Jan. 13, 2013
HEAD COACH Ryun Williams
(On his general thoughts of the game)
“The second half was obviously a really nice effort. We put ourselves in position to win in the second half. We just dug ourselves a hole, and that’s kind of been a theme of this group. I’m sure our kids would like those first 10 to 12 minutes back. We played really hesitant, tentative and quiet early on.”
(On the attitude change from his team in the second half)
“What do you have to lose? Why wouldn’t you want to come out and try and punch somebody in the mouth? Not play on your heels? That was all them; those were all adjustments they made.”
(On limiting San Diego State’s scoring)
“Defensively, I thought we were solid. We kept them off-balanced. (Courtney) Clements, we had her contained a little bit. (Chelsea) Hopkins had to earn her points. We made life difficult. We had it right where we needed to be, but to beat a good team you have to make good plays throughout the entire game.”
(On 10 first-half turnovers)
“The frustrating part is how they happened, the lack of poise and tentativeness to them; that’s disturbing.”
(On if his team was intimidated by San Diego State, last year’s league champion)
“It sure looked that way early. Our guard play has to be solid for 40 minutes. Our guard play was really hesitant early, and I thought that was crucial.”
(On dealing with San Diego State’s athleticism through defense)
“Our Triangle 2 was solid. We had them bottled up; there weren’t many places for them to go. We had support everywhere. The kids shooting the shots, most of the night, were the ones we needed shooting the shots. That was good; I thought our kids executed that part of the floor really well. We did give up some O boards, but that’s just a tough, physical matchup.”
“That late putback by (Deajanae) Scurry hurt. We had some kids there to make the play, but she went and got it.”
(On Hayley Thompson’s season-high eight points)
Hayley came in and played with some poise. She made some big shots, she played with some toughness that kind of relaxed us. Hayley is a good rebounder. She plays 17 minutes and gets six D boards; we have kids who played more minutes and didn’t get half that. She’s just a really intelligent, good player. I’m really pleased with how she played. If we can get her shooting the ball that consistently, she gives us that big pop kid that can be a tough matchup.”
(On using the second half as motivation moving forward)
“I hope it translates sometime soon. We’ve had some bad starts this year. I thought we had learned our lesson. We’ve said this before, but our margin for error is so slim that we can’t have a bad 10 (minutes), a bad 11. As hard as you play, sometimes you can’t have a bad half; these are some good teams we’re playing. We have to help ourselves out by playing a solid 40 minutes.”
(On being within one possession of the defending champions, and the preseason pick to win the Mountain West again)
“That’s how we have to relay that message to our kids: ‘You can play; you can compete, you can score, you can guard.’ They have to believe. We have to get this group to really believe that they we can do this. Let’s not wait and see what happens, let’s make something happen. It will give this group confidence. We’ll use this as an advantage for us.”
(On coming out against San Diego State)
“We just came out really tentative and that’s not a team you can come out tentative with. They’re so athletic and quick. So we just got together in the locker room and decided we needed to be the aggressor. It just came too late. We’ve got some young girls. It’s not their fault. This is a tough team to play against for their first conference game.”
(On making her baskets)
“I was definitely relived.”
(On new defense)
“We recognized that we’re not going to be the most athletic team all the time on the floor, but what’s changing now is that we’re committing to playing a defense that we can succeed at. We’re figuring out how to play that defense with each other. I think it will pay off. I think we actually descended pretty well tonight; they just got a lot of second opportunities.”
(On looking forward)
“If anything good can come out of this loss, it’s that we can play with supposedly the best team in the league, and for the conference. I think that from here forward, we know that we can play with the best, we just have to have that confidence initially and throw the first punch when we go out.”
“Shooters always have to shoot.”
(On playing San Diego State)
“Our team was kind of playing tentative. I’ve played against these guys several times. I needed to show my team that they’re not made of steel, that we can beat them. We beat them last year. We just needed to be aggressive. Their defense breaks down too. They came out really amped up, hitting all their shots. As time went on they were missing their shots and getting a little bit tired. We can’t just get down like that in the beginning. We need to be more aggressive. We need to finish our plays. We played frantic in the beginning.”
(On new defense)
“Our coaches put in a pretty good game plan against them. We put in some new defenses, kind of mixed it up. We focused on their two best players. We didn’t want them to score 20 points or something crazy like that. It really slowed them down. By stopping them, I think it helped us a lot.”
“We were frantic. We just need to calm down, get the ball up the court and run our offense. When we did that we got really good shots.”
(On having a bye week)
“I think we got the rest. We needed to rest our bodies. I think we have felt better this week. So it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing.”
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