Q&A with Coach Irwin

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 13, 2013) With opening weekend in the books, ETSU softball head coach Brad Irwin sat down with the media relations staff to answer some questions and update the fans and media about the status of the team.

Below are Coach Irwin’s responses to the second installment of the 2013 season.

1. We opened the season this past weekend at Auburn, but obviously did not get the results we were hoping for. What is your evaluation of how things went?

“It’s never good to go 0-4, but when you step back and look at the weekend as a whole I feel like there were a lot of mistakes made that are fixable. We’re addressing and working on those problems this week in practice. We had way too many errors, too many walks and left way too many people on base. In four games, we left 28 runners on base. The positive is that we got runners on, but we need to get those runs home.

“We had a lot of young people play and had some opening-weekend jitters. We’ve got that behind us now. We’re going to make a few changes defensively that will make us better in that department.”

2. What were some individual performances this weekend that you felt stood out?

Sam Carpenter (Forest City, N.C.) had a really good weekend in her first collegiate action. She hit two home runs in the Kent State game and led off the Army game with a double off the wall. Offensively, we were really excited to see her swinging the bat well. I also thought Jackie Baird (Ooltewah, Tenn.) had a good weekend at the plate. She came out of it with an on-base percentage over .500 and had some big hits for us.

“As far as pitching, Sam Harrell (Okeechobee, Fla.) threw some good innings. She had a few too many walks but we feel she can get that corrected.”

3. What are your thoughts on this weekend’s College of Charleston Classic?

“We’ll definitely have some good competition in Charleston. We open up with Towson and Syracuse on Friday, which are two good programs. Syracuse is receiving votes in the national poll. Saturday, we play the College of Charleston and James Madison. They’re both traditionally strong programs. JMU has a new coach who I’m sure will do an outstanding job with the team. We wrap it up Sunday against Akron who is very tough as well. There will be a lot of good competition, some really good softball atmosphere and we’ll look to get on the winning track.

“Offensively, we’ll tinker with the lineup some as we begin the weekend, but as it progresses we’ll start zoning in on more stability. We’ll be in good shape if Jackie and Sam [Carpenter] can keep rolling from last weekend and if we can get some other bats to catch fire.”

4. Are there any additional thoughts you would like to share regarding the team?

“I still feel like this team has a very good outlook for the season. If we address and correct the things we talked about, I have no doubt we can be successful. We need to get a few wins under our belt and get some confidence going. Starting 0-4 is tough, but once we get some confidence going we’ll get competitive and get where we need to be.”

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