May 19, 2007
2007 NCAA Amherst Regional
May 18-20, 2007
Game 3: No. 1 Oklahoma 2, No. 2 Massachusetts 0
Massachusetts Opening Statement
"I thought that we set a good tone as far as our energy in the first inning. I thought Amanda Morin led us off with a great hit. Unfortunately, it came down to, when we had the opportunity to move some runners, we really did not execute. In a game like this, at a championship of this level, you have got to be able to execute when the time comes. We fell a little bit short today. Oklahoma is a very disciplined team. I thought Brandice pitched a pretty good game against them and I thought we got out of some pretty tight situations defensively."
Stacy Cullington on lessons learned for potential game tomorrow
"Oklahoma hit the ball really hard, and on the ground. We've worked really hard on grounders, so we were chasing them down pretty well today. I think it really came down to the timing of our hitting. We just didn't have it today, but hopefully we see them again. If we see Eckermann tomorrow, we will be more prepared because we have seen her for a whole game. It is always an advantage to have seen a pitcher for a game. You have seen what she has to throw and you know how you've hit against her, and you start to adjust."
Brandice Balschmiter on her overall performance
"Overall, I don't think I did a very good job. I obviously didn't come out in the way that we needed to handle them. They hit very well today. I didn't really hit my spots, and didn't have what we needed to win."
Coach Sortino on approach for playing tomorrow
"We have to be able to hit pitches. The setup is very crucial with teams of this caliber. The other thing is that the plate was very tight today. There wasn't a whole lot of room for negotiation. When you fell behind, you had to bring it. I thought for how strong they hit, and what talented hitters they are, that Brandice pitched well overall. I just think that second run took the wind out of our sails a little bit."
Oklahoma's Opening Statement
"We decided that we needed to come out and approach this game with our style. We came out yesterday a little tight so it was all about bringing back the Oklahoma style. You could feel that from the start. They were very vocal, they were trying to make things happen, they were very aggressive on the base paths. The defense stepped up big time. I thought that a key play was in the second when they got the lead-off on, they laid down a bunt and we got the double play. It was fitting in the end for that to happen as well since the defense is very good. Lauren settled in and did a fantastic job on the mound; you could see her take control that way and of course our number nine batter who everyone wished they could have as their number nine batter stepped up big time for us. It was overall a good team effort, everybody kept working to apply pressure and find ways to get on, if any, the problem we had was leaving too many runners in scoring position, but overall I thought it was a very good day of softball."
Traci Dickenson's thoughts on hitting
"Nothing really goes through my mind; I just kind of go up and hack. See it, hit it."
Coach Gasso's thoughts on getting the insurance run
"I think something that we were talking about is that we definitely needed insurance. We needed to try to take it away from just making one swing and coming back to tie it. I think that's why you saw Jade [Prather] pinch run and come in behind to try and sneak another run in. UMass is a great team; they can make things happen offensively, they have an outstanding pitcher. There is never a time where we felt comfortable."