Alabama Postgame Quotes - Game 5

June 6, 2010

ALABAMA COACH MITCH GASPARD
Opening Statement:

“I thought it was big for us to come out and get those four runs in the second inning. It was great to get a lead and hold on. A lot of credit has to go to Mercer. They pitched well and offensively we did not have a lot going for us. I thought when [Tucker] Hawley came in, he was the key. He held the lead and gave us some really good innings until [Jake] Smith came in to close it for us in the end. The big thing today was find a way to win the game and give ourselves a chance for tonight and that was what we were able to do.”

On team’s mentality:
“The one thing I felt about the character of this team is that they would come out and play today and play well. I thought they would put us in a position to play in tonight’s game. I am just awfully proud of this group, not just for today, but for the last three weeks. I think we will come out tonight and we will play really hard and be in this same position.”

On making trip to mound prior to Jacob Tanis’ at-bat in final inning:
“I wanted Jake [Smith] to be aware who he was pitching against. I know we went through it on the scouting report 10 times but I wanted to make sure he knew who was up there. I basically told him that we need to make some quality pitchers. I was O.K. if we walked him there but we got him to pop the ball up and win the game.”

TUCKER HAWLEY, 44, PITCHER
On what he has improved on throughout the season:

“When I was starting off, I was throwing more than pitching. I started to get a feel for the game; it started slowed down and I just started to get in to a rhythm.”

On today’s performance:
“I came out and just tried to execute on the pitchers that were called. I worked down on the knees and tried to work ahead of the count as best as possible.”

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