Alabama vs. Stanford Game 1 Postgame Quotes



May 26, 2011

Recap | Box Score | Photo Gallery 

Head Coach John Rittman
Opening statement:
“It was a great win. We told our team that we knew it was going to be a tough environment to play. They have great fans here and a very good Alabama team. We just needed to play the way we are capable of playing, and we did that tonight. We played relaxed and under control and took advantage of some walks and errors. Any team is going to take advantage of mistakes like that at this level. We know that we have to have a short memory though. Alabama’s going to come back tomorrow ready to go, and we’ve got to come out with our A game.”

On pitcher Teagan Gerhart:
“Teagan has done a great job of getting ahead of hitters and hitting her spots. We say this a lot but when you play in the conference we play in and face one through nine that can hit, it makes you mentally tough, and physically you have to make adjustments throughout that conference year. Teagan’s been through the conference now a full year facing that type of competition day in and day out. She knows that she has to finish. She’s been hitting her spots and getting ahead of hitters, and as a pitcher that’s the name of the game. We got a great defense behind her, and when she does get behind, she’s not afraid to let her defense go to work.”

On seeing Alabama not handle the short game:
“We are going to utilize the short game. We have some kids that can hit and some that can drive in runs, but we are going to utilize our short game. I think you saw that tonight. We utilized bunt situations very well tonight and had them kind of second guessing what we were going to do on the short game. That’s part of fast pitch softball, being able to move runners and execute the short game. It’s a very quick game. Sixty feet, you bobble it once, and these kids are going to be safe. You have to play quick, but you can’t be in a hurry.”

#4 Sarah Hassman, CF
On getting an early lead:
“It’s big because our pitcher can go out on the mound and pitch more to her strengths knowing that she has the lead. Looking at tonight, no lead is good enough. It definitely helped us.”

On winning the first game:
“It’s definitely huge. Upperclassmen have learned from our freshman year when we won our first game against Arizona and then dropped our next two, so we know it’s not over. We can sleep a little easier but I’m sure there are a few of us that will be up.”

#3 Ashley Hansen, SS
On taking advantage of the dribblers:
“Those can be game-changing, like we saw tonight. This game is a game of inches. Sometimes they are going to go our way, and sometimes they aren’t. When they do go our way, we need to take advantage of them. I think we did a good job of that tonight.”

On late pressure on the pitcher (Teagan Gerhart):
“She’s a very mentally strong pitcher. She has a short memory. I went and talked to her after she gave up the home run and just said, ‘Go back and get this one and get us back in there.’ That’s just what she does. She stays with her game and doesn’t worry about the opponents. She focuses on her strengths, what she should do. She was on tonight."


Head Coach Patrick Murphy
Opening statement:
“I thought that it was a very abnormal performance for us. It was one of the first bad games we have played all year. We just picked a bad time to do it. I have no doubt that we will play two games tomorrow and bounce back. You will see a totally different team. It really hinges on one or two plays, whether it is softball, football, or baseball, there are two plays that are probably the key. They got the breaks, and we didn’t. Credit to Stanford. (Teagan) Gerhart pitched well, and they played good defense.”

On Teagan Gerhart’s pitching:
“I think that she throws strikes a lot on the first pitch, so she is ahead immediately. We swung at a couple that were way out of the strike zone, which is not typical of us either. We need to do a better job of picking our pitches. At the end, I think that we got back. Jaz (Lunceford) made a good play, and (Jackie) Traina battled hard. It was just too late.”

On what he said the last couple of innings:
“I told them to battle harder and not to give in. We use a thing called, “pass it down the line.” One gets on, and then they pass it down to the other and then the next person. I thought for sure that in the sixth we were right there. I don’t remember who got out but it kind of deflated everybody, and we didn’t bounce back.”

#00 Kelsi Dunne, RHP
On if she wants to pitch tomorrow:
“If Coach Murphy calls my name, then I will go out there and give it my best. Of course I want to be out there for my team to help them win, but whatever Coach Murphy calls, that’s what it is.”

On what happened at the beginning:
“At the beginning of the game I beat myself. I couldn’t find the umpire’s strike zone. I was throwing balls, walked a couple of the girls, gave up freebees, and they put the ball in play and scored runs. I just wasn’t comfortable in the beginning and then found it the second half of the game, but unfortunately it was too late.”

#20 Whitney Larsen, SS
On the errors being contagious:
“I just think that we made errors in inopportune times. They put pressure on us throughout the entire game. They put the ball in play, and we didn’t make the plays that we needed to at the right times. I give credit to them. I thought that they played very tough today, and they put the ball in play constantly and put pressure on our defense.”

On offensive play:
“(Teagan) Gerhart pitched a great game. She is a great pitcher. I thought she hit her spots really well. She kept us off balance, but at the same time I think we started to make adjustments. At the end, I think we started to put up a very good fight in the last couple of innings. She just did a very good job of keeping us off balance.”