NCAA Softball Regional: Alabama Press Conference Quotes

May 17, 2012

NCAA Softball Tuscaloosa Regional
Pre-regional Press Conference

Head Coach Patrick Murphy
Opening Statement:
I want to say first, congratulations to Tennessee-Martin, South Alabama and Georgia Tech. We’re all really looking forward to a great regional. I know that they’re going to have great athletes and great coaches. It’s going to be some very good competition with four conference champions in one regional. I think it’s extra special to be the only regional among 16 regionals that can say that. I hope our fans come out and it’s truly a championship atmosphere for all of the kids that are playing in this regional.”

On the scouting report for Tennessee-Martin:
“Their pitcher is very good. She is 28-8. Obviously she’s carrying the load. Their top three-four batters are excellent. Everybody is about .300, or close to it. There’s a lot of speed in the one-two spots. They were the conference tournament winner, and the regular season champions. They’ve carried it through; they were consistent. All of us know that Ohio Valley softball is pretty good. They have Jacksonville State, Tennessee Tech and some other good teams in there. It says a lot about them and their program.”

On the difference in South Alabama:
Their lineup is totally different. I was looking at it from the championship game compared to when we played them the second day of the season. There’s a lot of different positions and kids in the lineup. They’ve steadily gotten better and better. They’ve played some good competition. They were very, very close three times against UL-Lafayette. They were close against a couple of other top 25 teams. They’re probably playing their best right now.”

#1, Kayla Braud, OF
On if they take it for granted that regional will be in Tuscaloosa:   
“Absolutely not. You never take being at home for granted. With the atmosphere that we play in front of, with the best fans in the country—and I firmly believe that we have that—you can’t take that for granted because they have the power to sway the game in our favor. When you have 3,000 people behind you and supporting you, it gives you that motivation and a little bit more drive to play. It doesn’t hurt that you have people that are supporting you and are not against you.”

On if they’ve used losing to Hawaii in the Tuscaloosa Regional as motivation:
The underclassmen watched it on television. They saw it; they understand how it made us feel. I think the most important thing that we take from that is that it’s not easy to get to the World Series. It’s not easy to win a regional, or a super regional. You can’t take those things for granted. You have to play and show up, no matter who the opponent it. It doesn’t matter, because at this point, it’s up for grabs. It’s for whoever wants it the most.” 

#18, Cassie Reilly-Boccia, 1B
On if they take it for granted that regional will be in Tuscaloosa:
 “I agree 100 percent. I think one thing that’s been really special about this team is that we haven’t taken anything for granted, especially after last year when we didn’t even know if we’d be playing at home. It’s incredibly special to be playing in Tuscaloosa. I think I can speak for the senior class when I say that we’re trying to take advantage and really appreciate every game and every inning that we have left at Rhoads Stadium right now.”

On if they’ve used losing to Hawaii in the Tuscaloosa Super Regional as motivation:
The past is the past. Any time that we lost, I think it motivated us for practice. We’ve always said that it was all about us and how we were going to play Alabama softball. We know from experience, from this season alone, that when we don’t play our game, any team is capable of beating us. We have to focus on playing our best at all times, for every pitch in every game.”

On the senior leadership:
I think something that has been really special about our senior class, and even our junior class, is that there wasn’t one person that stood out and said that they were going to be a leader. It was one person being the vocal leader; another person was leading by example. This person could be someone that we needed to hold other people accountable. We fell into very specific leadership roles. I think we’ve made the environment on our team comfortable enough that we have juniors, sophomores and freshmen stepping into leadership roles. We’ve said from day one that if someone on this team is looking to you, you’ve automatically become a leader. It’s just making sure that everyone is doing what they should be doing and that’s been important this year. I think the senior class has just taken advantage of the roles that they’ve been given to the best of their ability.”