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June 17, 2012

Bobby Brown

Andy Lopez

Seth Mejias-Brean

Konner Wade


Arizona テや 4
UCLA テや 0

THE MODERATOR:テつ Give us an overview on the win.
COACH LOPEZ:テつ Needless to say, Konner Wade's performance, it's an understatement for me to say he was outstanding.テつ He was pretty doggone good.
But, again, I thought it was a great matchup.テつ We were fortunate enough to get one inning where we got some offense, and when you have two good clubs getting together like that, you know, that was the difference.
So, again, really excited for Konner.テつ Happy for our guys, and, once again, just a great, great college baseball game.テつ And fortunate to get one inning of offense.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Questions.

Q.テつ Konner, how were you able to have so much success pounding the zone today?テつ I know sometimes it seems like you've had trouble, you have so much life, how were you able to harness that today?
KONNER WADE:テつ I felt good the past three weeks or so.テつ I felt comfortable with the movement I've had.テつ Feel like I'm starting to get more of a bearing for how much it is moving.テつ And I just tried to work arms out away, let it run back over the plate.

Q.テつ Seth or Bobby, could you speak to what happened there in the fourth inning that Vander Tuig had a good night but otherwise you were able to string some things together?
BOBBY BROWN:テつ He left some balls up there that one inning.テつ We took advantage of it, put some good swings on the ball.テつ It worked out for us.
But I tip my hat to their starting pitcher.テつ He shut us down except for that inning.

Q.テつ It was the fifth, UCLA loaded the bases and Lopez came out, said something to you.テつ How did that conversation go?テつ And the next pitch I think you get out of it.
KONNER WADE:テつ Just keep my composure, make my pitches.テつ That's what I tried to do.

Q.テつ Was there a time earlier in the year where that would have rattled you maybe more than it did?
KONNER WADE:テつ I wouldn't say rattled.テつ Probably wouldn't have handled it as well as I did.テつ But I was able to get out of it.

Q.テつ That double play ball late, how much help did that give you?
KONNER WADE:テつ That was huge.テつ Couple of those pitches I made before that weren't where I wanted to be.テつ And I was able to get through that inning, which was nice.

Q.テつ Coach, your team so far in Omaha has shown how complete they are.テつ Could you speak on that matter?
COACH LOPEZ:テつ I appreciate the compliment.テつ Thank you so much.
I think all of us probably have a few flaws, that's why we play college baseball.テつ We played well obviously‑‑ I think we've played well for about the last six weeks, quite candidly.テつ We lost the game to Oregon at home, and from that point on I think there were three weeks left in conference play.テつ I told our guys:テつ If you want to host, you can't lose another series.テつ From here on, you have to go two out of three or sweep.
Which they did a pretty good job of.テつ And obviously we played well in the Regional and Super Regional and we played well here for two nights.
It's a group that's been around me for three years, and you get to know a group of athletes in three years very easy.テつ They like to play.テつ They like to compete.テつ They don't‑‑ they're not in awe of too many things.テつ It's an easy group to be around.
As I told them when we were out in left field, I like suiting up with this group.テつ They're fun to come to the yard and suit up with them, because you know they're going to give you their best.テつ They're going to give you every pitch.テつ They're going to give you every at‑bat.テつ They're going to compete.
And, really, like I said, it's a game played by young people.テつ I mean, that could‑‑ we could very easily be playing right now.テつ Both pitchers, nine strikeouts, very good performance.テつ He had one bad inning.
But, again, it's a joy to be around these guys.

Q.テつ Coach, does the start to this tournament, the first couple of games, remind you of any previous appearances you've had in Omaha, maybe in 1992?
COACH LOPEZ:テつ '92 we shut out‑‑ we pitched two shutouts, shut out Wichita State and Texas, and I think about five or six innings in our next game shutouts as well.テつ We were pitching pretty well in the fourth game.テつ Back then, if you remember, there was‑‑ one win and you were out.テつ Or you could lose a game, your first game but for the national championship, it was a little different format now.
It feels different.テつ I'm sorry, it doesn't feel different.テつ It feels pretty similar from the fact that we are getting big hits when we have to.テつ We're making big pitches when we have to right now.テつ We're playing good baseball.テつ And it sounds like a real simple idiotic cliche, but it's something I teach these guys probably how many times a day do I say it?
BOBBY BROWN:テつ Ten to 15 times.
COACH LOPEZ:テつ Ten to 15 times a day I tell these guys the definition of winning is playing good baseball.テつ Strange game, on offense you don't have the ball, you gotta play good baseball, and they understand what that means to them.テつ And they've done a pretty good job of that like I said about six weeks.テつ So far so good.

Q.テつ What's your plan going to be going forward here on Thursday, is it the plan to go with Heyer again or‑‑
COACH LOPEZ:テつ We'll look at it.テつ To be honest with you, we'll discuss it with staff.テつ I may or may not, we'll see who the opponent is and where we're at.テつ Obviously UCLA is very familiar with curt and Florida has seen him for a game.テつ James is available.テつ And we're real comfortable with Farris.テつ We'll play it out.テつ We'll make a decision as we go along.

Q.テつ Is it going to be strange to have three days off?
COACH LOPEZ:テつ We won't have three days off.テつ But we won't have a game in three days.テつ So from that standpoint, they've done that.テつ But we'll practice tomorrow, we'll practice every day we're out here.
I think they'll handle it.テつ I really do.テつ Again, as I mentioned earlier, it's a group that's been pretty resilient.テつ They've been on the road two years in a row.テつ They've understood what it means to get on the road and have to get to this destination on the road.
They had the good fortune of moving to Hi Corbett this year, and things got easier for them.テつ I think there's excitement among these young guys, hey, we're here and let's do the best we can while we're here.

Q.テつ Konner, could you talk about how your confidence has grown in the postseason and the team's confidence moving forward?
KONNER WADE:テつ With the offensive production we've had this year, I just try to go out there and throw strikes.テつ It's been rewarding so far.テつ And I'm going to try to keep doing that.

Q.テつ Konner, could you talk about your previous start against those guys and does that figure into any of your pregame preparation?
KONNER WADE:テつ I got hit pretty hard the last time I pitched against them.テつ And I knew they took advantage of the mistakes I made that game.テつ And I was really eager for the opportunity to throw against them today.
And I was going to try to keep the ball down in the zone and I let my movement take care of it.

Q.テつ Coach, I know Konner was in his groove, but how important was it for your defense, especially your infielders, to kind of be mistake‑free for the most part and not disrupt some of the rhythm Konner had going?
COACH LOPEZ:テつ That's one of the things‑‑ I don't know if you've ever been to Tucson‑‑ but it gets a little warm in Tucson in May.テつ And the field gets real hard.テつ And the ground‑‑ feels like you're on a blacktop sometimes.テつ So our guys take ground balls off of a real hard field every single day.
When you come to a facility like this and it's soft, it's kind of nice.テつ I think it plays to our advantage defensively, I really do.テつ Our guys are‑‑ I mean, again, I'm real thankful to be at the University of Arizona, but if there's a way we could put a cloud cover over the sun when it's‑‑ it's unbelievable.
My first year, I turned to a young assistant I had, I said:テつ Does it ever get cloudy here, like ever?テつ I'm not complaining, but it makes the field awful hard.
And it really‑‑ our guys‑‑ I've seen our guys go to other facilities like a facility like this and the game slows down for them, it really does.テつ It truly does.テつ And so in a real strange way I'm kind of glad now because it's made our guys better infielders.
I think our guys are really efficient, and because they have to be on a real hard field at high Corbett.テつ So as I've told our pitching staff, strikes get rewarded and ground balls get doubly rewarded because of the guys playing behind them.

Q.テつ Seth, just talk about; is that true what Coach was saying, that you feel a little more comfortable when you go to different venues and a field, a nice surface like this?
SETH MEJIAS‑BREAN:テつ Definitely like Coach said, it slows the game down a little bit.テつ At Hi Corbett, especially at third base, I get some hard shots at my head, at Hi Corbett.テつ It just slows the game down a lot for us.テつ Especially with Konner pitching, he's a ground ball pitcher.テつ It just really helps us, it's real soft and we get to play catch.テつ And that's pretty much it.

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