April 6, 2012
Box Score |
COACH Mitch Gaspard
“Offensively we were really good for nine innings. We kept pretty good pressure on them, but the big blow was from Kenny Roberts. That was really big for our team. We’d been waiting on Kenny to deliver, and hopefully that’s the hit that will really jumpstart him and get him going. I thought that the key was in the middle of the game when Taylor Guilbeau came in. He really solidified the game and calmed things down. At that time Auburn had really gotten going offensively, and he was able to put some zeros up and put some quality innings out there. And then obviously there’s Dugas. Not only does he break the record for triples, but it was the biggest blow of the night. It kind of put the nail in the coffin for us at the end. It was a good night for us and a good night for our players. As I said earlier, they have continued to work at it and stay strong. This is our first SEC Friday night win, and we’ve got an opportunity to come in on Saturday with a better feel for things, and an opportunity to win a series.”
On winning the game even with being outhit:
“That’s just baseball, you have to have timely hits, and that’s been our Achilles’ Heel. We have not been able to deliver those hits, but tonight we did. We were able to get the bases loaded twice, we got a grand slam, and then we cleared them [Auburn] with a triple. There’s seven of our 10 runs right there. That’s the key, getting the big hits at the right times. If I’m not mistaken, all five runs in the third inning were scored with two outs, which is big. Timely hits are just the key to baseball.”
On Kenny Roberts:
“It has been a struggle for Kenny. He had a tremendous junior college career, he came in and has a really good fall for us. The expectations for him were very high coming in, and he struggled. He’d be the first to tell you. But sometimes a hit like that can really get you going and get you started. For our team to be what we want it to be, Kenny Roberts has to hit. He is a guy that can be an RBI producer, just like he was tonight. But he’s not a guy that hits singles. He is going to be a doubles, home run guy and really create a lot of havoc on the bases. That was really good to see from him. He needed that hit, and our team needed that hit. Our team knows that Kenny needs to be a big part of us if we’re going to start winning ballgames.”
#1 Taylor Dugas, OF
On how it feels to win this game:
“This is a huge win. Kenny got us rolling earlier with that big knock, and I’ve got to give a little bit of credit to them [Auburn] for battling back and closing the gap. We just got some big two-out hits, and we kept plugging along.”
On his triple in the eighth inning:
“We had the bases loaded, and in that sort of situation you’ve got to deliver. I was just telling myself that I was going to get a hit. I saw the infield coming in a little bit, so I just tried to hit something into the outfield, and it worked out.”
On tying the doubles record and setting the triples record tonight:
“It’s exciting. The doubles and triples are both good, but it all comes down to helping the team to win.”
#3 Kenny Roberts, INF
On his grand slam:
“They don’t come any bigger than that. That’s probably the biggest home run I’ll ever hit as a part of Alabama, but I’m just thankful that we won.”
On how important it is to get this win against Auburn:
“It’s huge. Whether or not we won any other game we had to win this game, because not only does it give us momentum going into tomorrow and Sunday, but it allows us to get back on track and continue playing well.”
On what Taylor Dugas does for the team offensively:
“He’s a huge part of this team. He is the spark to our offense. He leads off the bottom of the first inning with a double, and then he gets the big hit that puts the nail in the coffin at the end. Not only did he give us a huge lead, but he also got us the triples record. I’m happy for him.”
POST GAME NOTES:
* With a three-RBI triple in the bottom of the eighth inning senior Taylor Dugas set the Alabama school record for triples with 14, breaking the previous record held by Emeel Salem.
* With a 2-for-4 night at the plate, including a double in the first inning, Dugas now has 64 career doubles, tying Crimson Tide legend Dave Magadan for most all-time at Alabama. Moreover, Dugas now has 301 career hits, placing him in fifth place all alone and 21 hits behind Andy Phillips, UA record mark of 322.
* With his double in the first inning Dugas has now reached base in all 30 games this season, and 42 consecutive games dating back to last season.
* With three RBI, Dugas set a new season high, and matched his career high, which he has done five times in his career.
* With bases loaded junior Kenny Roberts hits Alabama’s first grand slam of the season, and Roberts’ first grand slam of his career. Alabama’s last grand slam home run was by Austen Smith vs. Louisiana State on May 8, 2011.
* Roberts’ four RBI’s are a career-high for the junior infielder, besting his previous career-high of three.
* Roberts tallied two hits in the game, the sixth time he has done so this season.
* Junior pitcher Charley Sullivan went for 4.0 innings, allowing five runs on 10 hits and three strikeouts.
* Ben Moore finished the night 1-for-4, extending his current hitting streak to nine games and his on-base streak to 21 games.
* James Tullidge was 1-for-2 with a walk and was hit by a pitch. He leads the team with a .391 average and a .563 on-base percentage.
* Jake Hubbard made his team-leading 17th appearance of the season, throwing a scoreless ninth inning.
* The five runs in the third inning equals the Tide’s highest output in the third frame this year, as Alabama notched five runs versus Tennessee earlier in the season.
* The 10 runs scored tonight mark the second-highest total of the season and the highest total in SEC play.