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May 29, 2014

Lauren Chamberlain

Patty Gasso


Alabama: 6
Oklahoma: 2

THE MODERATOR:  Here with Oklahoma, head Coach Patty Gasso and Lauren Chamberlain.  We will begin with an opening statement from Coach Gasso.
COACH GASSO:  I thought Jaclyn Traina threw very well, and I thought Alabama brought their bats and they swung it really well tonight and they took advantage of opportunities that they had.
I feel like we got a little uncharacteristic approach tonight.  I know that we're a better offensive team.  We hit a few balls hard.  We had a couple of opportunities.  Shelby got things started, so I felt like momentum was really on our side and we were starting to go with some things and then they answered like a good team does.  They answered after that and then in the 4th, when we got them to create an error to allow us to score a run, they, like a good team does, answered back when that happened.
I credit them for answering anything we tried to put out there, but we didn't put anything out there.  We're a better team than that.  I think myself and the entire team was disappointed with our offensive approach tonight.  I guess the best way to say it is we were playing defense on offense and we're better than that.  I thought Erin Miller did a good job of finding her way on base.  We expected they would go around Lauren and I thought Shelby swung the bat well tonight, but after that we just didn't have much production and against a team like Alabama you gotta have production.
So we had a talk in the locker room about a new approach in order to stay in this tournament but I felt like we just didn't do a good job of competing with everything we had from the start of the game to the finish.  There were signs but it just wasn't enough, not against a team like that.  Gotta regroup and come back and fight, fight, fight!

Q.  Patty, could you talk about Stevens' performance in the circle?
COACH GASSO:  I thought Kelsey started strong and threw some really good pitches, and some of the pitches that she threw that got hit hard looked like they were pretty good pitches.  For her first big outing I know she gave up some big runs and that's unfortunate, but I thought for her first outing she was okay.  I thought she competed and what I really love is what Pendley did coming in to try to keep us in the game.  You can't give up the bombs like that, you just can't.  You gotta keep the ball in the yard, but she competed tonight I felt that for sure.

Q.  You mentioned that you thought you were a little defensive at the plate.  Is it hard to not be defensive when Traina is pitching as well as she did and mowing you down with strikeouts?
LAUREN CHAMBERLAIN:¬† We had a plan and it didn't get executed so I think it wasn't‑‑ we were defensive but we knew what we had to do, it just wasn't clicking.

Q.¬† Kind of following up on that, Traina threw about 50% strikes, which is not the kind of numbers you see in a 1‑hitter.¬† Is that part of what might have kept you off balance?
COACH GASSO:  Was the fact that?

Q.  She threw about 50% strikes.
COACH GASSO:  Part of it is I don't think we did a good job of swinging at strikes.  We started chasing things out of the zone.  But a good pitcher can deceive you that way and that's what she's very good at.

Q.  Top of the 4th you got Kelly and Erin on first and second there and Kelly takes a big league step, was that a called play?  Was she supposed to go or was she supposed to stop?
COACH GASSO:  I don't know what she was supposed to do, but it worked.

Q.  Lauren you guys have been an outstanding hitting team for the last few years.  In this game as you pointed out you weren't as aggressive as you wanted to be, so what will you guys do to regroup for Saturday?
LAUREN CHAMBERLAIN:  We have a plan for each pitcher we face and key word "clutch" just clutching up.  Finding a way.  We just kinda got late in the game thinking it's gonna come, it's gonna come.  Its go time from here on out and every team is good here, so I don’t think you can take a pitch off while you're in the World Series and that proved tonight.

Q.  Coach, Alabama's coach was saying he would rather not face a team he's already played, you guys play Lafayette, does that help do you feel like, knowing your opponent already?
COACH GASSO:¬† I feel the opposite.¬† I want to play a team that we know, especially a team that we didn't have success against because anytime you get a chance to rebound from that‑‑ I think we're a completely different team than what Lafayette saw back in March.¬† I know this team is excited to play them.¬† I think we're both familiar with each other but, again, we're different, and I think that will help us.

Q.  Coach, could you describe the effort of Shelby Pendley, the way she flipped over a dugout and the way she was going after balls?
COACH GASSO:¬† She's a competitor.¬† The fact that she can play a great third base, I can bring her in to pitch, she can keep us in a game by coming in in relief.¬† She hits a first‑inning home run.¬† She is a complete player, she can run well.¬† She's just a complete player.¬† It's been enjoyable watching her get better and she loves to get better and loves to work and loves to train.¬† She loves that opportunity to compete.¬† She is one of the better ones I've seen in a long time.

Q.  Patty, you've been here in a hole before and you can speak to how hard it is to dig out.  What do you have ahead of you?
COACH GASSO:  Completely different approach, and I think a day off right now is good for us to just kinda gather it up.  This team would want to get back on the field right now and try to make it right.  We need to take some time to gather this together and have a better fight.  I need leaders, upper classmen, those who have been here before to lead the way through example.  I need a hunger, I need a passion.  If those things come we're going to do well, we will have success but we need to bring that from the start to the finish.  Can't take a pitch off.  We took too many pitches off tonight.  You cannot take a pitch off.  Not at this venue, not at this level, you cannot take a break.  You have to continue throughout.  You can't step up in the 7th inning when you're down by 4 and decide you want to get into the game, you just can't.  That doesn't make sense.  I'm trusting you're going to see a team that's going to look different, that's going to fight, that's going to put it out on the field just like we did this last weekend with Tennessee in order to get us here.  That's the style and approach we need to take.
THE MODERATOR:  Thank you. 

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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