March 21, 2013
Tulane Head Coach Lisa Stockton
Overall thoughts on the game
"I thought we played a lot better defense in the second half. We gave up so many offensive rebounds in the first half. We really did a good job of clamping down on their shooters in the second half and gave them one shot. I thought that was really key. There was a much different energy in the second half."
On Tulane taking care of the ball in the second half
"Taking care of the ball and creating more turnovers ourselves really helped. We had more possessions in the second half. In the first half, we just didn't have as many possessions as them even though we were shooting better than they were. It was a much better effort."
On if she felt her team took better shots after halftime
"I thought Olivia Grayson took four really good shots in the first half and she was 0-for-4. In the second half, she hit a couple of 3s. They were much better because they went in, I guess. I did think we shot pretty quick (in the first half), especially when we hadn't made a shot in a while. We shot it a little bit quick and just weren't getting any offensive rebounds. You need to have more opportunities."
On Tulane having 11 players score tonight
"I think we've got a lot of players that can come in. Even putting Tierra Jones in at the end, her defensive presence really helped. We knew they were going to crash the boards really hard. She stopped that. We got great contribution from the bench, which we always do. This time of year, you know what you can expect from them and they produced."
On the improvement her young players have made over the last two seasons
"When you look at it, we've got four seniors and everyone else is freshmen and sophomores playing-wise. So we have 10 players that just haven't had court time until this year. They have progressed. I think what we need for next year is for some people to really emerge and that's what we'll wait on, but I do think we have tremendous potential."
On her thoughts going into the second round of the WNIT
"I think the challenge in the WNIT is the travel and how you get there. Also, everybody is good and you'll play on their court. When we play at Arkansas, it's a tough place to play and we've got to be ready to answer that call. The nice thing is we have played some SEC teams so at least we know how physical the league is and we know a little bit about the league so that helps. I do think our team gets pretty motivated to play an SEC team."
On the calming influence of senior guard Olivia Grayson
"The nice thing about Olivia is she just loves to play. As long as we can make the season go, that will be the greatest gift we can give to her. She loves it. She goes out there, and again, the first half wasn't her best half. In the second half, she's calm and just goes out there and plays and hit some big shots for us."
On if it is going to be as hard on her to see Grayson go as it is for Grayson to leave
"Absolutely. You've got a player like that who has been so dedicated and also plays the whole game - she plays offense, defense, rebounds, get steals, blocks shots. She does so much that I couldn't pick what I would miss the most about her game, but it's also her leadership. I think she's been such a great leader this year and she motivates me every day."
On getting the 600th win at home and in the postseason
"It's certainly good to get it here at home. Our program hasn't been around as long as a lot of other programs have been, but it's a big step for us and I'm glad to get it at home."
Senior Guard Olivia Grayson
On Tulane turning up the intensity in the second half
"In the first half, we came out kind of sluggish and not playing our game. We were really playing into their hands because we didn't push the tempo. Coach got into us at halftime and told us that we needed to pick it up and play with more energy in the second half because we have the opportunity to play in the postseason and we were pretty much not taking advantage of it. That really got to us so we came out better in the second half."
On is she made a concerted effort to shoot more in the second half
"No, not really. It was there and it was open, so I shot it. I was just being more aggressive, I guess. It wasn't an effort on my part."
On Tulane's second-half run
"Basketball is a game or runs so when we went on that little run, we just had to keep it going. When they went on their run, we knew we had to match it. That's just how the game goes."
On Tulane's improve ball handling and steal production in the second half
"That's also something Coach said at halftime, that we weren't forcing enough turnovers. We're a better defensive team than the way we played in the first half and we didn't take care of the ball in the first half either. That's just something that we really honed in on in the second half - to pressure the ball more to make it more difficult for them on offense and to take care of the ball when we're on offense."
On if the games are more emotional for her now that she is a senior
"Definitely because any game could be your last game playing for Tulane. You give it all you've got because it's that much more important."
Senior Wing Janique Kautsky
On the first half being an up-and-down affair
"It was. We came in at halftime and it was pretty much even. The one thing that Coach talked about was us on the defensive end and how we needed to be more intense. Defense creates the offense. Even if the (shots) aren't going in, we can stop them with our defense, and I really think we picked it up in the second half. We got a few steals, made a run and hit some nice shots."
On if Coach Stockton talked about taking better care of the ball during her halftime speech
"It was. We discussed how we had nine turnovers at the half, and we're just a better team than that. In the second half, we focused on taking care of it and creating turnovers for them. That was definitely discussed and I think we did a good job of that in the second half."
On Olivia Grayson providing an offensive spark in the second half
"She's such an amazing all-around player and everyone knows that even if she's not scoring, she's doing everything else on the floor well. When she's scoring it's a bonus for us. She's a great scorer and everyone knows what she's capable of. We all know that her shots are going to drop."
On advancing to the second round of the WNIT
"We always get stuck in the second round. No Tulane women's basketball team has been past the second round. It's a little bit of pressure, but it's also exciting to maybe create history and we're excited for the next game."
Senior Guard Tyria Snow
On Tulane's second-half run
"Basically, Coach wanted us to keep them off the offensive boards. (Sequeena Thomas) leads the nation in offensive rebounding. We had to keep them off the glass, not let (Jasmine Johnson) get into the offense and not let them have shots that are wide open where they can do whatever they want. We had to clamp down on defense and we were able to shut them down."
On the pace of the game being rough and rumble
"We love it. We're an up-and-down type of team. We have the guards and switched the line-up to go from big to small. We were able to keep up with them either way."
On advancing to the second round of the WNIT
"It's exciting. We get to play an SEC school, but we're just excited and ready to play. Hopefully we can get past the second round since we haven't been able to do that the last two years."
On her role in the second-half rally
"On the bench, the coaches were staying in my ear. (Jasmine Johnson) was controlling everything. We felt that if we could slow her down, get some stops and get out on a run, we could bust it open. I just tried to come in, give my team the intensity that I could and we're happy that it worked."
On if there was a key to guarding Jasmine Johnson
"Our scout said that she loves to go to her left, so I tried to keep her going right. I think I did a pretty good job. She had six points (when I came in) and she ended up with nine."
On her taking pride in playing defense
"This whole team takes pride in that. That's what the coaches always preach. Every day, our offense isn't going to be on. But if we can play good defense and stop them from scoring, there's no way anybody can beat us."
On having the opportunity to play at least one more home game
"It was amazing to be here in our home environment. These fans have been behind us ever since I got here. It's been four years and it's been amazing. It keeps getting better every time. I just think it's a blessing to play here in front of the home crowd."