walk-off hit by Katie Medina in the bottom of the seventh inning. Pitcher Hannah Rogers threw a complete game, allowing three runs on six hits. Florida was led by third baseman Stephanie Toft who had two hits on the afternoon, while five other Gators had one hit apiece.

 

Florida Head Coach Tim Walton

Opening statement:

“First, I have to give a lot of credit to UAB. They are a good ball club. It was a really tough game, a lot of even stuff going on, on both sides of the diamond. They were very well prepared. When I look up on the board, I see a lot of similarities between their team and our team. I give them credit for taking advantage of every opportunity we gave them in some situations and opportunities that they gave themselves. Great pitching by both of their pitchers. On defense, their shortstop made some really nice plays. Give our fans a lot of credit. I’ve said it a long time, the fans that we have they come out and support us very well. Very proud of that, very proud of what we have built. We couldn’t have done it without them. I know that for sure. I am very proud of that and the energy that they brought for us and bring it back again for tomorrow please. I have to give our team credit. I thought they had some good at bats. I thought we hit the ball hard. Obviously, in a bases-loaded situation you’d like to see them squeeze some runs across in the sixth, but it probably wouldn’t have been as good for ratings and television audience if we did. Give our kids credit. It’s easy to fold a tent right there when you’re down by one. Katie (Medina) just missed catching that little line drive. Give our kids credit, they are tough. They don’t want to lose and I am very proud of them.”

 

On the bases-loaded situations:

“How many times have you seen me squeeze with the bases loaded? That tells you what is going through my head. I’ve been there, done that in those kinds of games and I am not going to sit there and sit on my hands when I’ve got a couple of hitters and a decent runner that can do some stuff. I was trying to take the bat not of Kristit’s (Merritt) hands, but put it in somewhere where she would be successful. I kick myself actually because I had another squeeze situation and I missed it. I didn’t miss it, I should have called it. It was hard to call because of the pitch count. I missed another one I should have done.”

 

Florida Sophomore Shortstop Katie Medina

On her game-winning hit:

“I just went up there looking for a pitch to drive. The pitchers from the other teams were throwing an outstanding game. I just went up there confident and tried to do my job for the team.”

 

On if she thought the shortstop was going to catch it:

“As soon as I hit it I looked at the ball and I saw it was just over the shortstop, so I knew.”

 

On her confidence at the plate:

“As I was getting into the box I knew that my team was behind me and their support gives me the confidence I need to look for that pitch and drive it.”

 

Florida Junior Pitcher Hannah Rogers

On her performance:

“I think just getting through the lineup once helped me a lot, just being able to read the batters’ swings, trusting Rocha’s calls, letting my defense work, and our offense being able to score runs whenever we needed to. That was huge for us.”

 

On coming back after the error in the seventh inning:

“I just stayed confident and knew that my team was behind me. I have to make sure I am picking our defense up. If there is an error, I always tell my team to just keep smiling as long you are getting outs we are going to come back and score.”

 

UAB Head Coach Marla Townsend

Opening Statement

“I think it’s quite simple – you have to understand, that’s not what we came here for. We did not come here for some moral victory; we came here to win a ballgame. I felt like we played our hearts out and they [Florida] won the freebie war. There’s lots of film to be watched and then we’ll get right back at it. We probably chose the hard way, but now our deal is to come out here and play two games tomorrow. We’ll get the first game and then obviously, it’ll come down to the second game. I’m proud of the way we fought, I’m proud of our defense, I’m proud of our pitchers – we just lost the freebie war and we’re not content, we’re not happy. We want to come out on top and we didn’t, but we’re thankful that we have another opportunity.”

 

On their sixth inning pitching change:

“Leigh Streetman is one of our most mentally sound, not just pitchers, but players. She is the person that I want out there in that situation. I felt early on that she was not getting the pitches she chose and she let that mentally get to her and that does not happen very often. I wish she would have made a few adjustments and trusted her defense. We don’t have to have every call to win a ballgame; we don’t have to strikeout every batter to win a ballgame. The team can come out on top. It was unfortunate for a couple of walks and it was unfortunate for a couple of hit by pitches because we’re better than that. A lot of teams would be happy going into the seventh inning with Florida, but that wasn’t us. We walked some batters that had struck out several times throughout the day and you can’t do that. You cannot give up free bases to a quality program like Florida. It comes back to haunt you.”

 

UAB Junior DP Kristen McGrath

On having to win two tomorrow:

“We do everything the hard way, absolutely everything, but there’s no doubt in my mind that we can’t come out tomorrow and win two.”

 

On their effort today:

“Even though we lost, I think we’ve definitely proven a point. Everyone doubted us before coming here and were like ‘Florida’s got this, Florida’s got this.’ We definitely proved a point – that we’re here to play and we’re not just content on being here.”

 

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