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TENNESSEE 94 - WESTERN CAROLINA 43



March 21, 2005

Recap |  Box Score |  Notes


University of Tennessee Notes

First-seeded Tennessee improves to 26-4 on the season.

The Lady Vols have compiled an 86-17 record in their 24 trips to the NCAA tournament and are the only team to have played in tournament. Tennessee has won 45 consecutive NCAA tournament games in Knoxville, including 32 in Thompson-Boling Arena (TBA). Their streak increases to 50 games when taking into account contests in the AIAW tournament.

Tennessee's 62 points in the first half was just shy of the TBA record. UT scored 63 against Old Dominion in the first half on Jan. 3, 2000.

Tennessee's 11 3-pointers set a school record in NCAA tournament games, eclipsing the nine the Lady Vols made against DePaul in the second round on Mar. 22, 2004.

Shanna Zolman's shooting exhibition set or tied several records. Her five 3-pointers is a UT record in NCAA games. Three people had made four in an NCAA game, including Zolman and Western Carolina head coach Kellie Harper. Zolman's 28 points is a personal record in the NCAA tournament and ties her season and career high that she established against Florida on Feb. 3, 2005.

Zolman has scored in double figures in six of her past seven tournament games. She has now hit 19 3-pointers in 13 career tournament games, and she is shooting .463 from behind the arc in NCAA tournament games.

Tennessee Head Coach Pat Summitt

(opening statement) "Obviously, Shanna (Zolman) had a great shooting night. I give the glasses (glasses received as a team focus award) full credit. It obviously had an influence on her focus. She sees the target much better (with the glasses). I thought we played great in the first half. We did a great job of controlling the tempo, dominating the glass, and shooting well. We went inside and followed our gameplan. We had a commitment on the part of our team. We got all nine people involved. We wanted to get them quality minutes. We'll need all nine players during the tournament. I'm proud of our basketball team. It was a good indicator that we shot as well as we did."

 

 

(on what Kellie Harper did in her first year as a head coach) "I'm not sure I could have done that. It speaks well for her ability in her first year (as a head coach) to get off to a slow start then have a strong finish. I'm proud of her. I think she knows that. To get a standing ovation, I think she knows that people appreciate not only what she did at Western Carolina this year, but also what she did during the four years during her career here."

(on Western Carolina's performance) "They came at us. They competed hard. Their one-on-one offense caused us to break down defensively. We did not contain the dribble drive. I think that's Kellie's (Harper) personality, to play aggressively. While I'm sure that she was not pleased with their total points, I'm sure she was pleased with how they played and fought. They did a good job against us, getting seven offensive rebounds in the first half. We created points off turnovers. Give them credit. They got 16 offensive rebounds on us, fighting hard on the glass."

(on Dean Smith's record) "After the game, the team congratulated me. I said, 'Thank you'. They asked if I was looking forward to breaking the record. I said, 'Yes. I want your help to get this over with only because that means that we're going to Philadelphia.' When I think about the record, it's not about the numbers. It's about the people, the administration, the assistant coaches who have been loyal, the people who work in the office, and the players. When I think about relationships, I think about my family-(husband) R.B. and (son) Tyler and my mom and dad. I wouldn't have been able to go to college without their support because they didn't give scholarships then. I've really been blessed to be in one place for 31 years. I'm not the easiest person to get along with. The administration has tolerated me for 31 years."

Shanna Zolman

(on the oversized, orange-tinted glasses that she wore into the interview room) "Each year, the (graduate assistant) coaches come up with a theme for us in the postseason. They do a video for each step (of the postseason). The main focus this year is 'Who wants to be a champion?' playing off of 'Who wants to be a millionaire?'. There are three separate awards for attitude, focus, and the person who kept us together the best. I got the glasses for my focus."

(on being an Indiana native and playing Purdue) "I'm excited. It will be great just to play against old AAU teammates and players from high school rivalries. These are players I played with growing up. Shyra (Ely) grew up 45 minutes from Purdue. It's exciting."

(on her shooting performance) "Tonight, I could just feel it. My teammates were finding me. I got a lot of great looks and was able to knock it down. I wanted to try keeping in rhythm. I hope I can take it into the next games. It's a mindset we carried in from the SEC Tournament."

Shyra Ely

(on being an Indiana native and playing Purdue) "During recruiting, my two choices came down to these two teams (Tennessee and Purdue). I always wanted the chance to play them."

(on Tennessee's offensive performance) "We worked well together tonight. Shanna (Zolman) and Brittany (Jackson) and our perimeter players were hitting pretty well, and that opened up the inside. With the glasses, it was only natural that Shanna would shoot like that. We were taking what the defense gave us."

(on Coach Pat Summitt tying Dean Smith's Division I record of 879 wins) "We're aware of it. I think it's awesome. We're glad to be a part of it. It's huge, not only for women's basketball but for college basketball. No way does it define her career or legacy. It's awesome."


Western Carolina University Notes

Sixteenth-seeded Western Carolina finishes its season at 18-14.

The Lady Catamounts made their first-ever NCAA tournament appearance, doing so in head coach Kellie Harper's first season.

This was one of Harper's few losses in Thompson-Boling Arena. As a Lady Vol from the 1995-96 season to the 1998-99 season, Kellie Jolly led UT to a 58-3 record in TBA.

In 10 seasons involved in college basketball as a player, an assistant coach, and now a head coach, Harper has been to the Big Dance nine times. Her only miss was in her second season as an assistant coach at Auburn University in 2001.

Western Carolina was held to a season-low 43 points on 16 of 62 shooting from the field and 9 of 15 from the charity stripe.

Western Carolina is one of at least four teams in the NCAA tournament-and one of two at this site-that have a married couple on the coaching staff. Western Carolina's head coach Kellie Harper and assistant coach Jon Harper are married, as are Purdue head coach Kristy Curry and assistant Kelly Curry. In the Kansas City regional, Southern Cal assistants Jody and Derrick Wynn are married, as are Liberty assistant Kelley Deyo and graduate assistant Adam Deyo at the Chattanooga regional.

Head Coach Kellie Harper

(opening statement) "First of all, I would like to say how proud I am of this team. What this team has accomplished this year with winning the conference championship, they have nothing to hang their heads down about. You don't want to ever see it end. We have enjoyed the run, and you don't want to see it end. We ran upon one of if not the best teams in the country tonight. I thought our kids showed heart, and they played hard. At times there is not much you can do when you are playing against a superior team. And tonight Tennessee looked very tough."

(on what she thinks Coach Summitt means to the game and tying Coach Dean Smith's record) "Pat Summitt is huge for the game of women's basketball. She is a pioneer, a legacy, a legend and all of those adjectives. And now her tying Dean Smith allows her legacy to move over to basketball, not just women's basketball. And I think a person like Pat Summitt needs to be a legend in the game of basketball."

(on what it meant for her to walk out to a crowd that gave her a standing ovation) "It was emotional. To get a standing ovation from your alma mater, in front of a lot of friends and your family, once you are a Lady Vol you are always a Lady Vol. It was incredible and it brought back a lot of memories. It let's me know I am always welcome here in Knoxville."

(on her thoughts about Coach Summitt and the impact on her) "When you have somebody like Pat Summitt motivating you, encouraging you, you know she was instrumental in my taking the position at Western Carolina. And I spoke with her the other day and she asked me if I made the right decision in taking the job at Western Carolina. I told he it was the best decision I had made in my life."

(on her thoughts about how her team performed the second half of the season) "This team has showed a ton of courage and strength this season. The thing I am most impressed about is how much we improved as a team, and how individuals stepped up and took it upon themselves to get better and make our team better. They made a commitment and bought into what we are trying to do. I cannot say enough about how proud I am of how they represented our university. What they have done to put this program on the map. They have gotten a lot of attention and I am proud because they have deserved that attention. I am glad they got a chance to play in this type of atmosphere. I told them I couldn't wait for them to play in front this crowd. I know they are going to be yelling for the other team, but playing in front of a crowd of 10,000 plus is not something a lot of young ladies can say they have ever done. Just to be in this situation is remarkable, and I always want them to have special memories of their time at Western. The last couple of weeks are something I will never forget."

Jennifer Gardner

(on her thoughts about what impact she has left on the Western Carolina program) "I think it is a good stepping stone to leave behind. We have some good freshmen, sophomores and juniors who can hopefully carry on the tradition that we have started. Hopefully, this program is going to go nowhere but up and it will be fun to come back and watch every year."

(on what it meant for them to be a part of a record-setting game for Coach Pat Summitt) "You hate to be on losing side, but at the same time it shows a big improvement for Western Carolina to be in this position to play in the NCAA Tournament."

Ki-Ki Glass

(on her thoughts about what impact she has left on the Western Carolina program) "A lot of people talk about us and how we have built a program at WCU, and that's the biggest memory I am going to take with me. When we started out we weren't winning as many games, and we weren't going to conference championships. We were getting knocked out in the first round. Now we have a conference championship and we were playing in the NCAA Tournament. So we have done wonders, and I am very proud right now."

(on what it meant for them to be a part of a record-setting game for Coach Pat Summitt) "You hate to be on losing side of the record books, but it is nice, I guess, to be part of Tennessee's history."

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