Postgame Quotes: No. 9 Tennessee 84, Missouri 39

Jan. 10, 2013

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HEAD COACH Holly Warlick

(Opening statement)
"Well, I'm pleased with the win. Any time that you get a win, especially to hold Missouri to only scoring nine threes, that's exciting for us because we seem to give up threes. It's a great win for us. I'm proud of our kids but a lot of things I'm talking as a coach that we have to get better. We gave them too many open looks on the three. Those are things we've got to correct. So great effort. I thought our first half was better than our second half, so if we can ever put the two together and play it consistent, then we'll play a complete 40-minute game. Excited for our kids and proud of them for getting another SEC win."

(On if team lost interest late in the first half)
"I think at times we did. I think we tried to emphasize this: Missouri's never out of a game because of their ability to shoot threes. If we did get disinterested, that's when we really them hard in the huddles. I thought in the second half we let up and by know means was I talking to run up the score but I just want us to play hard all the time. Regardless of who your playing, our effort has to be consistent. With a team like Missouri, I don't think they're ever out of a game. From that standpoint, a couple of series I was disappointed with us."

(On balanced scoring attack)
"I love us to have balanced scoring. I don't want us to rely on just a Meighan Simmons. Or Bashaara (Graves). I want us to be able to score the basketball. That makes us difficult to defend. If somebody has an off night, we know somebody can step in and take up the slack. When you look down and see four people in double figures, that's awesome for us."

(On Graves and Harrison's consistent contributions)
"We want to go inside and have a lot of confidence in those two. They're kind of our rock inside. They play solid. They play hard. Not too often do they take bad shots. Now, they didn't shoot 100 percent, but the looks they had, I want them to take because they do their work before the ball gets there and I have a lot of confidence in them and how they play inside."

(On jumping out early on offense)
"Yeah, we did. We got the ball inside and we took good shots. I thought they would come out and run us 2-3, so we planned ahead for that. I thought we took really good looks and we moved the ball and we didn't quick-shoot the basketball and we made them work on defense. I'm very pleased. We got the ball inside, and for us to get the ball inside, that's big for us when we can get looks and get a little two-foot shot."

(On Kamiko Williams' athleticism)
"I think she's been really consistent in our last three games. And we do need her solid like that. She can be a great defender for us. A great rebounder. She's scoring the basketball. I didn't even see what Kamiko did -- 3-for-5 and I think she hit a three. Nine points in 19 minutes is pretty good. I like how she's playing. I like how hard she's playing and even more, I like how she's being consistent."

(On Kamiko Williams)
"I think she's been really consistent the last three games. We need her solid like that. She can be a great defender for us, a great rebounder, and she's scoring the basketball. I didn't even look to see what Kamiko did; she was three for five, and I think she hit a three. Yeah, so I think nine points in nineteen minutes is pretty good. I like how she's playing, like how hard she's playing, and probably more important I like how she's being consistent."

(On first ten minutes of game)
"After the game, I went in and I was very happy and pleased with the result. As a coach, we want to dissect everything. So I guess we do nit-pick little things but the bottom line is did you win. Absolutely we won but can we get better, absolutely. So as a coach it's up to me to try to play a perfect game. So we do get on for the smallest things because I think eventually it will come back to get you. So it may not get us in the game you're ahead, but when you're battling and the game is tight, the things we did defensively are going to come back and get us."

(On importance of building experience)
"Well I think Robin (Pingeton), she is an outstanding coach. You take and you use your talent, and I think she is using her talent very very well. Very well coached, they're hard to defend, run a motion offense; after the game I was already thinking we got to go up there and play. You know I was already thinking that. I think she is taking her talent and getting the absolute most out of her talent, and that's a sign. I have so much respect for her, what she's done in past places and is going to be a great coach at Missouri. She has them playing extremely hard and with confidence."

(On Missouri shooting)
"Well I think John, it was a combination both. I think we were having them rush their shots, but then again in the second half I thought they were getting open looks. I don't know if they were tired or quit shooting the basketball. We watched a lot of tape on them, and they could shoot the basketball. They don't have to get set; I'm so impressed with them catching and shooting, to the point of us getting really really concerned about it. So I hope our defense had something to do with it, I hope our pressure had something to do with kind of wearing them down as well."

(On preparation for Missouri)
"First thing we talked about to begin practice, very first thing we talked about was and I told them again before the game and I told them again before the game, you have a young lady that went eleven for eighteen . I said do you think Auburn... they practiced for the three and knew Missouri was going to shoot the three. You may know it, but it's up to you to stop it. Auburn just at times couldn't stop it and our number one concern was their three point shooting; because you have a team that shoots the three ball the way they do, they're never out of the game. So that was our number one priority, to not let them shoot the three ball the way they do."

JUNIOR G Meighan Simmons

(On Missouri)
"It kind of is, but it's the SEC, so every team is playing on tempo. I think today was a good test of how we were going to make adjustments as far as the teams that could actually shoot the ball and shoot the ball very well, better yet forty-six percent from the arc, so I think it's a good test to see how our defense was today, so it was really good."

(On Tennessee defense)
"I feel like in the first half, I think our defense really affected them and slowed them down and it didn't allow them to get into their sets as much as they usually do with other opponents. In the second half, I really think they were just missing a lot of their shots. I feel like we could have, we got in a little slump after awhile, but we kind of picked it up at the end, but we have to be consistent throughout the whole game."

(On Morgan Eye)
"Not even just Morgan in general. Their eight screens in one set, we have never experienced that. Ya'll can agree. We have never experienced that. I think that's like I said, it just tests our defense and how well we can play a defense for thirty seconds on the clock and like I said, make sure we stay consistent and everybody is just doing their part out there. They're playing every position, every person is playing the right way, and getting into their groove.

(On the first ten minutes)
"To be honest with you, I think we can play like that the entire game. It just has to be something that comes from within us. The coaches try to get on us all the time and say that we have the talent and the physical ability to actually do that for forty minutes straight and I think like I said it, it just has to come from within us and you have to be consistent. We play like that for the rest of the time and SEC, we're going to do some really good things and even coming up in the tournament as well."

(On the game's pace)
"Me, personally, I love it. I just love that kind of play. I love up and down, being able to get a steal and keep going. Like me, they consider me the energizer bunny and that's what I feed off of is quick games like that just going up and down. I think that actually it brings out our strengths, which is actually running up and down the floor, getting points in transition. Rashaara, Izzie and all the other post players, like sealing it and getting and ones and that's something we need to do more often."

FRESHMAN F/C Bashaara Graves

(On Missouri defense)
"Yes, it was kind of difficult. We went over it in practice. I was just struggling a little bit, but I think we adjusted to it very well."

(On Jasmine Jones)
"I think it helps us a lot. It gives the post and other guards a little break because she plays post and then she plays the guard. Her points from when she comes off the bench, it helps a lot."

SOPHOMORE C Isabelle Harrison

(On her defense)
"I loved it. I always enjoy what it looks like from the other side, so it looked pretty good. I was pretty proud. It was nice."

(On maintain the game)
"Well I think no matter what, the outcome or what the scoreboard is, I think we always have to play hard, especially on the defensive end, and that's something I feel like we could've done a little bit better in the second half and not let up no matter what the score is. We just have to not let things like that get to us."

(On herself)
"Definitely and that always will. Our ball pressure from our guards , that we really dedicated our practice knowing that we had to get through screens, know who the shooters were, and then the guards started off going through the screens and I feel like it really helped us out and it really counted down on the shot clock, so it helped us tremendously to get that huge start at the beginning.

(On Missouri three point shots)
"We knew that they were three point shooters, so we definitely wanted to take that away from them, and then I feel like once we really got down to that, they tried to come inside and we're such a presence in there, it affects their shots, so I think we just did a really good job of defending the three early in the first half."

(On height)
"We take advantage of the post a lot when it comes to teams like that. It helps a lot on our post game and also when they're trying to double down, we have those great guards on the outside so I just think any aspect when it comes to the game, we can show up."



(On shots not falling early for the Tigers and the loud home crowd for Tennessee)
"I have so much respect for what you guys do here at Tennessee and the fan support that you guys have. You have a great program, great tradition here. Probably would be better to ask the players that question since they're the ones out there playing, but, man, when you don't knock down shots, it makes for a long night. That's for sure."

(On why Missouri couldn't score much inside)
"I just felt like we played without poise. It just felt like we played panicky at times. Absolutely give Tennessee a lot of credit. They're a great team. They have some great athletes. They're long. They're lanky. They're a great team, and I do feel like we had some open looks. We just played a little bit panicky on offense. I think the shots, we've knocked down shots in the past and will knock down in the future."

(On Missouri's defense being better in the second half than the first)
"No question. It felt that way. It felt like it was a little bit better in the second half. They shot the ball well in the first half, and we kind of changed up a few things. Second half I felt like we played a little bit better than we did in the first."

(On Tennessee hitting a lot of shots, Missouri not and getting flustered)
"They sure were. (laughter) I don't think we were flustered. ... We're really inexperienced. We don't have any high school All-American freshmen on our team. We're trying to build a foundation. It just takes time. Every opportunity that we get we've got to learn from it. There's a lot of teachable moments, a lot of lessons that can be learned."


(On Tennessee focusing defense on her)
"I felt that I had a few girls chasing me hard off screens, and my teammates did a good job to just keep screening me. I still got some pretty good looks; I felt like, and I credit my teammates for that."

(On changing conferences, going to new places to play)
"It is really hard. I know being in the BIG XII last year you kind of get a feel for how the teams are. I know the coaches will say the same. They have to scout a bunch of different teams this year, and we're getting used to a different style of play here in the SEC."

(On her three-point makes giving Missouri some momentum)
"Yeah, absolutely. The second half we knew that we were down, but we wanted to come back. It was about us. We wanted to play our game and get better. It was more about us than the scoreboard."


(On the crowd tonight, not hitting shots early)
"I think the crowd was great tonight. We just have to knock down shots, and I think that's something that our team is capable of doing."

(On learning the SEC as you go along)
"I think the SEC is way different than the BIG XII in the style of play that each team brings."

(On how the SEC is so different)
"I think just the way that each team plays. I think it's a lot more driving and faster pace. I'm not sure."

(On getting momentum early in the second half to try and cut the deficit)
"I think it's important because it gets our team going, and just being down we want to get that momentum to catch back up."





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