May 26, 2006
SOUTHERN MISS QUOTES
HEAD COACH Corky Palmer
Thoughts on the game
It was a hard game. I thought both teams played hard. We knew going in Memphis is a fine offensive club. We shut them down last time, but the game see saws back and forth and they got a big hit on us late. It was just a tough ballgame. I thought we played hard. I thought we made some mistakes. I don't know why but I thought we looked a tired team on our feet running the bases and getting the balls, and we may be. We'll take a little time off.
On the team's play early on
We weren't very sharp there. We weren't moving our feet and we were dragging. It happens, but we hit them with a four spot. We made a big mistake there. To be honest, but I didn't even know the rule until the umpire told me, and we clearly slid over the bag. There's no doubt. That was probably the play of the game because we get some runs knocked in. But still that could have opened up everything. We might have even had an infield single or something.
On the team possibly making a Regional
Well I hope so. We're 38-21 with a 34 RPI going in. You never know until your name comes up I reckon, but we had a good year. We beat a lot of quality teams. We had 38 wins, were fourth in this league. We'll wait and see, but I do feel good about it. Probably not as good as I felt the other three years because our RPI is not quite as good. Let's see where it shakes out Sunday morning. If we're in the Top 40, I think we'll be in good shape.
On reliever Daniel Best's struggles
He'll be fine. He was raising his arm too much the first time out the other night, and then we tried to drop him down. Then we may have confused him a little. We'll get him in the bullpen Monday and get all that straightened out.
On his team's play in the C-USA Tournament
I thought we were playing really good coming in. Other then Barry Bowden, I didn't really particularly like the way we played all together to get the first win. I thought we were sporadic on offense and didn't drive runs in. We started doing some things that we did early in the year, some mental lapses and some defensive lapses. That's part of baseball.
STARTING PITCHER Cliff Russum
On his performance today
I think it's pretty evident there. I really didn't give the team a chance to win. When your offense comes out and throws up a four spot like that early on, you've got to go out there, have a killer instinct and shut the door. I didn't do it. Memphis got a four spot right back and that's a big momentum change right there in the game.
Off speed really wasn't there. It's been like that the past few weeks. I've just gotten away with it. Memphis is a good-hitting club and they hit the mistakes I threw up there. I knew that coming in. I knew I had to be sharp to beat them.
On the team's chances to make a Regional
I feel good. We've got a good team with good senior leadership, and like Coach Palmer said, we've beat some good teams out there. Hopefully, they'll see that and we'll get in.
CATCHER Kevin Coker
What makes the team dangerous in postseason play
I think we swing the bat well. We have very capable pitching that gets in streaks. When we get into a good streak, which we're hoping next week is the beginning of one of those good streaks, and hitting wise, we just need to come out and continue what we've been doing. I don't think this team's capability reflects a 38-21 record. I don't think this team's ability reflects a 1-2 record in this conference tournament. I think we underachieved in this tournament, and that's the bottom line. We're going to go home tonight and we're going to pray and say 'Let's see our name on the board Monday.'
HEAD COACH DARON SCHOENROCK
Thoughts on the game
It's another typical game. That's the way our wins have been all year where we have to create momentum in different ways. Tonight, I thought momentum was created early in the game. The big moment was K.K.'s little bunt that sneaks in there. We end up loading them up and then Adam cleared the bases with a double. We've been a big-inning team and kind of denied the big inning. Another huge part of the game is thinking we cut their four-run lead in half and got it back to 4-2. Our guys started thinking like we could hit with this bunch. Dusty went out and hung some zeroes in the middle part of the game and got some momentum back in our dugout.
On reliever Matt Yokley's performance
We've put Matt in that late-in-the-game type of role, and we kind of did that early in the season. He didn't have a lot of save or close opportunities, and as the season went on, he's been our guy that has the best swing-and-miss stuff on the staff. That's what you want late in the game. You want a guy that can make hitters swings and miss. He pitches below the zone very well and he's had some hard outings. He lost the lead to Ole Miss. I think all those things that have happened to him over the course of the season actually helped him in the ninth. Even when they got the two leadoff hits in the ninth, I didn't see a lot of panic in Matt. That was pretty big for a freshman to come in and do that.
On the relief effort overall
With what's on the line, the opportunity to play on Saturday in this tournament, this program hasn't played on Saturday in this tournament very often. I think once in the last six or seven years they've made it this far. And for so many new guys on the roster to come together and grind this far just talks a little bit about the character of this team. That's an awful good Southern Miss team that we beat tonight. It's a team that's probably going to be in a regional. Our program has not at that regional status yet because of the number of wins we have. So it's huge, and we still have an outside opportunity now. We get a chance to play against the No. 1 team in the country tomorrow and I'm anxious to see how our guys respond.
On who will pitch tomorrow
We're going to go with Lance Scoggins. He's been a midweek starter for us and when he's in the zone, he's got electric stuff. He's a guy that if you play defense behind him, he gets a lot of groundballs. If we play defense behind him, I think he'll keep us in the game. We still have some weapons in the pen that we haven't used.
RELIEVER DUSTY DAVIS
On his performance out of the bullpen
You know coming in as a reliever, you've got to get in there and throw strikes. Just try to hang zeroes as our team scores. You try to hang zeroes and keep the game close.
FIRST BASEMAN ADAM AMAR
On his performance today
Our hitters in front of me got on base, and the bases where loaded. I got up and I just tried to stay simple and stay short and just put the ball in play. Hopefully something good will happen and he left something out over the plate. I just put a good bat on it and I was fortunate enough to go to the right-center gap. I was just looking for a fastball or something or something in the middle-outside of the zone. He threw it right in the six zone, which is the outside of the plate and I hit it.
On the production of the top of the lineup
All four or five of us in the top of the lineup, even six with Robbie getting two hits today and an RBI, we had quality at-bats throughout the whole game. We had good pitch counts and we swung at good pitches, took good pitches, and it just kept us in it the whole game.
On the matchup with Rice and scheduled starter Craig Crow
He's a great pitcher. We faced him back in Memphis and they beat us that whole weekend. We're going to go out and play hard all nine innings, and hopefully it'll help us out.