June 5, 2011
STETSON HEAD COACH PETE DUNN
I’m really proud of our kids and the way they came back after that loss last night. We battled and patched it together with some pitching today. Robby Powell has only had two starts on the year. We’ve done that a little bit since (Kurt) Schluter went down (for the year). We’ve had to do that. We needed five innings, and he was one out short of that. But we’re really proud of the start he gave us. Then (Tucker) Donahue and (Jake) Boyd came in. Our bullpen has been pretty decent this year. We beat a pretty good club out there. I’m proud of them. We’ll go cool down and change uniforms and come back to match up against South Carolina again tonight.
On their defense today…
Great defensive plays to get you out of an inning are what really picks you up. The double play (in the sixth inning) was huge and the diving play (Mark) Jones made (in the seventh inning). That probably was the turning point of the game. Jones made a great play. Even though we had the lead, if that ball goes through it may turn the whole momentum. That was a momentum killer for them. We made some great plays today to get up out of innings and they were huge pick-me-ups for us.
On hit with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth…
He (Danny Canela) hit it pretty good. There’s a lot of room out there in centerfield. Usually when a ball goes up I’ll watch it for a second, then I’ll focus on the outfielder. As soon as I looked at Spencer (Theisen), I could tell he was gliding a little bit. I felt the ball was going to stay in the yard. When it went off the bat, it was rough. When you get to be my age you don’t need a lot of things like that to get the heart rate going; that’s dangerous.
On pitching for tonight…
Austin Perez will go tonight. He’s our freshman left-hander. He’s done a good job for us all year. We’ve used him out of the pen; we’ve spot started him. He’s done a nice job. It’ll be a big challenge for him. He’s got a lot of guts. It won’t bother him. I really don’t think it will bother him, but I didn’t think we’d have jitters the opening game and we kicked the ball all over the place. I think AP will go out there and pitch. He won’t be unnerved. I can’t tell you that he’ll get the job done or that he’ll beat South Carolina or shut them out, but he’ll go out there and compete.
NC STATE HEAD COACH ELLIOTT AVENT
I would like to say thanks to the University of South Carolina, I thought they ran an absolutely fabulous tournament. It was great to be here. I’m very, very disappointed that we aren’t playing. I am disappointed we don’t get to play South Carolina. I want to get our guys in front of all of those fans, we don’t get to play often in an environment like that. I wanted to get that for them, they deserved it after the way they played. They played with a lot of heart and as Danny (Canela) said, a lot of toughness. I really felt good about today’s game, I was looking forward to tonight’s game and didn’t know if we were going to have enough for tomorrow, but I wanted to be there to see what happened. You have to give credit to Stetson. They beat us twice, so obviously they are a better ball club. (Tucker) Donahue and (Jake) Boyd both pitched well, the starter (Robbie) Powell he got us out. It is really ironic, I think we walked like six guys and we made three errors. We haven’t made three errors in six months and we made them in the same inning. It took three errors to score a run and that wound up being a big run and we gave a charge in a ninth. When Danny (Canela) hit that ball, even though I know it can’t go out in the centerfield here although Harold (Riggins) got one out, I though that ball was gone. It would have been a great finish. I’m proud of our ball club, I’m happy to be here, I am proud to represent NC State University, and I wish we weren’t going home.
On today’s game…
I told them about the fifth inning, as hard as we battled against Georgia Southern’s guy yesterday, I mean he is tremendous. That guy threw like 234 pitches to get them here in the tournament. That guy is just tremendous, he is a great competitor. We really made him work hard I just didn’t think we made them work very hard today. I think we swung at some pitches outside of the zone, maybe swung to early in counts, we didn’t make them work hard enough. I think that was the story of that first five innings. While that was going on we are walking five people and throwing the ball right at the plate and dropping it at the wall and a ball popping out and just everything that could have gone wrong. You’re lucky your’re still in the ball game when Brett (Williams) hits the homerun even though you’re down 3-2. I just felt like we were going to win for sure. I just kept waiting for us to explode and the explosion never happened.
CATCHER DANNY CANELA
On his last at bat…
I hit it as hard as I could with the confidence I have been having this weekend, by far one of the best weekends I have had at NC State, it’s probably the hardest ball I have hit, other than the one I hit Friday, but it was one of the hardest balls I have hit all year.
CENTERFIELDER BRETT WILLIAMS
On today’s game…
Things didn’t quite unfold exactly how we wanted them, but we knew we were still in it. From the beginning we have had a couple of good comebacks, we knew we needed to get people on base and we did that and had a chance to tie it, Danny (Canela) came pretty close there.