Postgame Quotes: Tennessee 79, Georgia 66

Jan. 6, 2013

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(Opening Statement)
"Can we play a first half? We get ourselves in a hole, but I was really proud of our effort and us coming back in the second half (of the first half), cutting the lead. Then, playing like we know we should play the second half. I thought in the first half we gave up too many offensive rebounds, we didn't finish our defense and we weren't running the basketball. That has a lot to do with Georgia, they were attacking the glass and then getting back to stop our fast break. I'm very proud of our team, that's a great win for us, an SEC win. We'll take it and be excited about it and the last two games."

(On the schedule)
"When you look at our schedule, before we started, I think every game concerned me. Opening up, our first three out of four games were on the road. Then when you go into the SEC, you go on the road to South Carolina, which has been a very difficult place for us to play, then come home and play a Georgia team that has been ranked above you all year, you get a little nervous. But you have to keep your kids focused, they don't feel what the coaches feel. We get them to play a game and we just want them to compete. Honestly, I'm glad those two games are over."

(On adjustments at halftime)
"I told you I bottled up what we did at South Carolina and it was a big bottle. I opened it up a little bit today. You just challenge them. When they're not playing the way I know they can play, you motivate them, so I motivated them a certain way and challenged them."

(On playing well in second halves)
"I would really like us to play a 40-minute game, for us to start off a lot better. As a coach, it's about finishing the job, getting the job done. It's not how you start, but how you finish, but I would like to come out of the gates a little faster. This team doesn't give up, and as a coach you're excited about that. We got down, but we came back. I love that from us."

(On Jasmine Jones)
"Today, you saw the Jasmine Jones that we know can play. I told her after the game that she's an X-factor for us. She's athletic, she shoots the ball well, she's a great rebounder and she's a great defender. I think today, she finally got comfortable in the game. I think in other games, she got into a little bit of foul trouble and we had to pull her, she never got into a rhythm. Today, I thought she played smart, she got huge rebounds for us, hit big baskets for us and that's what we expect from JJ. That's what we expect from her, that or better. We will not accept anything under that.

"I think it's a matter of her getting comfortable. We know she can do it and we've been tough on her. I think her mom has been a little tough on her as well, but it's tough love. Now that's she's shown everybody what she can do, we're holding her accountable for how she played today."

(On the pace of the game)
"The pace of the game, that's how we really like to play. I thought in the first half Georgia was controlling us and they scored a lot off of baskets in transition, so we talked about that at the half. We picked up our tempo in the second half. We have a lot of athletes that love to run, so that's what we're trying to do. We're trying to be a great defensive team that scores easily in transition."

(On Bashaara Graves stepping into Glory Johnson's role)
"I knew Basharra was a very good player, but I didn't know we would get the productivity out of her and her durability. She just goes about her business and plays the game like it should be played. There's not a lot of flash to her game, she just goes to work. I think she has a little Glory (Johnson) in her as far as getting on the block and going to work." "I was concerned when Andraya (Carter)went out on how we were going to replace that leadership on the court and I think Massengale picked that up. Then when Cierra Burdick went out, I was a little concerned too, but I think that has allowed Taber to step up and do some things and get into a flow. I think you can see that players are getting to the point where they don't think they automatically have to come in and do something and you're seeing the result of that."

(On closing the game with a shorter lineup)
"It's extremely reassuring for me that this team is going to fight until the game's over. They don't give up. They listen to coaching, to listen to what we have to say, and I thought the staff today was huge in our success. While I was up coaching the game, they're back coaching these kids. This team is very good at taking the information that we give them and using it out on the court. There's a couple of times today that I drew up things that we haven't run before and they went out and executed. That's a sign of people being in-tune to what you want and going out and doing it on the floor. Down the road, that's going to make us a better team."

(On responding to a Georgia run in the second half)
"I wasn't happy that we gave up a seven-point lead, but I don't think we panicked. They cut it to two, but Meighan always seems to hit those shots for us, and I thought she did today We needed a rebound or a put-back and we got it. What I'm most excited about is that we needed a stop and we went down and got it, we didn't do that the first half. The second half, we needed stops and we got them and turned them into points. When you preach that and we do it, it's exciting for a coach to see that."


(On coming back after South Carolina game)
"I was a little sick, but I didn't want that to be an excuse of how I played. I knew I was going to come out here and try to do my best."

(On close scores at halftime and runaways in the second half)
"It's very good, but we need to have that at the beginning of the game like we did at halftime. Just coming out with a bang and getting the win. We need to play like we know we can all the time."

(On Jasmine's pass to her in the second half)
"I'm so happy. I've been waiting for this for the longest time. I know how good she is and what she can do, so I know this game boosted her confidence a lot. I'm going to expect a lot for the rest of the games."

(On playing 30+ minutes)
"I think we're fresh at the end. The conditioning is coming back for us. We're in great condition. We're running the ball like we want and getting what we want from offense and defense."


(On confidence)
"It helps a lot. I haven't been playing to the best of my ability, so to come out here with the encouragement of everybody else helped me believe in myself as much as everybody else does."

(On creating expectations for greatness)
"Holly told me in the locker room. She said, 'There's no going back.'"

(On the helpfulness of crowd noise)
"It helps a lot. When we get defensive stops, it boosts all of our confidences. When we get a steal, the crowd goes crazy. It comes back to help us."


(On Jasmine's athletic play in the paint)
"Jasmine is so athletic. She reminds people of a mini-Glory with her athleticism and leaping ability. She played with confidence today and bothered their guards out front. She went to the boards and her drives are fantastic. We're really proud of her, and we believe that she can give it to us every single game."

(On change in the second half)
"Really, it was our boxing them out and rebounding. They had ten offensive boards in the first half and we limited them to two in the second. When we could get stops and gets board and get out on the break and limit their easy points was a huge key for us."

(On zone)
"It is just another look, and we played a little 2-3 and a little 3-2. We just tried to mix it up and use our length and athleticism. Like South Carolina, they were great penetrators, especially Jasmine James. She was really getting into our paint so we tried to clog it up."

(On how much of a test this is)
"It was huge. Give Georgia a lot of credit; we respect them a lot. I think they were number 10. They're a great team, and we needed every person that we had-all nine people-the people who came off the bench and the people who played any minutes, we counted on them."

(On getting used to the game at the start)
"They want to play in transition the way we want to. They push it every time. Obviously, Jasmine was pushing on every play. It was a good test for us. It took us a while to figure out how to stop their point guard. We stressed that at halftime and fixed it in the second half."

(On crowd involvement)
"It's definitely a rivalry game for us. They had three Tennessee girls on their team so they wanted to come back, I'm sure. It's a great environment to play in. It was a great test for us; we need to keep battles against SEC teams. I'm glad we could pull it out."


(Opening remarks)
"It was a game from our perspective probably as one team was able to play two halves of offense, and the other who would be us only was able to play one. I thought that first half offensively both teams played very, very well in spite of how the other team was trying to defend them. I thought both teams really stayed the course and made plays and made shots and created an offensive game. Second half Tennessee continued to do that. We got a lot of shots. We opened the second half by missing two layups and missed a lot of shots. We didn't keep pace with them offensively and then on the other end of the floor defensively couldn't get them slowed down. The rebounding: we're up two at the half and getting drilled, plastered on the boards in the second half."

(On hoping to wear down Tennessee with the Bulldogs' depth)
"I watched them enough on tape. I don't think that I ever mentioned anything like that to the players. I never really thought anything like that, but I think the thing that we're enjoying about our depth is that it lets us play hard. That's kind of our focus with it. We can't control whether someone else gets tired or doesn't and sure don't want to spend a lot of time and a whole lot faith in our guess work on that because if we're wrong, we're really messed up. We watched them play on tape; they seemed to have energy."

(On being surprised about Jasmine Jones' scoring output today)
"I think it's a reflection of how poorly we played inside defensively. You had two freshmen (Bashaara Graves and Jones) there that had career days today. We weren't very good defensively. We weren't very good rebounding the basketball. There it is."


(On the first half being close and the second half not, how Tennessee slipped away)
"I think Tennessee did a really good job in the second half of taking shots that they really wanted to take within their offense. We didn't do a really good job of setting up our offense and executing the way that we usually would like to, and shots that we typically make we just didn't make. Sometimes it just happens that way. It was just one of those nights for us in the second half."

(On having several players from the state of Tennessee playing for both Georgia and Tennessee, if that enhances the rivalry)
"I'll say that made it an exciting game, but when you look back at the tradition, Georgia and Tennessee in any year is really an exciting game. That's just something we look forward to."

(On if Georgia's missed shots in the second half affected Georgia's defense)
"One of the things we try not to do is try not to let our offense affect our defense, but I think that it's quite possible that that did affect our defense. It's kind of hard when you're not really executing and scoring on the offensive end time after time again and come back down to the defensive end and constantly have that motivation to get after it when they're constantly scoring as well."


(On if Georgia was purposely running with Tennessee in transition constantly to speed up the game)
"Before the game we just tried to focus on executing. That was the main thing we do: execute offensively and to stop them on the defensive end. I think that's what we focused mostly on doing. I think we let them beat us up in the second half. They got momentum on us, and we weren't making the shots we needed to make."





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