Game 4: Tennessee 4, UCLA 3 Postgame QuotesMay 31, 2006


" UCLA is making its 22nd trip to the WCWS and is aiming for its 100th national title in school history. The Bruins own an all-time record of 86-26 and have been to the last eight WCWS. In opening-round games UCLA fell to 18-4 (more wins than any other NCAA team). The last time the Bruins lost an opening-round game was in 2003, a 7-3 defeat to California, but UCLA bounced back to beat Cal, 1-0, in the national championship game.

" The Lady Vols are making their second straight appearance in the WCWS and only their fourth overall showing in the NCAA Tournament. The Vols have won their opening game in both of their trips to the WCWS. Tennessee improved to 11-0 in night games and 23-0 in neutral site games.

" The Bruins five-game winning streak against the Vols was snapped tonight but they still lead the all-time series 5-2. Both schools met in last years WCWS with UCLA taking the 3-1 triumph in second-round action. Tennessee improved to 2-7 all-time against No. 1-ranked teams with its two victories over eventual national champion Michigan in the 2005 WCWS and UCLA tonight.

" Tennessee came in as the top fielding team in the country with a .980 fielding percentage, but committed two costly errors against the Bruins. UT has committed two or more errors six times this season with four of those games resulting in losses.

" Tennessee upped its record to 9-8 when the opponent scores first. UCLA, meanwhile, fell to 43-3 when scoring first and 22-2 when leading after the first inning.

" UTs Sarah Feketes single in the top of the seventh set an SEC single-season record (108) for hits and extended her hitting streak to 10 games. The previous SEC mark was 107 hits held by teammate Lindsay Schutzler in 2005.

" Tennessees Kristi Durant pounded the eventual game-winning RBI with a single up the middle in the seventh. Durant owns the SEC career record with 203 RBI. The previous record was 191 held by Kelly Kretschman of Alabama (1998-2001). The senior designated player gave UT is first lead of the game with an RBI single down the right field line in the top of the sixth. She finished with a 2-for-4 outing with two RBI.

" The Lady Vols India Chiles picked up UTs second hit of the game in the sixth and extended her hitting streak to 12 games, a career best.

" UTs Tonya Callahan tied the game at 2-2 in the top of the sixth with a single that scored two runs, one on an error. Ironically, it was Callahans solo homer that scored Tennessees only run last season in UCLAs 3-1 win over the Vols in the WCWS.

" UT pitcher Monica Abbott fanned 11 Bruins, marking the 22nd time this season she has recorded double-digit strikeouts and the 83rd time in her career.

" UTs Shannon Doepking broke up Anjelica Seldens no-hitter with a single up the middle in the top of the fifth. She is 4-for-7 in her last three outings.

" UCLA pitcher Anjelica Selden gave up her second-highest hit total of the season (nine). Her season high was 11 hits surrendered against Washington on April 26, 2006 a 7-6 win for the Bruins.

Drawing from WCWS experience from 2005:
From our past experiences we know we just have to keep fighting. UCLA is a great team and they came in with a great game plan. Things didnt look like they were going to go our way at the beginning of the game, but we told our kids yesterday there has not been a team yet, to come into a World Series and have everything go perfect. You are going to have some ups and downs, but you have to bounce back and keep fighting. I think our kids were very resilient tonight.

On UCLA pitcher Anjelica Selden:
She really had our number early on, but I am really proud of the way our kids hung in there and battled. We werent getting anything done in the short game, but we made a couple of adjustments here and there and our slappers finally put the ball on the ground and things started to go from there.

General comment:
I think that this one (the win) was key. We didnt want to go into the losers bracket. It also gave us a lot of confidence and showed us that we can play with anyone. We were ranked 8th early in the season and we have had our ups and downs and we are looking to keep it going on the upside.

On her pitching performance:
I felt like at times I was throwing really well and at times I was battling myself. All and all I was just trying to stay focused and just take the game one pitch at a time, throwing the best that I could at that moment. I just wanted to leave it all on the field.

Confidence on her offense:
I have a lot of confidence in our offense. They are going to come through time and time again. They are such great athletes and they know how to make things happen. A couple players ding one in here and there and they get a run, but I have all the confidence in the world that we are going to come back. And I think they have all the confidence in me that I will hold that lead for them.

On pitcher Anjelica Selden during Tenneesees three-run rally in the top of the sixth inning:
I was disappointed when they started to mount that comeback that she was not able to catch herself and regroup. I felt like they got the momentum and maintained it. At this level, at this point in the season, youre not going to be perfect, and when youre not perfect youve got to recover right away. I felt like our recovery was inefficient. You can give up a hit, you can even make a bobble, but youve got to come back sharp with your pitches and put them where youd been putting them all ballgame.

On UCLAs failed rally in the bottom of the sixth inning:
The only thing we had talked about toward the end of the game is that we started to go up the ladder with Abbott, and thats dangerous. I thought we did a good job of staying down in the zone and it was a great battle. But when I saw we were going up the ladder, then we were in charge of too big of a strike zone with Abbott. Unfortunately, she got the better part of it.

On what she told her team after the game:
If youre sad, think about the individual things you did wrong because that will make you regroup and focus for the next ballgame. Dont be sad. Were a veteran club and I believe our best softball is in front of us. We have to detach from this, learn from it and move on, because no ones coming to our pity party. So game on, lets just refocus tomorrow and come ready on Saturday.