Shouppe, Rattlers not stressing tournament fate after end-of-season run

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By: Ryan Kelly | WCTV Eyewitness Sports
May 22, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Florida A&M baseball is set to go to the big dance for the first time since 2015, but don't expect a ton of stress from the Rattlers; the hard part is already over.

"The pressure's on everybody else, it's not on us," said FAMU manager Jamey Shouppe. "I don't think a lot of people expected us to be there. I may have agreed with them when we started the season 0-6, but we're just happy to be here and anything can happen in baseball."

It's a fact the Rattlers know all too well, after rallying to win nine of their last 12 conference games and taking the MEAC championship, despite being down to their last strike twice. The pressure is hardly a problem.

"We felt like, as a pitching staff, we had to come out and throw strikes and our hitters made clutch hits and we were so happy. It was a surreal moment," said right handed pitcher Jeremiah McCollum.

"Feel like it was a lot of pressure we'd already prepared for and all we had to do was execute it," added infielder and former Rickards star Kaycee Reese.

"Playing like we did with our backs against the wall, down to our final strike two different times, I think they're ready and feel confident enough to maybe make some noise somewhere," said pitching coach Bryan Henry.

While the Rattlers won't officially learn their fate until Memorial Day, prognosticators are attempting to predict where they'll go. At the beginning of the week, had them as the #4 seed in the Athens Regional. They also had Florida State in the same regional.

Baseball America also has the Rattlers heading to Dawg Country, again as a #4 seed.

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