home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


June 20, 2011

Ben Bunting

Kent Emanuel

Mike Fox

Jacob Stallings


North Carolina – 3
University of Texas - 0

THE MODERATOR: Congratulations, Coach. Give us an overview.
COACH FOX: Well, sensational performance is an understatement probably by Kent Emanuel here. What a performance. A complete game shutout which I don't think you see too many of them out here. Somebody just told me the last one was Robert Woodard on our staff in 2006. So I've been privileged to see the last two out here.
Didn't really surprise us maybe that Kent went all nine innings. But he's been on the big stage for us. Down the stretch he's really been throwing well for us. We thought it was going to be a game just like it was. That's typical of a lot of games we've won this year. Not so much complete game shutouts, but just trying to scratch and claw and get a runner or two here and there and trying to hold the other team down and make some good defense and make plays.
So big win for us. We're excited just to get a win out here and extend our stay a little longer.

Q. Jake, from your perspective, what did you see in Kent today? What made him so successful?
JACOB STALLINGS: I thought his curveball and changeup command were what set this performance apart from maybe the rest of them. Usually just absolutely commands his fastball and throws it wherever he wants to.
It seems like they were on his fastball a little bit, especially with two strikes, so we started going to more breaking balls and off-speed pitches, and I think that really had them off balance.

Q. Kent, I think you had seven infield pop-ups and good fastball velocity. Where did the pop-ups come from? Was that from getting inside, getting guys off balance? How do you think you got some of those weak contacts like that?
KENT EMANUEL: It's definitely from my changeup today. I threw inside less today than I ever have all year. So today is definitely the changeup, just getting them out in front.

Q. Kent, can you talk about how much of a lift you got when you got out of those two innings with double-plays?
KENT EMANUEL: Any time we can end the inning on double-play and get two for one is always big. That's just credit to our outfielders today. Those are two uncommon double-plays, and I was fortunate to have two of them today.

Q. Coach, just curious, have you had a chance to check Kent for a pulse? Because it seems like for a freshman going into a situation like this and really settling in early, it seems pretty characteristic for him the whole season.
COACH FOX: Very characteristic. Other than his left arm, that is his best trait is his demeanor. Very first time I met him, just exactly the way he's always been. I've never seen Kent any different. Just you don't see a lot of emotion out of him. That's what you want when you get on the mound especially at this stage.
But he's under control. Said it before many, many times that he's very mature for his age. And he's been able to handle just the rigors of college baseball and coming in the fall. He's worked. He's very, very committed, and he's had some pretty good examples as well to follow. I think he'll be the first one to tell you that Robert Woodard helped him and all our upper-class pitchers have given him some advice. He's taken it to heart. He was pretty good before he got to North Carolina, and we're happy to have him.

Q. Ben, you're 11 for 18 over the last four games. You've been playing well even before that. Can you just kind of talk about what's going right for you right now at the plate?
BEN BUNTING: Right now I'm just very fortunate to be seeing the ball good at the plate. Trying to hit the first strike I see, not trying to get myself into bad counts, and I've been fortunate to put good swings on the ball right now.

Q. Coach and Jacob, can you talk about Jacob's development as a catcher from freshman year until now? How he's gotten better the last couple of years?
COACH FOX: Jake, you can answer that as well as I could.
JACOB STALLINGS: All right. I think it's just with getting older, being a little more mature. Certainly I've gained some weight and gained strength, so that's helped offensively and defensively. It's also helped me be so durable. I've caught a lot of games this year, and I feel like I'm playing my best baseball right now. So just improving my overall strength, I would say is one of the big reasons why.
COACH FOX: I'll agree with all of that. He's worked very, very hard since he got on our campus. He wants to be good. He wanted to be good. Really, really wanted to be good, and it has to start with that. He just has an inner drive. Once he got over the middle part of it, he just really had to work.
He had a big learning curve, and he realized the physical and mental part of it was going to have to come together. He's been able to do that, and it's a great story. It's what coaching is all about watching kids develop and get better as Jacob has and all of our players.

Q. Coach, I saw you have a moment with Roy Williams after the game. Can you share what he said to you after this game?
COACH FOX: Be back Wednesday. Just congratulations. Tell the left-hander that was a pretty awesome performance. Reminded me of Robert Woodard, and great job, and I'll be back Wednesday. He's a great supporter of our program.

Q. Early on it kind of looked like Saturday all over again with some scoring opportunities. Maybe you guys didn't catch on. You had the call at first base. How did the mindset of the team change after you broke through and got those two runs?
COACH FOX: You just have to keep taking deep breaths in there. It was really important. I was trying to count to ten myself coming in, because it's easy to get frustrated as it goes on. Like, man, another opportunity, more base runners on. It did look like we were just kind of a mirror and just attacking on from what we did Saturday and you know they almost got at it again, and Jacob got enough of that ball to drop it in there and the big two-strike hit for us. That kind of let the air out of our dugout a little bit and get a two-run lead. We knew the way Kent was throwing it, it might have been enough, but we needed to attack a little bit.
So that hit was huge for us.
JACOB STALLINGS: Certainly we were frustrated with the way we hit. Early in the game we left some guys out there good again, so certainly we were frustrated. Any other day, I think he hits a home run, and Levi also hits a home run. Those balls were both crushed and the wind was just blowing in.
So that's probably why my ball followed because the wind was blowing in. He put some good swings on balls and luckily we found the hole.

Q. Could you talk about Ben's double in the ninth and the deflating affect it would have on a team and also the hitting over the course of the game?
COACH FOX: Yeah, that was huge. That was a huge swing of the bat. They were playing in a little bit there with two strikes. There is a big difference. Obviously being 2-0 or 3-0. You just get one guy on in a 2-nothing deficit, and you can get right back in the game, so that was a big swing of the bat. A good bunt by Seth to get Jeff out at second. And another two out, two strike hit which I think you have to have just to stay alive out here.
You know, Ben's really been playing well down the stretch for us. Glad I hit him in the two hole today. I flipped a coin, and Ben hit second.

Q. A lot of times you see guys who don't have a pitcher go to a complete game just to get a pitcher on that mound. Do you have any thoughts in the ninth just to get them on the mound or change your thinking as far as having Kent go back out for the ninth?
COACH FOX: No, because Coach Forbes said as soon as he walked off in the 8th inning that he's going back out there in the ninth. And I'm scared of Coach Forbes, so I told him okay. That was pretty much it. I let him make almost all of the decisions. We've seen Kent do that before, so I mean, he's thrown complete games before. We can tell when he's feeling it and he's throwing a lot of strikes. We wanted him to go back out there.
That is a thought to get some other guys on the mound in the College World Series because they're probably going to be out there again at some point. But right now you've got to go with the guy that got you to that point in the game. Kent would have probably tried to strangle me anyway if I tried to take him out. But I think he deserved to finish that game.

Q. Coach, you mentioned yesterday at practice how important it was for Kent to be able to go deep into the game, to kind of help his bullpen. How critical is that for him to go nine innings and really rest?
COACH FOX: We want him to go deep. If he's going deep, he's probably pitching well for us and we're probably in the game. We had some other guys that we would have thrown today. It's an elimination game so you have to have everybody ready. We didn't tax too many people on Saturday. That was probably more wishful thinking on my part. I wanted him to pitch deep into the game. Now that he has, that's good. We've got plenty of fresh arms and we're going to need them to kind of keep fighting out here.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297