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April 15, 2011

Recap | Box Score | Photo Gallery media-icon-photogallery.gif

South Carolina Head Coach Ray Tanner
Opening Statement

It was a great college baseball game tonight. There were two guys on the mound that had some billing coming into it and they didn’t disappoint. Both guys were outstanding and kept their teams on position to win. We came up with a couple of big hits and had a good outing from (Matt) Price out of the bullpen.

On Michael Roth
We’re just at the halfway point of him going out on Fridays. We don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves, but he’s done a great job. He’s accepted his role going in to the year. He’s thriving in it. He’s been really good. I didn’t expect him to be where he is numbers-wise, but it’s been great to watch. Our guys rally around him and they feel good when he’s out there. Certainly facing Sonny Gray tonight we all had our hands full, and he kept us in position to win.

On the atmosphere in Carolina Stadium…
It was great. I’m grateful and our players are for our fans coming out tonight. It was very special. There’s a few places in the SEC where you get 7,000, 8,000, 9,000 fans a night. It was great tonight. Our fans rallied around us and that was great for our players. You can’t ask for a better setting as a player and a coach. I talked to our guys yesterday, Vandy is number one, and we’re in there somewhere too. This is supposed to be fun. Let’s go out and play relaxed and hopefully we’ll play well enough to win. It was a great night for us.

On Michael Roth as a player…
Not only has he done well, but he also makes guys around him better. They watch him and it’s impressive. It comes natural to him. He has fun doing it. He’s in the heat of the battle and you see him in the dugout sometimes and talk to him and you think he’s not even playing. He’s that loose and comfortable. I think in a nutshell for Michael Roth it’s just a game for him. He’s going to go out and have fun. He’ll try to do well, but at the end of the day, it’s just a game for him. He’s not a guy that takes on tension and anxiety. He wants to do well and if it’s not going as well as he wants it, it flushes it and moves on. It’s nice to have him. It’s a great experience for me to watch him in his career. He’s among the very best. I’ve been fortunate to have some good guys over the years. He certainly ranks up there. Michael Roth gets everything out of what he has ability wise. He gives it all and has nothing left. He gives you everything he’s got.

On how the team responds to hype…
That’s one of the things that I always fear as a coach. Baseball is baseball. You have to go play. But how are your guys are handling it, what does it mean to them? If it’s a big game, do they look at it that way? It’s just another game; you don’t want them to be ho-hum. Our guys have good approaches. They don’t get too high, but not too low. They think they’re good enough to win but certainly understand that they can lose. You’ve got to give credit to veteran players for that kind of attitude. They love this. A great crowd at home against the number one team in the country. Let’s do everything we can to win. Let’s go out and have some fun and see if we can win. There’s no anxiety and tension and that’s the way it needs to be.

Michael Roth, Pitcher
On pitching on Friday nights…

It’s a lot of fun. I enjoy pitching on Friday nights and getting the series started. I try not to get into all the hype about the first rounder (Sonny Gray). He’s a great pitcher, but I just try to get out there and do my thing, throw the ball.

On the fans tonight…
The fans did an incredible job tonight. It was almost like we were playing Clemson. I think that’s the most excited I’ve seen them since that series. They did an awesome job.

On his progression as a pitcher…
I wouldn’t say it exceeds my expectations because I always expect to do well no matter what I’m supposed to do. If you had asked me in the fall if I’d still be pitching on Fridays I say I doubt it. If you had asked me a year ago, I’d laugh at you. I just thank the coaches for giving me this opportunity. I couldn’t have done it without the whole team making great plays.

Scott Wingo, Second Base
On playing behind Roth…

I love playing behind Roth. He has great tempo and you know he’s going to fill the zone up. You’re always on your toes and he gets a lot of groundouts.

On getting 11 hits against Vanderbilt ace Sonny Gray…
We just knew he’s a great pitcher. Really, we just tried to go up there and battle. We tried not to get two strikes on us and just wanted to be aggressive. It worked out for us tonight.

Matt Price, Pitcher
On his performance tonight…

I just go out there every time and try to give my best. I had a little bit more adrenaline tonight. I just wanted to go in there and get my job done.