Sept. 30, 2012
HEAD COACH Sinisa Momic
On the team's slow start and the eventual win
"It was a very slow, very bad start. Nobody showed up. We had to stress to them that they can't represent the school like this. They responded in game two. I thought they played well. Then down the stretch, we just tried to find a way to fix the things that didn't work. From Azarri, we went to Milena at the libero, to pulling Cori out and putting Azarri back in as an outside. In game four, she was the deciding factor and I think she had three or four kills in a row. We found a way. They all responded well when they were called on to play, sometimes in positions they haven't played in months. Chemistry changed in games four and five. Everyone responded, they kept fighting and we got a win."
On team getting an early lead in the fifth set and never letting up
"We found a way, but the most important thing is we stopped making unforced errors - mostly things like hitting the ball into the block or hitting it out. Even if we didn't score, we tried to work the ball around the block and make the defense dig us if they can. Azarri was a good example in game four. She kept pushing the ball deep or on top of the block. Whatever. Just as long as you don't make a mistake. That was the difference. We didn't make those two or three or four errors, and we stopped UAB mostly from the right pin. We got momentum into game five, we didn't start game five with unforced errors. We got an early lead and kept it until the end."
On if today's come-back win can be the type of match that changes the way the team plays from here on out
"We hope so. We just mentioned that to the players. This has to be a difference. This has to be a difference and we have to learn from this. As coaches, we see some other options that we haven't explored yet. We're going to use it if it works."
On the performance of Azarri Badawi
"Azarri stepped up to play a position she hasn't played. She's working very hard at it every day. She has bad days and she has good days. But as she proved today, she can turn a bad match into a good match and decide the win. I really think she's worked harder in practice now than she ever has, and it paid off today."
On her mindset after being removed as the libero in the opening set and coming on late as an outside hitter
"When they took me out, I felt that I knew that I was struggling. I saw Milena step up and I was excited to see her come in and do that. To go back in as an outside, I was shocked. I haven't jumped in a month and a half since I started playing libero. To get back into the groove was nice."
On how the team battled back from a 2-1 deficit
"It was like a different team today. It was fun. The word in the locker room right now is fun. That was a game that we were focused and we were into it, but we were having fun. We weren't worried about making mistakes or losing. We just wanted to win and work with each other. It was such a different mindset than even the first two games to come out and work like that for the last two."
On if today's come-from-behind win can be a turning point for the team this year
"I think it can be. If we remember this game every time we step on the court and we remember what it's like to have fun, win and play for each other, I think this can turn the season around."