NCAA Tempe Regional Notes And Quotes
June 2, 2005
#1 Coastal Carolina - Ricky Shefka, Jr., RHP, 11-2, 2.51 ERA
vs. #4 UNLV - Matt Luca, Jr., RHP, 5-6, 4.45 ERA
#2 Arizona State - Jason Urquidez, Sr., RHP (8-4, 4.21 ERA)
#3 East Carolina - T.J. Hose, Fr., RHP (7-3, 3.96 ERA)
Arizona State senior RHP Jason Urquidez
On hosting the regional at ASU:'I was surprised to hear that we were even hosting. I thought that we were headed somewhere else, so its good for us. We've played the whole season to get to this point and now we are sitting pretty, playing at our own place. This is the time that we can hopefully get on a roll.
'I wish we did get to sleep in our own beds, but Coach has us on lockdown in a hotel. He's trying to make it all business. But I'm definitely happy that we have the home field advantage and the heat on our side. We've been playing here all year so hopefully it plays to our advantage.'
On ASU receiving a two-seed in the tournament:'Look at the schedule we've played. We have played a hard schedule and a lot of hard teams. To be honest, I didn't know who Coastal Carolina was, but I just pay attention to our team and what we have to get done. I'm just trying to stay on point.'
On distractions with the upcoming draft and his decision to stay for his senior year:'I thought about it for a week, week and a half. I just had a bitter taste in my mouth after the loss to Cal St. Fullerton. But I just have that drive to win a national championship. I want to start my pro career, but this is a once in a lifetime thing.
'Coach has kept us pretty level-headed and we are trying not to think about anything else other than getting our stuff done. We're trying to forget about the other teams and the draft and just get our intensity going.'
On the possibility of meeting Arizona in the Super Regional:'That would be great. They beat us up a little bit this year and it would be great to get a chance to meet them in the playoffs and sending them packing back home.'
Arizona State junior 3B/OF Travis Buck
On being a number two seed in your own park:'Coming in to last weekend, we knew we had a 50-50 chance of hosting. As long as we are hosting, we definitely have a shot at advancing. We have no problem with a two-seed, we are in the tournament. We are in our park and we're comfortable with it.
'This is the best team I've been on in three years. Talent-wise, we are right up there with the last two years. How together and close this team is, that is what sets it apart from the other teams I've been on. 34 wins with the number one schedule in the country is pretty good. It's only going to help us to prepare for regionals and once we get past that hopefully. I'm not complaining about our record. We are in the regionals, which is where we wanted to be, and we will take it from there.'
On being in lockdown at the team hotel during the regional:'We don't want to take any chances. We have worked too hard and come too far to let something little stand in our way, like a distraction, and affect the team in a bad way. A lot of guys are complaining about being in the hotel, but I think it is a good thing to get away from everybody else and stay together as a team. Its important for us to go out there as one team and have nothing else to worry about.'
Arizona State Head Coach Pat Murphy:
On hosting the regional:'I'm excited for our players. They have battled through a lot and here they are. They are at home and they get the hometown fans. We at times haven't played like a great club, but we are a great club. We have more quality wins than any team in the country and this is the time to put it together. Maybe our expectations are too high, but that's the nature of this program. We expect to win every year.
'I think we deserved it. If you followed college baseball all year, nobody had the same number of quality of wins that we had. That is what got us here. They are all playoff caliber teams and we'll do what we have to out there.'
On the opponents in the regional:'East Carolina was in the Super Regional last year and they returned a lot of those players, so they have some experience with the situation. They also played us down here for three games last year so they are not going to be intimidated by ASU. Coastal has won 45 games a year a bunch of times and been in regionals every year, UNLV played here in the regional two years ago so a lot of those kids have been there. They have good talent. I don't look as anybody seeded as anything. I don't see us as below Coastal or above UNLV. There's an opportunity to go out there everyday, play good, and win. Hopefully, we can move on.'
On tomorrow's starter senior RHP Jason Urquidez:'I believe that this kid is going to pitch in the pros for a long time. A number one starter in the big leagues? No, but I still think he is going to pitch a long time in the pros. To put up the number one schedule for two years in a row and to be a 20-game winner (as the Friday night starter) is amazing. We didn't even go to the Super Regionals last year and he still put up 12. That's pretty good. He has pitched against everyone's best pitcher and is an underrated kid. If you don't have that dominant one guy, he is the next best thing. He believes he is a winner in every sense of the word. He took the long road to get here and I think they realize now that, if you are reading the numbers, this kid is a player. He is a little kid, an underdog, a fighter, and I like him. I think this will wake some scouts up.'
On the difficult schedule and the team's struggles offensively:'It's been tough with our struggles and we don't have the dominant pitching or tremendous offensive, yet. I like this club so much. I don't know if I've just grown up and I like myself more, but I think that there is more in this club that they haven't showed yet. They have been resilient and if you follow the teams that they've played and who they have beaten, they always pull something out. I like the feeling I get from them. You could say we are very young, but we have enough older guys. Larish and Buck, it's time for them to step up and get the offense going.
'Because we have played such a grueling schedule, we've never gotten on a role. We never had 9 or 12 games that where we could just roll and put up numbers. We only play every weekend and we didn't play those teams that are suspect. We haven't had that roll that we've had on other years, but I hope we are on it. I hate to say it, but this is our last chance to find it.
'We've always had that friendly schedule that lets us find our roll and we just didn't have it this year. Even last year, we didn't start too good, but we had a stretch where everything was going our way. We haven't had it yet so hopefully its forthcoming. They are a good team that has proven that they can beat anybody so lets do it.'
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