We are joined by elizabeth mason and katherine sandercock questions for our student athletes. We will begin with eric bailey. Hey guys, can you just this is for both players? Can you just talk about forgetting this game and moving on to game three and playing for a national championship start with elizabeth um yeah i mean any game win or loss is just a rear view. Mirror game you put it behind. You doesn’t affect the next game. We knew that they were going to come out swinging today. We knew they’d, be a different team today, so we’ll be a different team. Tomorrow be a little bit better than we were today and just do what we can tomorrow get the win bathroom yeah i mean coming into it. We knew it was going to be a dog fight. We knew that they’re, a great team. We knew they were going to make adjustments in the box, so that’s what we got that’s. What we saw – and you know this – is why it’s a three game series you got, ta beat us twice or we got ta, beat them twice so we’re ready to get after it tomorrow. Austin curtwright yeah my questions for katherine um. I wanted to ask you uh you’re, doing a pretty good job there, of keeping the uh ou’s offense from you know, hitting the ball in the air and forcing a few ground balls there. And then i wanted to ask you about the home run that jocelyn allo hit you were you surprised that she hit that ball? It seemed like it was in a good spot there down in the zone.
Yeah, i think um. You know there was a tight strike zone, and so i was trying to find the strike on the outside corner um and i couldn’t at first and so that i had to come a little bit back in on her, and i think that you know in that Situation, maybe i should have thrown an inside pitch hindsight’s 20 20, but she’s a great hitter it’s hard to be upset with yourself when jocelyn ello hits a home run off of you. So you know tip your cap. It was a hard pitch to hit and she hit it hard. Catherine you’ve done an amazing job in the postseason and the world series um. Is it fun for you as a pitcher to to face a lineup like oklahoma and and to challenge them and get after them, it’s, so fun it’s? What you work for all year, long it’s, you know it’s the position that every pitcher wants to be in every pitcher wants to be out here. Fighting for a national championship, so i’m very grateful to be here. Um. You know we’ve i’ve put in the works and i you know it’s, just the whole team just has to go after it and get it, but yeah it’s, super fun and we’re all just really happy to be here. Well, elizabeth. You guys have done an amazing job of passing the path, certainly in the last two games, but throughout the world series.
What does that mean? Is that just sharing information? Is that feeding off momentum? What does that mean to you guys, um past? The bat just means do the job that you can, whether it’s bunt get them over whatever it may be, and give that chance to the next batter behind you to do their job as well. And if we can continue to do that, that means we’re putting hits together. That means we’re getting runs across the board so yeah past the bat just means kind of like get a rally going or you know, put some hits together. Elizabeth now, uh catherine uh. Two questions: first of all, how is your leg um and also when you play a team like oklahoma? Do you always kind of you know you always kind of have that feeling that you know they’ve got these hitters that you know can completely change an ending. I guess what’s that, like going up and up against an offense like that yeah my leg is fine. It’S fine i’ll probably have a bruise, but nothing too bad and um going against an offense like. Oh you. I think that you can kind of take it two ways you can get really into the numbers and be super intimidated by them or you could just stay within yourself. Stay grounded and remember that you know a drop ball’s, a drop ball, no matter who you’re pitching it to the mound is still 43 feet away: it’s still softball it’s.
Still, what we’ve been working for all year, long so um, you know just trying to focus on pitching my game rather than pitching to the oklahoma lineup kurt weiler, elizabeth, you you broke through again early tonight with the home run from there juarez really settled in and Kind of limited what you were able to do in terms of stringing, the heads together and all that i guess what was she doing, that was making it so hard to kind of get on base against her um. I would say me personally: she threw me that um slow spinner away um my second at bat, but i made the adjustment. My third at bat um, their left fielder made a great play. I’D say we were barreling her up the majority of the game. I don’t think that we were out of the game at any point in time. Didn’T fall, but it might tomorrow we’re going to make adjustments same way, they’re going to make adjustments and she’s a great pitcher. We have a great hitting staff as well, so just going to have to get after it tomorrow get some scouting under our belts and play another game, melvin stith um. Thank you, elizabeth. When you’re playing a team for the third time, do you have to make a whole lot of adjustments to come back or do you think you just have to play a little bit better and do it continue to do what you’re doing to get the win? Um say a little bit of both just trying to get one percent better could be the difference between a win and a loss, but at the end of the day you do have to make adjustments every every game.
Both teams are collecting a lot of information, so they’re going to know more about me and how i performed against their pitchers and i’m, also going to know more about their pitchers and you know their defense. So i think both teams are going to be making adjustments. Both of us are going to come out tomorrow with maybe slightly different game plans and then we’re going to have to make in game adjustments as well, but not necessarily completely changing the game of softball. You don’t um, come out tomorrow with an entirely different game plan, but you do have to come in with a little bit of a different mindset, maybe than you had before ronald smith. Yes, this is ronald e smith. My question for both athletes. A year ago we didn’t have any softball. Now there will be a game three. Just for that talk about the moment and feeling, knowing that you get a chance to play in this in that game and the moment to win a title start with cat, please yeah, um it’s, really awesome. I think that it’s tough coming off a loss right now, but when you look in the big picture, we’re one win away from national championship, which is just so cool and you know again, we’re all just really grateful to be here. We’Re really happy for each other. We’Re playing for each other right now and um that’s, really all you can ask for so it feels really great to be to get another game tomorrow to get another game in this jersey.
It means the world to us. Well, elizabeth um. I would say that even taking a side last year and the covid year, there’s two teams left in the nation right now. I think every game we every game we play at this point, it’s it’s, like a free game of softball. You know you get to go out there. One more time put the jersey on play with your sisters to left and the right of you and you know just get after the sport that you’ve been playing your whole life. I don’t think i don’t think anyone expected us to be here. So the fact that we’re here is, you know to me, it’s just a blessing to be able to play one more pitch one more hit, whatever one more inning, whatever the situation may be so um. It would have been great to win today, but um it’ll be great to win tomorrow, too so cat elizabeth. Thank you so much for your time. We appreciate it and we’ll see you tomorrow. Thank you. We are now joined by head coach, lonnie, alameda coach. We will begin with tom tibbetts, hey coach uh, you kind of look at tonight’s game as not only just chances for learning opportunities, but just the way for your team to kind of drop. The hammer get get the little bit of maybe whatever jitters throughout the negatives and kind of come back for game three refocus with all the right things ready to do.
How do we do that? Sorry, i couldn’t really hear you in the beginning. Do you ask how we do that yeah? I think he did that sorry. I’M, either yeah. Sorry, coach, microphone difficulties here, yeah, just uh yeah! Just you know, with with that game, do you look at it it’s, just learning, opportunities and, and now just kind of getting the nervous jitters out all the negatives and just being able to come back, refocus for game three yeah i mean i don’t think there’s, any Negatives, i mean we’re playing for national title there’s, two teams left it was a dog fight. They took advantage of some swings and you know there was a couple extra base runners that we allowed to have happen, and you know pitching in defense has been a thing for us. So i mean you know i i knew it was gon na, be a tough game, so it’s just more about just showing up tomorrow and playing than anything that was negative. I think it was very positive. It was fun, it was a great environment. I thought our um team showed up did great nothing to hang their heads about and get after it tomorrow, melvin stiff. Thank you, um coach. It was really just one big inning tonight that really doomed your team um. Do you think that, in the fact that you guys have been super resilient all year, that that will help you tomorrow to come back and play better yeah? Definitely i mean you’re, not any different.
This time of year than you’ve been all along uh. You know, i think that um we’ll be able to flush it and get after it. I mean it’s, just it’s game three for a national championship and i think we keep saying that over and over again but uh. The opportunity to play tomorrow is going to be so much fun, so i know every one of our players wants to be out there and um. You know, i think elizabeth said the other day. You know you got to risk it to earn to to win it or whatever her comment was but that’s the point tomorrow, it’s do or die. One goes home with a trophy and the other one’s. The number two team in the country and um it’s pretty awesome. So i think tonight get some rest get some water it’s supposed to be hot tomorrow and and just get after it, burt weiler, catherine’s stat line, probably not indicative of her performance tonight, especially through those first five innings. Did you see it’s? It seems she seemed pretty upbeat kind of talking to us just now. Do you kind of see her bounce back quickly and i’m? Sure you’ll need her in some capacity tomorrow. Oh for sure, i’m, probably a little nervous in the beginning, like you know everyone when they get out there for the first time and um kind of leading the team, but i think she settled down fine and got after it and gave us a chance right.
We were right there and gave us a chance, and you know you got facing a home run, hitting team and if they get solo shots, so what you know we get a chance to go to bat. So um, yeah we’ve got all our pitchers ready to go. Um, everyone got a little taste of it. Even emma wilson got out there so all hands on deck tomorrow and uh. I think that we got a lot of information on their hitters um. We got a good feel as a pitching staff in the defense. What they bring, and so just just got to get after it and compete tomorrow, elizabeth merrill, who do you think you’ll start tomorrow? I don’t know yet i was shuffle. It seemed like elizabeth and catherine were embracing. The mindset that you’re kind of embracing right now is the whole team. That way did you guys have to talk about that, or did they just have that organically through the course of the game? Yep no travis wilson brought the group together right afterwards and you know just hey: we knew it was going to be tough and at the beginning of the year you said we were one last two teams in the country. Would you want to be in game? Three. Heck yeah, you would like let’s go flush, it let’s, get home, get some rest watch a little. Video and let’s go play for it, so it doesn’t take too long to to talk to the players and their heads are up and yeah let’s play and so you’re over it.
You flush it and you move on. So i think the message was sent, but i also know all the players are all into that too, which i think i think the acc is probably a little undervalued this year. Um, do you think you know duke and clemson virginia tech notre dame nc state? All very good teams. Do you think that how how much did they help you prepare for postseason how’s today help us prepare? No, how did the acc schedule going? Those teams helped you prepare for post um yeah, i mean, i think, just playing softball but yeah. Definitely the acc is risen. I mean we didn’t get to play. Clemson and um got to see them. You know at the acc tournament to get it to play them, but you know they kegel’s awesome they’re going to be great in the future. I mean vautec. Look what they did. You know i, i think uh kelly richards awesome she’s going to be in our league for a long time. So you know you got to earn respect in year in and year out, i still don’t think the acc, even though we won a championship. I mean i even know like at times now, people don’t even know who’s coaching on our coaching staff or um. You know half the time they’re getting our names wrong, but you know you got it year in and year out. Prove it and we got ta. Do it as a conference and and we’re up for the challenge and uh we’re here representing the acc but there’s gon na be way more teams here in the future, at the world series that are from the acc too um.
Just because of that fight mentality – and we want to be here – why there not obviously the the offensive production in terms of showing up with hits and runs from the other night. But it seemed like even a lot of the outs were kind of loud outs. A lot of barreling up juarez, i guess how much confidence does that give you if you kind of, are facing her again tomorrow? What maybe some of those might find the ground yeah? Definitely you know it was both ways right, you’re throwing punches, throwing punches and you know the loudouts it’s. Just you know you got ta, take advantage of you know the errors or the miscommunication or the walks like those are the big things. So when you’re facing a team that that is um home run extra base hit, i mean obviously every one of their hitters can do some damage but you’re holding them down. You know at the same mindset with us. I mean they made some great plays with us too. So um we’ve seen all of their pictures uh. We know what they have. They know what we have. I mean there’s gon na be no secrets tomorrow, it’s just guts and grit tomorrow and who could take advantage of the momentum. Elizabeth merrell, elizabeth, oh, i didn’t have anything. Okay, irish shuffle! You just touched on it your last answer, but both teams made some fantastic defensive plays uh. It seems like the play, the style you know the overall play for this series has been at a really high level.
How much fun has it been as a coaching staff to just be a part of this? This battle yeah, i you know a team um, prepares all season long, not just for the the big swing i mean it’s, the pitching it’s, the defense it’s the base running and this series right now has shown um. You know the cuts and relays the great plays in the outfield, the great glove work in the infield. The communication – i mean it’s any little kid watching this softball game in this tournament. Right now has got to be pretty excited about. You know making her entire softball game pretty complete and as a coach, it’s really cool to see. You know because uh way, back in the day, probably when i played it was a lot of pitching and hitting, and that was it and it went too athletic in the playing field and now there’s. So many great plays and shifts and it’s just a lot of fun and as a fan i can’t imagine, the momentum swings back and forth and every person that comes up to the plate that there’s something that’s going to happen and it’s just really engaging, which is Why our sport is so popular right now, and so many people are are tuning in it’s, just a it’s, a really fun game so from the dugout. It is too last one for coach, melvin smith. Oh she mentioned how popular uh softball is getting um last night.
It was the third highest um rated sporting event on tv, with almost 1.9 million viewers. Do you guys feel that? Are you guys, um extra pumped, that you know you’re helping the game, but also the florida state program is getting some super great exposure as well yeah. I mean it’s hard to comprehend, sometimes um. You know we’ve always been about growing the game, so it is definitely about florida, state softball in the acc for sure. But you want the game to be great um and you want people to fall in love with what we’ve you know what our passion is all about. I think right now, i’ve been more wowed just because i’m here living it and there’s. Ten thousand people in the stands yelling for softball and maybe 9 000 are for oklahoma and you know maybe a thousand are for us, but it’s the game of softball’s brought us together and i think that’s so awesome so um. You know having been here as a student and played here at the university of oklahoma and to see how it’s grown i’m just super proud of all of us. That put the time in really excited for the kids that are playing on the field, because they’re going to continue to grow this game – and you know just just taking it all in in these moments right now, it’s just it’s, a very, very fun popular, exciting game That we’re putting on the field coach alameda.
Thank you for your time. As always, we appreciate it. Thank you.