No. 15 Georgia Tech Ready for Texas in NCAA Gainesville Regional

May 17, 2007

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The 15th-ranked Georgia Tech softball team (53-14) will take on No. 18 Texas (33-18) on Friday at 3:30 p.m., in the first game of the NCAA Gainesville Regional. The winner of the second-seeded Yellow Jackets and third-seeded Longhorns will face the winner of No. 13 overall seed Florida (46-20) and No. 4 seed Stetson (44-20) on Saturday at 1 p.m.

Head Coach Sharon Perkins
What are the strengths of the University of Texas?
“They have really strong pitching. Meagan Denny throws hard and her out pitch is her screwball. She has one of the better ones in the game. We’re going to have to have good pitch selection in order to be successful against her tomorrow.”

What does Tech have to do to win this game?
“We have to keep their leadoff batter (Shannon Thomas) off base. They like to steal so we have to be ready for that on defense. We definitely have to continue to play great defense, which we really have done down the stretch. If we play good defense, and have good at-bats, we have a good chance tomorrow.”

Senior outfielder Caitlin Lever
What is your outlook on this regional?
“We have as a good as chance as anyone to come out of this regional. When you look at this regional, there is no one dominant team. Anybody can win this regional, and I like that. We played Florida earlier this year, and I think they caught us at a time where our bats were not as hot as they have been lately. We had a tough time in the ACC Championship Game, against an incredible pitcher, but I think we have done a great job, offensively, over the last 20 games (19-1). I’m excited to go out there against a good Texas team tomorrow.”

What do you remember about Texas last year?
“Well, they beat us! They lost probably the best pitcher in the United States in Cat Osterman, and still have another good pitcher in (Meagan) Denny. We did a nice job moving her last year and if we are patient, I believe we can be successful. But when you get into regional play, you have to do everything well to win the game.”

Junior pitcher Whitney Humphreys
On not being able to pitch against Texas last year due to an injury?
“It was tough to not be able to play last season when we traveled to Austin. I’m excited about being in regionals again this year and the opportunity to face Texas. When you look at the polls, they have been in the top 10 over the last few years, and you always want to beat the best. I’m excited about the prospect of facing Texas and possibly throwing against them. It’s always tough when you are sitting on the bench helpless and watching your team lose, so I hope that I get a chance to help the team win.”

What about the team this year and where it ranks against the previous two teams you played regionals with?
“This is the best opportunity we’ve had to win a regional, and advance to our first Super Regional. Our offense is one of the best offenses in the country, and our defense has been stellar. We are rolling right now as a team, and we feel like we can compete with anyone in the country. We also feel like we have something to prove.”

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