Atlanta Super Regional Practice Day Quotes

May 22, 2009

Georgia Tech
Head Coach Sharon Perkins

Opening Statement:
“I am just excited that this time of the year is finally here. This is the most fun time of the season. We definitely worked hard to get to this point and we are excited to be playing at home.”

On having the home-field advantage in the series:
“I think we play well at home. We know our field well and our fans seem to get us excited. We know our park; we know where the ball flies out too. We are just comfortable with how the field plays. We get really excited and pumped up to play at home so we are glad we are here.”

On production from the bottom of the order:
“They seem to keep finding a way to get on. That is our philosophy. One through nine, if we can get that lead-off hitter on and execute to move the runner over, then we can put the ball in play and find a way to score. They have been doing a good job, Christy Jones has been a pretty tough out, whether it is bunting or slapping, she has found a whole and shooting it through somewhere.”

On the impact of losing Kelsi Weseman this late in the season:
“I think so. We have worked a lot on defense as well as offense. It is just part of the game. Everyone is dealing with injuries. It does not matter what time of the year, you are going to have to deal with something crucial like this. It was definitely something crucial at first. It was a bummer for her (Weseman), she was at the top of her game. The team has handled it well. Christy (Jones) came in as an infielder and for her to come in and play second base in college, big deal. She had played second base before she got here. The team has handled it really well. (Jen) Yee playing shortstop, it doesn’t really matter, it is still coming to get the ball, reading the angles and that type of thing. We have had some great communication and they are playing well together now.”

#10 Jen Yee, SS/2B
On Washington pitcher Danielle Lawrie tweaking her style on the mound:
“I haven’t seen her pitch since last summer. I am sure she has tweaked a few things since playing on the Canadian national team. I am just excited to see her tomorrow.”

On Danielle Lawrie’s style of pitching:
“She will try and blow it by you. I have played against her my whole life; we played on rival travel teams. It was always like wow, Danielle Lawrie is pitching but I think we are great hitting team and I think we can hit her.”

On the long week in between the Regional and Super Regional:
“I can’t wait for tomorrow. Just to think we have two more wins to go to a World Series is very exciting.”

#11 Whitney Haller, 1B
On team’s success over the last few weeks:
“It has definitely been a Cinderella postseason for us. We have played some tough teams and have done a really good job. If someone is not having a good day then someone else steps up and gets that big hit. It has been fun.”

On playing at home as career is coming to an end:
“Going into postseason after the ACC Tournament, we thought we would have been sent to Athens but to be able to host the Regional and Super Regional is something we could never have dreamed about here. It is really awesome for me to play at home over the last few weeks of my career at Tech. We have had some football players come out and paint up to get the crowd excited. It has been a lot of fun and we have had an advantage that we would not have had if we played anywhere else.”

On playing on national television for the first time:
“We are very excited. We have been joking around all week that we are playing on ESPN and not ESPN2 or ESPN360.com. We are really excited about it.”

On advantage of going into series as the underdog:
“I feel like we have the dark horse factor. We are not a well-know postseason team. Team’s like Washington and the other PAC-10 teams have the big-name players that everyone knows. We have a lot of very good players that may not be well known. I feel like we have that advantage of sneaking up and biting somebody.”

On leaving Tech knowing she has left a legacy:
“I am really excited about it. It was my goal at the beginning of the season to be part of a team that would start a legacy here at Tech. I think we have done a very good job of doing that and laying down the grounds for future recruiting classes to come in and continue the legacy.”

Washington
Head Coach Heather Tarr

Opening Remarks:

“We’re happy to be out here in Atlanta, representing the Pac-10 Conference and we are excited to play. We feel like we have been waiting all week since our epic overnight game against UMass on Sunday and we are ready to go.”

On what is like to have been on the road so long:

“I’m sure it is different for the student-athletes than it is for the coaching staff. When you are away from home you start to get acclimated to where you are at and start living where you are at and I think we’ve done a pretty good job as a team staying out of each others way and going to class every morning and going where ever the hotel lets us go to take classes and get our homework done. We have been getting our practice work in and getting in the weight room that we have at whatever hotel we are in, so I think we are now officially on east coast time.”

On the team’s strategy:

“Offensively we try to score ask quickly and as often as possible and we don’t really change our approach, regardless of who’s pitching. Danielle has pitched a majority of our games. We have our plan, process and philosophy and we just stick to it.”

Senior Infielder Ashley Charters

What it’s like being away from home for so long:

“For me it’s like I’m living the life, because I actually graduated during the winter quarter so I have just been playing softball which is the dream for every student-athlete.

On the 15-inning game vs. UMass last Sunday:

“It was an emotional game and it was tough. I can only imagine for Danielle [Lawry] to pitch 15 innings plus another seven before that. We just had to stick with the process inning by inning and just keep on going as much as we could but it was definitely an emotional day.”

Junior pitcher Danielle Lawry

What it’s like being away from home for so long:

“I don’t find it that difficult either. There are times when you are on the road and you can dedicate more time to school than you would when you are at home. At home you have a lot of distractions such as wanting to go see some friends. On the road you focus with the whole team and you have a goal to stick together. When you are all at the same spot there is no messing around. You know people aren’t going out, you know they are all going to bed at a decent time and when you have class you have class. Everyone is doing it together so I think we are all doing the same thing.”

On what it will be like to face Georgia Tech’s Jen Yee:

“I think it is just like facing any other player. The more you over analyze a hitter and look way too far into it and think “oh she is really good and I am going to have to walk her” the more you psych yourself out as a pitcher. Alicia [Blake] has been calling great games for me and we have been playing solid defense. I have to hit a spot and get her to put it where I want it to go and the defense is going make great plays, and I’m hoping she [Jen Yee] is going to get herself out. She is a great hitter so I am just going to work on hitting my spots against her.”

On if Jen Yee has an edge on knowing about her from being Olympics teammates:

“No. I think I am a different pitcher than I was when I pitched in the Olympics last summer, a whole different pitcher. I am a lot stronger mentally than I was and I have a lot better control over my pitchers than I think I have ever had so I feel like its two against one whenever someone steps into the box, all the time. There is never a time where I am like “uhh this person stepping in is…” It’s like okay you’re done and that’s pretty much our attitude. I am not scared of anyone.”

On the 15-inning game vs. UMass last Sunday:

“It was definitely a day where I was physically and emotionally worn out, and I can honestly say that our team spent 100-percent of what we had. That to me was the most amazing part because you could tell, when I walked back after a pitch to the circle, that everyone was so into it and I have never ever felt that feeling that everyone was so in-step with me every single time. I don’t really hear people that much when I’m out there, but I could hear the dugout when I watched the video and those people just worked so hard and everyone was so into it. I was emotionally spent afterwards and I think we all gave every single cell of what we had and we can never cut ourselves short now. We know what it takes to get everything out of us and that’s what I expect and what coach Tarr is going to expect out of everyone from now on.”

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