2009 ACC Women's Basketball Tournament - Game 3 Quotes
March 5, 2009
BOSTON COLLEGE QUOTES
THE MODERATOR: We will start with an opening statement by Coach and questions. I'm joined up here at the podium by Boston College's head coach, Sylvia Crawley as well as Carolyn Swords and Corey Rusin.
COACH SYLVIA CRAWLEY: I'm just extremely proud of our team. I thought that the two games before our game really, really helped us just because there were some upset tonight, and sent a very clear message to our team that we needed to come out and elevate our level of play. Just because in a tournament, it's a new season for a lot of teams. So we definitely came out, fought hard. I was extremely proud of how we played off the bench. We have a lot of points off the bench tonight. I don't even know like to use that word bench. We call our team that doesn't start the white team, but our team delegated this game to our senior Corey Rusin. In more ways than just what you see on a stat sheet, she was responsible for helping us win this game tonight.
THE MODERATOR: Questions.
Q. Carolyn, can you explain in the second half, you and Stefanie combined for 6 lay-ups in the post, often doing a high-low thing, can you explain why that worked so well after you didn't score much in the first half?
CAROLYN SWORDS: Sure. I thought the guards did a really great job of reading our defense, from where they were playing. We worked a lot in practice over the past few days. As far as defenses I decided to skip. If they were syncing in on either one of us, Murphy was doing a great job of moving off the ball, and I was able to find her. She is with a great passer and gets the ball to me. She and I worked very well together and I was happy with the way that she did.
COACH SYLVIA CRAWLEY: Can I just add that, I think where this team has grown, in the first half our strategy was to get the ball inside. We got Carolyn very few touches, Stefanie Murphy very few touches. I think where the maturity with this team has come in, I think in the past, they would have turned the ball over trying to get it inside if I was saying, get the ball inside. I thought they did a really good job of reading. It wasn't there. They didn't force it, we found other ways to score. So we scored a little bit more from the outside. Our guards, we got points in the paint from penetration. The second half they zoomed in more on those players and I thought we were able to get the ball inside. So a lot of patience and a lot of maturity on this team's behalf. We ended the game with 14 turnovers which has got to be one of our season highs.
Q. Highs or lows? COACH SYLVIA CRAWLEY: Lows, yes. But a season high in terms of only 14 rebounds for us.
Q. Corey, about the situation where you could have played your last ACC team as a senior, what were your thoughts going into tonight?
COREY RUSIN: You know in the past we haven't had great -- in the past we haven't had a great time here in the tournament, and I think we just came in here with the mindset that you know we want to make the big dance, and we need a good 20 wins to do that. So we just came in with a lot of energy. We are ready to get a ring and that's why we are here.
Q. Either of the players, you had 20 overall wins in 7-7 and 8-8 counting the tournament in conference play, didn't get in last year which is historically very odd that that doesn't get a team in, are you aware of your RPI is much better this year, just what your resume is, do you think about that?
COACH SYLVIA CRAWLEY: We talk about it all the time. You know we definitely have a tougher strength of schedule this year which is part of the reason our RPI is higher. The ACC is so tough. We had an extremely difficult February where we had some losses, but they were considered good losses because we lost to teams with an RPI of 3, 8, 9, 11 and 24. So at the end of that month it definitely made our team a stronger team. So I think our team, in my opinion, were very much prepared for the tournament, more so than many of the other teams just because our team knows that they can play back-to-back tough games and still bounce back and still compete on a very high level. So our month of February prepared us for what we are going through right now.
Q. Having said that you wouldn't necessarily ask the conference office to give you that again next year, would you?
COACH SYLVIA CRAWLEY: No, not at all.
THE MODERATOR: Questions?
Q. Corey, can you describe what your role was in sort of the high-low deal of getting the ball down in the post in the second half?
COREY RUSIN: Well, I think because in the first half, you know, they were doubling so much down in the post that we were able to get open looks on the outside. In the second half they had to respect us shooters on the outside, so it left the middle open. Just like Carolyn said, the posts passed great to each other tonight, we got inside and out looks. So just moving the ball well, we executed our plays really well in the second half.
Q. Any butterflies going into your first ACC tournament today?
COACH SYLVIA CRAWLEY: Not at all. I think everything starts from the head and trickles down. I'm very, very calm on the sidelines as you can see. I think that gives our players a little piece of mind. We needed to keep our composure tonight, so when I get rattled, they get rattled. I've been here before as a player and as a coach. I was more excited to play, more so than have butterflies and be nervous before the game. I'm happy that we got our first win and we will get some rest. We don't have a lot of time to celebrate. We have to start on Florida State tonight.
Q. You haven't seen the Seminoles in a while, 8 of the 11 opponents you only play once; do you feel like you know them well enough? It's hard to really know everybody inside out, isn't it, when you only place most of them once?
COACH SYLVIA CRAWLEY: Yes, but we just recently played them in the month of February. It was earlier in the month for us. We remember. We'll watch our clips and we will watch tapes, and we will see what worked and what did not work and make some adjustments and come in here ready to play tomorrow.
THE MODERATOR: Coach, when you are ready, an opening statement, and we will take questions.
COACH KATIE MEIER: By far it is the best Boston College has played. We played them three times and a credit to them. That was a clinic, a composure. I think the game came down to both teams trying to run the shot clock down and which team in the last 10 seconds which team held it together and would stay composed. They have two nice options there if they get stuck. They got two very, very good post players that have a great basketball IQ. So they do have that relief. I thought they made some special plays as the shot clock ran down and we didn't. And I think when there was a breaking moment in the game, I felt as a coach that that contrast was real damaging and really hurt our chances to win.
THE MODERATOR: Questions?
Q. They outscored you 40 to 18 in the paint, what did you need to do better to counteract that?
COACH KATIE MEIER: Yes, we really mis-communicated a lot on the defensive end. I will give them credit too. They went a little bit later in their shot clock possessions in their post than they normally do. They went through a couple of things. They caught us in our switching defenses. It's a credit to their staff. But even for their kids to that have patience and composure to find that later in the offense, they haven't done that the last two times we played them. They would catch our point guard on their four a lot and get a score.
Q. Coach, you had a stretch in the first half where you missed 11 straight shots over a five minute period. Was it shot not falling or did their defense have something to do with it?
COACH KATIE MEIER: You will never hear me as a coach say, if we just hit those shots. I always think it's a function of coaching and execution. I really do. I don't want to discredit the defense. Even if they are wide open lay-ups, you got to get your kids ready to hit them. It was a tough stretch for us, and I felt it was crucial in terms of kind of breaking us up. We lost our chemistry and flow. Not so much that stretch of time, but what it did for us mentally. I think we lost some faith and confidence during our offensive game plan during that stretch.
Q. Scoring and rebounds, what has been the impact on your program?
COACH KATIE MEIER: It's huge. The best part it is there is no, I'm not going to mask that. The team doesn't need to be jealous of Momo (Mo Bennett of Georgia Tech) or Shenise (Johnson, it's not like that at all. She is a competitor. When you are at practice every day, and the kid is out there earning it, and earning the respect day in and day out, and she is not just the leading rebounder in games, we chart every rebound in practice. We have a most intense practice player, we call it MIPP, and a Windex player every day in practice. She is one or the other almost every day. So I don't have to worry about anything. It's well earned. She just doesn't just show up for games. The kid wins almost ever drill she is on. I'm sorry, the young lady.
Q. Shenise, what is the biggest lesson that you learned this season?
SHENISE JOHNSON: I'm going to have to say leadership and mental toughness, mostly from my seniors, Lamese James, Latoya Drake, our captain, Latoya Cunningham, mentally just to persevere through everything. It's not going to be easy, but we must overcome.