May 30, 2009
2009 NCAA Baseball Norman Regional
Game 3: Washington State 3, Wichita State 2
WICHITA STATE HEAD COACH GENE STEPHENSON
"We had a great effort today, just like last night for whatever effort counts for. I thought we played hard. It's more of the same. We're just a little short in certain areas. We just don't quite have all that we need to win against great teams. We tried hard and did everything we could do, but we needed a clutch hit. We need guys to come up there in situations, where we do have a few times we haven't been on, and we need to deliver. We don't get that and it's been a tough year for that. I'll say that this has been the toughest year I've ever experienced as a coach, and I mean that. These guys played hard. They were out-manned in a lot of ways, but they kept trying, playing hard and they never gave up. It's just very frustrating for all of us and I think I speak for the whole team when I say I want to thank our fans who followed us through it all. I mean, there were some ugly moments and some tough times, terrible down times, that this program has never faced before. Our fans never quit on us. They kept following, supporting us, and that was a big help to us. It was frustrating for all of us."
On pitcher Jordan Cooper:
"I'd say Jordan Cooper threw a whale of a game, gave up the walk, and it came back to bite him for two home runs. I know he wishes he had those two pitches back, but again, you can't be perfect and we needed to be better offensively. It's been kind of the story of our whole season."
On his team's last game of the season:
"I think that we leave a lot to be desired. There's no question about that. But I think that we did display heart a number of times; it wasn't as consistent as I would like. I will say this, I promise you we will be back next year. That's a promise you can count on."
JUNIOR CATCHER CODY LASSLEY
On mistakes made during the game:
"I was working both sides of the plate and kept them off balance all game, and like Gene said, those were two mistakes that we wish we could have back. But I mean we gave up three hits. We just have to get more runs. It's been like that all year like Gene said, and we just can't find a guy to come up there and get a base hit when we needed to."
On pitcher Jordan Cooper:
"You know exactly what you're going to get when (Jordan) Cooper goes on the mound. He pitched great and there is nothing more he can do. He can only pitch, I mean he can't go up there and hit for us or play defense. He pitched a great game. He pitched his game and there's nothing more we can do."
FRESHMAN RHP JORDAN COOPER
On mistakes of the game:
"Just like Cody said earlier, it's just locating pitches and changing speeds. They were pretty aggressive early on and swinging at a lot of pitches early. We know that we messed it up a little bit and that kind of helped them get themselves out."
JUNIOR OUTFIELDER RYAN JONES
On the season:
"It's been a great ride. It's kind of nice having fans cry because our season is over instead of being happy that the season's over. Just the way that we played midway through the season, we weren't very good. We were very inconsistent at all aspects of the game. I felt like we came up here and fought and that showed. It's kind of what Wichita State's all about. I hope that the younger guys understand that."
WASHINGTON STATE HEAD COACH DONNIE MARBUT
“It was just a good ball game, well played game by both teams. As happy as we’re for us to win the ball game, obviously there were two great starts by two really good arms. So we are fortunate to get the win.”
On the offense:
“Baseball, when you think about it is a crazy game. We had 10 hits yesterday with the loss, and maybe struck out twice yesterday. Today we punched out 10 times and only had three hits, but they come up big. Obviously, there were two big swings by (Derek) Jones and (Jared) Prince that really helped us. You just have to stay with it.”
On starting pitching:
“Starting pitching has been the key for us. We have had great starting pitching all year long and Mattie (Way) gave us a great start yesterday, and today when our backs were up against the wall, Chad (Arnold) just came up big. Chad had a great start last week against Washington that was kind of a clincher game for us, and he came up big there too. That was probably the best start Chad has had in a Cougar uniform.”
On bullpen bouncing back:
“There is reason why we are here and the reason is Jeremy Johnson. He is one of the biggest reason s why we are here and it didn’t work out for him yesterday for numerous reasons. We didn’t make a play behind him, gave up a hard hit and gave up some jam shots. There is a reason why this club his here and we are not going to change what we are doing. It shows what these guys can do. Obviously, they had a rough day yesterday but the came back today and gave us their best stuff.”
FRESHMAN OUTFIELDER DEREK JONES
On home run in the sixth inning:
“I have been struggling and feeling the pressure to perform. I was like, ‘come on, I have to do this’ and I finally got it fixed and put a good swing on it. It changed the course of the ball game. No matter how old you are, you have step up in a big time and fortunately that is what I did.”
On going after Wichita State pitcher Jared Cooper aggressively:
“He was keeping us off balance the whole game and we couldn’t quite figure him out. We were trying to be aggressive towards his fastball and that’s baseball, sometimes it doesn’t work. You just have to be patient and let the ball get to you and put a good swing on it and good things are bound to happen.”
SENIOR PITCHER JARED PRINCE
On home run in the sixth inning:
“Jonesie (Derek Jones) put a great swing on an up-breaking ball and then he went right to a fastball to me. I didn’t miss it. I tip my hat to that pitcher today for Wichita. He did a great job and had us off balance the whole game. He threw a real good game and did a real good job. Chad was doing his thing today too. I tip my hat to both pitchers today.”
SOPHOMOMRE PITCHER CHAD ARNOLD
On pitching performance:
“I definitely try to get better every time I go out there and think that is ever player’s goal as an individual. I pitched well against Washington and I tried to use that momentum into this weekend. I learned a lot from the first one to try not to let the game itself and the pressure of it get to you. I just focused and staying in my routine.”