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April 28, 2012

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Head Coach Ray Tanner
On biggest difference between beginning of year and now…
“I think that the thing we have talked about before is consistency on the mound. Those guys down there, our starters and our bullpen and the job Coach Meyers has done on that staff, has been really impressive. They put us in a position to win a lot of games. We lost some close game because we just weren’t able to score enough runs. Lately we have been able to score enough runs to support our pitching staff. Today they got one run. Patrick scuffled a little bit, but he was able to pitch his way out of it. We just played a lot better. We are playing a little more confident and our freshmen have gotten some innings and games under their belt. I think they are more relaxed. All those things I believe have contributed to being a little more consistent.”

On Christian Walker and Colby Holmes
“The short answer is I don’t have any answers. Christian Walker just pulled his hamstring a little bit stretching for that throw Joey Pankake made in the six hole. He kept stretching out but it’s going to be a day-to-day thing and we will just have to see where we are. Colby Holmes feels much better, but its still only been a few day so we will have to evaluate him has we go.”

LB Dantzler
On feeling good as a team playing well at the right time…
“It feels really good. At the beginning of the year it wasn’t really happening at all for the hitter at least, the pitchers have been doing well all year. We knew we could do it. With a lot of new guys we had to get some innings in and now that everyone had been here and played over half the season it’s kind of starting to come together.”

On his biggest adjustment…
“I would say it has definitely been more mental or at least it was at the beginning of the year. It’s tough when you are hitting the ball hard but not getting very many hits and you see your average is down. It’s mainly staying positive and knowing that it is going to turn around. It took a lot longer than I would have hoped but now I’m getting a few hits and starting to feel better. Hopefully I can keep it going.”

Nolan Belcher
On the mood in the locker room…
“When you are winning people are happy and when you’re losing people aren’t happy. I think early on we had a bunch of young guys and they were kind of trying to find themselves, but like coach has said before they aren’t really young guys anymore. They have played a lot this season and I think they are coming into their own. They aren’t playing tentative anymore.”

On unexpected good performances…
“We knew we had players coming into the year that would be big for us. We knew we needed guys to step up. LB Dantzler kind of struggled early in the year but he is starting to hit the ball hard like he did in the fall and in the preseason. Patrick Sullivan did a great job again stepping in for Colby Holmes. I just can’t say enough about that.”

Christian Walker
On strained hamstring…
“I hurt it on the stretch on that 6-3 play. I felt like I strained it a little bit. I don’t really know too much more than that. It feels better now than it did at the time but hopefully it’s not a big deal.”

On hitting a stride as a team…
“We are playing well. We feel good, and we are playing loose. We are having fun. That’s another thing the coaches have been stressing is just to have a good time. We’ve been playing this game our whole lives and we are here for a reason. There’s no point in being stressed out and playing up tight. We just need to play loose and let the game come to us. It’s a good feeling.”