May 29, 2009
Head Coach Mik Aoki
Opening statement: Texas State did exactly what we expected them to do. They competed like crazy in the batter's box. They put a ton of balls in play. They didn't strike out much, and they kept the innings going. But I think on the flipside, we did a good job of keeping it within striking distance because they put a lot of pressure on us through those first six or seven innings. We hung around and we strung together in the top of the ninth a bunch of really good at-bats. In hindsight, those two runs we were able to tack on after the home run were really big. I thought J.B. [MacDonald] really pitched well. I thought the bullpen did a good job of minimizing some of the innings and gave us a chance to reenter the game and come back and win.
On putting together a ninth-inning rally: You just try to go up there with a good approach and stay relaxed. I thought we were a little tense early on and we got relaxed later. When we put the first two batters on in the inning, we felt like we were in a pretty good place.
On advancing to the winner's bracket: You win the first game first. We were fortunate to do it. I'll come back here tonight and watch Texas and Army and see how they look. It should be a good game and we'll get more information on both teams. At this point in the season, there is not a threat of a letdown. You're playing for a national championship and this is the first stage of it. I'm hoping that we can carry a little momentum into tomorrow, but at this stage of the game there are no let-down games.
RF/1B John Spatola
On the excitement of hitting a home run:
On his three-run home run in the top of the ninth inning: I wasn't thinking home run when I was up at bat. We started off the inning with three base hits, and with runners on second and third, down by two with no outs, you just want to put the ball in play. If you get a hit, that's even better because you can score both of them. But there was really little I could do that wouldn't be successful, so I was mainly just relaxed.
In the third inning when I got a single, that was the biggest hit of my life because this is a NCAA Regional. Then the home run surpassed that. This is the big stage and this is where you want to be.
3B Mickey Wiswall
On the atmosphere in the dugout: Coach told us going into the sixth inning that we were a little tense being on the big stage of the NCAA Regional. He told us to have fun with the game and let it play itself. After that, we were really loose in the dugout. We had confidence in everyone we had up there, because they had come through all year. The dugout was loose even going into the ninth inning. We strung a couple knocks together and then John's bomb put us over the top and it was a great thing.
Head Coach Ty Harrington
General statement: First of all, the game was what I expected score wise. Obviously when you get that close and you're three outs away from a win, you get to where you anticipate it. But the idea of baseball is there's 27 outs in a game. You have to be able to get the last three outs, just like you have to get the three outs in the fifth. I thought we played well. I thought we battled extremely well. I thought they battled amazingly in the ninth. I've got to tell you, we weren't throwing slop up there. Tyler Brundridge and Michael Russo both have been on the back end of a lot of great baseball games this year for us. Tomorrow, if the opportunity creates itself, they'll find themselves back out there again. I thought Boston College did an amazing job in the ninth controlling the at-bats. Even after they tied it and went ahead, we were trying to minimize as much as we could because we still had the bat in our hands for the bottom of the ninth. You saw the opportunity that created. Any time we can hold it to a tie or a one-run game, we feel like we still have a chance.
On the bullpen troubles in the ninth inning: I'll have to go back and watch the video. They just barreled up a bunch of baseballs in the ninth inning. When you play good baseball and you don't execute certain pitches, they have an opportunity to do that. I thought they did a pretty good job. They didn't take long. The first three guys were the bottom half of their order, mind you, and I thought they did a tremendous job of battling.
On Ben Theriot's long fly ball in the ninth inning: I thought it was off the wall. I grabbed [Derek] Matlock's arm and said it might be off the wall. But it wasn't.
On leaving men on base in the late innings: I don't know our total but I think in the first three innings, we left runners at second base three times. I think it hurt us a little bit, no question. They're pretty good. This is a baseball game that came down to the last swing. Don't forget, we still had an opportunity to win the game in the bottom of the ninth inning after having someone reach in and pull your beating heart out of your chest. Then all of a sudden you look back up and here we go again. Our guys were right back in there. As much as I'm disappointed, what you saw was the character of this team in the bottom of the ninth inning.
P Kane Holbrooks
On whether he was nervous pitching in an NCAA regional: No, not at all. I felt good from the beginning and was just having a good time.
On pitching in the heat today: I felt good. The heat didn't really bother me today.
1B Paul Goldschmidt
On his ninth-inning homer that cut the lead to one run: It was obviously disappointing when we gave up that lead. But like coach said, every hit they had was a shot. I think they had eight hits on eight line drives, and it's not like we were just hanging stuff up there. We wouldn't be here if it wasn't for those two pitchers. We got the momentum when their guy got kind of wild, but it's kind of tough to come back like that. We did a good job. We needed one more run. We just couldn't get it.
On rebounding tomorrow afternoon: It's a disappointing loss and we don't know who we're playing yet. I think we'll have [Brian] Borski throwing tomorrow. If we can find a way to win that game, we played four games in the conference tournament, so we've got our pitchers lined up. We didn't have to use too many guys today. The strength of our team has been hitting, so you never know. If we can get hot, something crazy can happen.