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|LSU to make first NCAA tourney road trip since '89|
BATON ROUGE -- The Southeastern Conference Tournament Champion LSU baseball team will travel across the country for the NCAA Regional, and the Tigers will face 2008 Super Regional foe UC Irvine in the opening game on Friday, June 4.
No. 6 national seed UCLA will meet Kent State in the Los Angeles Regional.
Tentative game times are 4 p.m. CT for LSU-UC Irvine, and 8 p.m. CT for UCLA-Kent State, then 4 and 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. If a game 7 is necessary, it will be played Monday at 8 p.m. The official schedule will be announced after ESPN determines which games will be televised live.
LSU (40-20) takes to the road for the NCAA's double-elimination, four-team regional round for the first time. In 1989, LSU traveled to College Station, Texas, for an eight-team regional and defeated Texas A&M, 5-4 in 11 innings, to advance to the College World Series.
This year, the Tigers will need to stay alive in an opponent's ballpark for an opportunity at a best-of-three NCAA Super Regional series at a site to be determined.
The UCLA Regional is paired with the Cal State Fullerton Regional for Super Regional play on June 11-14.
As visiting teams receive only a small allotment of tickets, LSU encourages fans to contact the host school's ticket office to purchase NCAA Regional books.
Tickets to NCAA Regional games via UCLA will go on sale Tuesday at 10 a.m. PT (noon CT).
Fans will be able to purchase tickets through UCLA's Central Ticket Office (310-825-2101). Beginning Tuesday, fans may only purchase All-Session Reserved ($80 adult/$65 student) or All-Session General Admission ($55 adult/$40 student) packages.
Single-game tickets will not be available until Friday. Reserved single-game tickets will cost $15 for adults and $12 for students. General admission single-game tickets will cost $10 for adults and $8 for students.
LOS ANGELES REGIONAL
June 4-7 | Los Angeles
Friday, June 4
Game 1: UC Irvine (37-19) vs. LSU (40-20) (4 p.m.)
Game 2: UCLA (43-13) vs. Kent State (39-23) (8 p.m.)
Saturday, June 5
Game 3: Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser (4 p.m.)
Game 4: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner (8 p.m.)
Sunday, June 6
Game 5: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 loser (4 p.m.)
Game 6: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner (8 p.m.)
Monday, June 7
Game 7: Game 6 winner vs. Game 6 loser (if necessary) (8 p.m.)
LSU NCAA Tournament Announcement
May 31, 2010
Quotes from LSU coach Paul Mainieri
"Quite frankly, I was a little surprised. The only negative for me is for our fans. It might be a little more difficult for some of them to travel because it would be an airplane trip now. That breaks my heart because they've given us such great support all year long and I wish they could be there with us. They're a very vital part to our success.
"On the other hand, you can't control what the selection committee does, you just accept it and you move forward. This is it. But as I just told the team, we're in the Big Dance. I know that's something we usually take for granted around here at LSU, but I never take that for granted. Quite frankly, when we went to the SEC Tournament, I wasn't sure we'd be in the Big Dance. When we beat Florida I felt more confident, and obviously when we won the second game I felt it was pretty much a lock at that point. You don't get to choose where you go. I do feel like we got what we deserved. If we had done a better job in the last month of the season, we maybe would have been able to play here at home. But we didn't, so now we've got to take it like men and now we've just got to go out there and get the job done.
"It's not going to be an easy trip, that's for sure. It's a long trip cross-country and we're going to be playing some outstanding teams. It's going to be a tremendous challenge there. It's one that we're going to look forward to and relish. I've said many times over the last month that the story of 2010 has not been written yet. I'm sure many of you didn't think we had a chance to win the SEC Tournament. Probably a lot of people across the country think we have no chance to win this regional, or advance into a super regional or beyond, but let's see what happens. I have a lot of confidence in this team, I think they're showing a lot of toughness and we're looking forward to this challenge.
"I like where our pitching is right now. I remember last year going into the last course of the season, there were so many questions about our bullpen, and then the emergence of Chad Jones and so many other guys, and all of a sudden our bullpen became a strength. All the games matter over the course of the year. I can promise you we try to win every game we play, but the old adage of 'It's not how you start, it's how you finish' that matters most. Quite frankly, I think we're playing our best ball of the year right now."
LSU PLAYER QUOTES
1B Blake Dean
On his thoughts on the Los Angeles regional ...
"It is a good thing for us. It is somewhere new to go play on the road, but at the same team it is going to be very tough for us. It is probably one of the toughest regionals there is going to be, so if we want a challenge we have that waiting for us. We just need to go out there and continue to play baseball the way we have been and the rest will take care of itself."
On the tough teams in the regional ...
"This is basically a "mini-Omaha" and we have to go in there and play the game that way. If we would have done more and taken care of business in the regular season we probably would have it a little easier, but now we are in this situation. We are playing good baseball but we have a challenge ahead of ourselves.
On the confidence of the team right now ...
"Going into the SEC Tournament we were a little off, but we turned things around, tore it up and showed what we were capable of. Guys are hitting the ball and we are making great pitches. We are ready, we are fired up and it gives us confidence. Our pitchers are back on top and hopefully that is all we need to keep rolling."
C Micah Gibbs
On flying to Los Angeles for the regional ...
"I think it will be fun. I have never been to California before so I am looking forward to it. Hopefully we can make it to the super regional and then go from there."
On the team's feelings about going on the road ...
"We have never been on the road for anything but Hoover and Omaha when it comes to postseason play, so it is something new for all of us. This SEC Tournament we were the away team for every game except for one. I felt like we came out and swung the bats well to put pressure on the other team early so hopefully we can continue."
On winning the SEC Tournament ...
"It gave us a ton of confidence. We have always been a really good tournament and postseason team. Rankings don't mean anything anymore."
RHP Anthony Ranaudo
On the regional field ...
"Everyone is pumped up and excited. We know what kind of challenge we are going to face with UCLA, UC Irvine and Kent State. It is a loaded regional and we are looking forward to it. It is going to be a lot of fun for us."
On how the freshmen are playing ...
"Tremendous. I can't say enough about them and how they have stepped up. They have really matured. At this point in the season we don't even look at them as freshman anymore. We continue to look at them and they continue to be clutch."
On entering the postseason ...
"At this point in the season it is a clean slate. It is the post-season and it is a new chapter. It is time to turn the page from the regular season and I think we are playing our best baseball right now. Our pitching staff showed that in Hoover. We are looking forward to the challenges from everyone else in the regional. "
2010 NCAA Division I Baseball Championship
Atlanta Regional hosted by Georgia Tech
#1 Georgia Tech (45-13) vs. #4 Mercer (37-22)
#2 Alabama (37-22) vs. #3 Elon (38-22)
Auburn Regional hosted by Auburn
#1 Auburn (40-19) vs. #4 Jacksonville St. (32-24)
#2 Clemson (38-21) vs. #3 Southern Miss. (35-22)
Austin Regional hosted by Texas
#1 Texas (46-11) vs. #4 Rider (36-21)
#2 Rice (38-21) vs. #3 La-Lafayette (37-20)
Charlottesville Regional hosted by Virginia
#1 Virginia (47-11) vs. #4 VCU (34-24-1)
#2 Mississippi (38-22) vs. #3 St. John's (NY) (40-18)
Columbia Regional hosted by South Carolina
#1 South Carolina (43-15) vs. #4 Bucknell (25-33)
#2 Virginia Tech (38-20) vs. #3 Citadel (42-20)
Coral Gables Regional hosted by Miami (Florida)
#1 Miami (FL) (40-17) vs. #4 Dartmouth (26-17)
#2 Texas A&M (40-19-1) vs. #3 FIU (36-23)
Fayetteville Regional hosted by Arkansas
#1 Arkansas (40-18) vs. #4 Grambling (22-30)
#2 Washington St. (34-20) vs. #3 Kansas St. (36-20)
Fort Worth Regional hosted by TCU
#1 TCU (46-11) vs. #4 Lamar (35-24)
#2 Baylor (34-22) vs. #3 Arizona (33-22)
Fullerton Regional hosted by Cal St. Fullerton
#1 Cal St. Fullerton (41-15) vs. #4 Minnesota (30-28)
#2 Stanford (31-23) vs. #3 New Mexico (37-20)
Gainesville Regional hosted by Florida
#1 Florida (42-15) vs. #4 Bethune-Cookman (35-20)
#2 Fla. Atlantic (35-22) vs. #3 Oregon St. (31-22)
Los Angeles Regional hosted by UCLA
#1 UCLA (43-13) vs. #4 Kent St. (39-23)
#2 LSU (40-20) vs. #3 UC Irvine (37-19)
Louisville Regional hosted by Louisville
#1 Louisville (48-12) vs. #4 St. Louis (33-27)
#2 Vanderbilt (41-17) vs. #3 Illinois St. (31-22)
Myrtle Beach Regional hosted by Coastal Carolina
#1 Coastal Carolina (51-7) vs. #4 Stony Brook (29-25)
#2 Col. of Charleston (42-17) vs. #3 North Carolina St. (38-22)
Norman Regional hosted by Oklahoma
#1 Oklahoma (44-15) vs. #4 Oral Roberts (35-25)
#2 California (29-23) vs. #3 North Carolina (36-20)
Norwich Regional hosted by Connecticut
#1 Florida St. (42-17) vs. #4 Central Conn. St. (33-21)
#2 Connecticut (47-14) vs. #3 Oregon (38-22)
Tempe Regional hosted by Arizona St.
#1 Arizona St. (47-8) vs. #4 Milwaukee (33-24)
#2 San Diego (36-20) vs. #3 Hawaii (33-26)
(Report courtesy lsusports.net)