UNC-USC Game 1: Postgame Quotes w/Audio

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- North Carolina and South Carolina coaches and players spoke to reporters immediately following the Tar Heels' 9-6 win over the Gamecocks on Friday at Boshamer Stadium. Read and listen to what they had to say...

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Part I (7:11)
Part II (6:58)


Came from behind again didn't we? Nine runs with two outs- you don't see that happen very often. We're thrilled to have won and withstood a couple of big home runs from them. My kids have a lot of heart. They opened the door for us there a little bit. We had some guys step up and just have some great at-bats for us in a couple of innings. Terrific win for us, we're happy to have gotten off to a good start.


On his at-bats -

I think my second at-bat, I was pretty disappointed in myself. Not driving runs in with second and third and one out. The next at-bats, I just try to go in there relaxed and just see the ball and hit it.

On what's going through his mind when the team is down 6-0 -

You just have to put that thing away. I concentrate on defense a lot and it gets to me a little bit, but the faster you shake it off, the better. We just came in the bottom of that inning and put some runs on the board, so it gave us some confidence back.


On stretching his hit to right center field into a double in the bottom of the sixth -

I probably shouldn't have run, but if he hit the cut, I probably would have been hosed. Maybe try to spark the team a little bit, but definitely in later innings, we kind of change our approach and everybody was able to make a few adjustments. It helped out in the long run.

On getting over a 6-0 deficit -

Down six runs at home, as excited and pumped up as we were, they just came out swinging. They did a great job, I give a lot of credit to them- those first couple of innings jumping on top. We just had to change our approach and make the adjustments we needed to make and have a couple breaks here and there.


On giving up two runs in the first -

It definitely was not the plan. The plan was to come out and attack the zone, which I did. They just happened to attack the ball a little harder. I've never been so close to getting hit in the face with a ball, so that was kind of a wake-up call. They're a great hitting team as advertised. I had so much faith in our guys that we were going to score runs tonight. The name of college baseball if you're a pitcher is give your team a chance to win.




Opening remarks –

I thought Harris did a great job battling for us early and the pitch-hit grand slam was huge. It got us out to a pretty good lead, but there was never any doubt in my mind that the Tar Heels would come roaring back. Secondly, I am a little disappointed in our bullpen tonight. We failed to make some plays defensively and when you combine that with an outstanding hitting team like them, you will find yourself in some trouble. They did a super job rallying and getting runners in scoring position and coming up with some two-strike hits. You have to give them credit, they did a great job to come back.

On South Carolina fans -

I was delighted to see and hear our people early on get into it. They outnumbered us, but we have some great fans who tried to even it up a bit. It was a great battle with two really good teams and we didn't play our best. North Carolina has a great club and I think they struck out maybe one time tonight. They came up with some two strike hits. You have to be at your best when you play a team like this. That's the way the game is and it will humble you. We were up six to nothing and lost. It's disappointing we lost, but give the Tar Heels credit and we'll try to get even tomorrow.

On giving up all nine runs with two outs -

We knew that they were a great team, they pitched and they played defense. They come from behind and have done it before. They put themselves in position to come from behind and they did. Credit them for coming up with a big hit when they needed to.

On tomorrow's starter Arik Hempy -

He's a big game pitcher and right now he's in the right spot. They have an excellent team and you can't say it enough. Hempy has to be really sharp tomorrow night and we feel confident with him tomorrow.


On the wild 7th inning -

I didn't make two plays that I always make tonight and it was just bad. I put the four runs on me tonight and I thought we pitched and hit well. I just didn't make two plays tonight. That's what it comes down to. Now it's time to focus on the next one.

On being an experienced team in post-season play -

Experience is always big and we have a lot of guys back from last year, who know what it's all about. It is never over until it's over and in the super regionals everyone is two games away from Omaha. What it comes down to, is who wants it the most and we'll find out after this weekend. On a poor defensive showing -

There is really nothing else I can say and it's my fault. I didn't make two plays, but I'm going to forget it and come back tomorrow ready to play.


On pitching performance -

I was excited to be pitching and I certainly had a lot of friends and family here. I can't really say anything bad about my bullpen or defense. They have been there behind me all year and now is not the time to get down on anybody.


On his grand slam -

It was awesome and it was a great feeling knowing we were up 6-0. We knew they were a come back team and we just didn't put it together.

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