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June 4, 2023

Jay Uhlman

Simon Baumgardt

Gavin Schulz

Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA

Tulane Green Wave

Postgame Press Conference

Sam Houston - 10, Tulane - 2

COACH UHLMAN: It was apropos that we had another weather delay to finish our season because we've had just about every single thing known to mankind and not known to mankind show up this year with this group and this season. So we believe and we got off the bus thinking, okay, this is a good omen and let's take this.

So there was never any doubt that we were going to come back from that. It was a good fight by the guys to this get to this point.

I tip my hat to Sam Houston and Coach Sirianni for their resolve and toughness and wish them the best moving forward. Just a good, gritty club that I have a lot of respect for.

Q. Simon, you had 20 hours to think about what was going to happen, just what did you do in that process and how did you feel going up to the plate in what was a pretty big situation?

SIMON BAUMGARDT: I felt good. I thought obviously it's a big situation, but I took that as an opportunity to make a good plan and feel really good about it going into it. It's probably one of the biggest at-bats I've had. I wish it would have gone a little different. Used it as an opportunity to get ready for it.

Q. What was it like waiting and waiting yesterday to find out whether the game was going to be resumed? How did you handle that long delay and coming back today to finish it off?

GAVIN SCHULZ: I mean, that was a long rain delay, just for it to get canceled. But me and Simon, we sat in the dugout. We kept reminding each to stay locked in, we've got a game to win. Just staying focused. That's a sign of mental toughness. Staying mentally tough, staying focused. Let everybody else goof off, but we've got a game to win.

SIMON BAUMGARDT: The same thing with me. We thought we were playing at 5:55. So, we were ready for that. They pushed it back. We knew that there was any moment we could play. We thought there was a chance we were playing at 3:00 a.m. We were trying to be ready for that just in case.

And just using an opportunity, if they took that as a chance to relax or something, that was a chance we could get back in the game and try to compete.

Q. What can you say about the run you've had from the AAC tournament to now?

GAVIN SCHULZ: I think this team learned a lot about adversity and failure and how to rebound from that and not give up. We captured the first conference tournament title in school history. So that just shows you a sign of how we didn't give up on each other.

We knew we had the talent. Things weren't going our way all season. But that's no reason to give up and just fold over and just give up.

But I think that was just a sign of us showing up every day with a good attitude, putting the past behind us and getting this thing where we wanted to go. And we captured one of our goals of making a Regional.

SIMON BAUMGARDT: Going along with that, obviously the learning was a huge aspect. I think all of us learned more than we wanted to this year just because of how things went. But that run towards the end, I think it was super fun for all of us. It was kind of a good experience for all of us.

And it gives the young guys here an experience to be in a Regional that is going to be very beneficial going forward.

Q. Just talk about the senior class. You guys have more baseball left to play, but for those guys, this is their last games. Wondering if any words were exchanged and what you can say about any of those guys?

SIMON BAUMGARDT: That's always hard to see. I think we're just super grateful for everything they've done. And they've always been supportive of everybody. They've been real great seniors. And seeing them play their last game is hard. But I think they're appreciative of everything we've done, everything they've done. And I don't think anyone really has any regrets.

GAVIN SCHULZ: Piggybacking off what Simon said, we have a great group of seniors who show up every day leading by example the way they attack school, attack practice, staying on the younger guys -- me as a younger guy, the freshmen, just trying to show them the ropes.

So seeing that was definitely tough. But I think we handled that the right way.

Q. I know you guys still have some baseball left. What can you build on from this year into next year?

SIMON BAUMGARDT: I think everyone saw it. This is a young, talented team that can compete with anybody in the country. So I think just that confidence building into next year and now having that experience of being in a Regional.

LSU is one of the best atmospheres of college baseball. If we can play here we can play anywhere. I think that confidence is going to be huge.

GAVIN SCHULZ: Just experiencing that at a young age is huge. And we know we have the talent. The sophomore class we have is very talented. And showing these freshmen how things are done is going to be huge.

Just experience in a Regional at a young age, experiencing it for the future, knowing how to handle it and what to expect now.

Q. 12 hits, two runs, does that pretty much tell the story of what happened?

COACH UHLMAN: Not really. We had, the first three innings we had the lead-off hitter on the first three innings. Couldn't manufacture anything in the first. In the second we tried to get aggressive. They guessed right, picked us off.

In the third, we didn't have anything going either.

And the sixth inning we were down 6-1. That's the one -- the first two for me, they're baseball plays. You get thrown out in the third trying to get to third -- on the fly ball being the first out -- you're trying to get to third get in position to be aggressive; it's early in the game. And their right fielder makes a heck of a throw and throws out one of our runners.

Those two things didn't bother me. The one in the sixth was hard for me to get over because the ball bounced in front of Teo. Marget hit it in the four hole, in the seam, and Teo had to hesitate and let the ball get through. He's really fast.

Their right fielder had to ranged over toward the line. So I started him out -- and as I started to work back down the line, as I always do, because it's just a rotational thing, I didn't use my voice, I used my one hand and got blocked off by the third baseman.

There was confusion created which was my fault. That one, down five, stung too, especially coming off the heels of us having the other lead-off guys on.

But in typical fashion the guys kept plugging away. And if couple things go our way, if Teo hits a ball to center, the center fielder misplays it and it goes two feet from him instead of all the way to the wall. I think Gavin, he may have hit, I don't remember who hit it, because that was, like, 24 hours ago, but the third baseman dives and it doesn't get far enough away so I can't score them.

Again, you need luck. You need breaks. You need bounces. And unfortunately for us in those spots we didn't get those breaks and they did.

And so 12 hits, yep. But you gotta, again, give them credit for being able to stem the tide and make pitches and get outside when they needed to.

Q. How hard was it to deal with the rain delay? Like you said you dealt with a lot this year, but it looked like you were going to play again, had the bases loaded and had to wait 20 hours, just about.

COACH UHLMAN: It is what it is. They had to wait too. And their pitcher had to sleep on it. And their staff had to sleep on it. And their student-athletes did, too.

We all had equal opportunity to sleep on it. And if we're going to have a big spot in that moment, having a guy like Simon up there that's been around longer than anybody else, I went to bed feeling good about that.

Q. What was your message, I guess, again, like you said, nothing you can really prepare for waiting 18-plus hours, especially when you had some momentum and had runners on base, what can a coach or your coaching staff say to the guys that were coming up, the pitchers that might be coming up, et cetera, et cetera, over the past 18 hours?

COACH UHLMAN: It's like being a parent. If you haven't parented the guys by the time they're 18 you're out of luck. So just trying to keep them in a path moving forward.

We had seven outs to work with. They had nine. And my encouragement to them was -- the way we practice at times during scrimmages, we try to put them in those positions to be able to condense a game down and really focus on playing one inning at a time. I just encouraged them to do that.

But again, that's why it's a great game. They play the game. So I can say everything I want, but at the end of the day that motivation comes from within.

And they had it. They have the will to win. They've had it all year. As they continue to get punched in the face and dirt thrown on their graves, they've just continued to keep that last bit of air left in their lungs. I'm proud of their resilience.

Q. What did the run to the tournament kind of mean, and how do you think you can build on that going forward?

COACH UHLMAN: I think really the thing to me is the building block for the future. I think it sends a signal to recruits, our current players, that when we are talking about being tough and we are talking about staying in the fight, those things actually really carry meaning and weight because we did it.

It's not just words; it's not hyperbole. It's real stuff because we actually did it. To be able to win the first conference tournament championship since '05 is an honor because the '05 team and the tradition we have is real. And there are a lot of proud people that have played and gone to Tulane.

We're very proud of that and very well aware of that. For us to be able to -- again, in baseball you always talk about the next pitch getting up, responding, and do you want the fourth at-bat after you're 0-for-3 with three punch-outs, or do you want that moment on the mound when the bases are loaded, it's 3-2, two outs.

Those are things that are real to this group they'll be able to carry moving forward to their training, their summer ball and into their training in the fall where their words will carry more weight because they actually did it.

So I think like they alluded to, I think it's a huge building block for us even though, you throw the record out of the window. There was still achievement when it mattered the most. And we did that in spite of a lot of odds.

We lost two-thirds of our weekend rotation. We lost our closer, our center fielder and our catcher. For us to be sitting here at this podium, losing, again, two-thirds of our starting rotation, our closer, our center fielder and our catcher, I think it speaks volumes to these guys' resiliency.

Q. What was your message to the team following this game?

COACH UHLMAN: I told them I'll save some of that until we get back. We had to get the dugout cleaned up, leave it better than we found it. They had to get through some of the emotions, hugging each other, stuff like that.

I thanked them. I tried to give them a little bit of what we were trying to accomplish by getting out of here today and that we'd meet later to just kind of go over some of the things of the season. So nothing real poignant.

Q. As you said, more time to reflect as far as message goes. But same question as for the players: Talk about your senior class and their leadership throughout an up-and-down season but one that ended with a conference championship.

COACH UHLMAN: I appreciate that. I think anytime you have the results that we've had and the way we've continued to stay the course, I think that says a lot about a lot of people. And it says a lot about our staff. Not only our immediate staff but our auxiliary staff, too.

I felt the messaging was consistent. I felt like the motivation was consistent. The care level was consistent. And so when you have those things, you put yourself, I think, in a better position than most.

And then when you have the guys in the locker room that have been through it and that are old and that care and try to do their very best to keep guys down the path, I think, I'm just really appreciative of their efforts. And for a lot of things: 3.2 team GPA. Once again, it's like our 16th straight semester with a team GPA of 3.0 or better. A lot of people in the building that have helped move this group in the right direction.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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