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Postgame Quotes: Lady Vols 104, C-N 44

Nov. 1, 2012

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Tennessee head coach Holly Warlick
(opening statement)
"I thought that the exhibition game did what we wanted it to do. We wanted to get a lot of people playing time in some different situations, different people playing different positions. We had to play without Ariel (Massengale), and I thought that was good that Andraya (Carter) got us off to a good start. Overall, I was pleased with our freshmen and what they did. Overall, we did some good things but we could be so much better. I was not very happy with us in the first half with our defense. We got into foul trouble, and that's just playing with our feet and not our hands. A lot's going to come from this. We're going to watch the tape. This is a chance to see us on film and get better. We've got so much to do and a short time before we open up the regular season."

(On being out on the court coaching and Pat Summitt being in the stands)

"It hit me when she wasn't there for the pregame. I walked out and saw her sitting behind the bench. Yeah, it was at first very strange, but then I snapped back to it and got to reality and understand what I'm doing and why I'm here. It was different, but it's Tennessee basketball and what I've been doing and what I've been trained to do. I had a little brief moment and then I had to come back to reality."

(On freshmen Jasmine Jones and Bashaara Graves)

"Bashaar had a double-double. Fifteen rebounds and 17 points. I thought at the beginning of the game she was pressing and a little nervous. But Bashaara plays hard, and you have to have some kind of effort if you have 15 rebounds. I tell you, Jasmine Jones does not disappoint me every time I watch her play. She was 6-for-6 and Dean (Lockwood) made the comment that Jasmine hadn't missed a shot, and about that time, she missed one so I blamed him and said he jinxed her. Both those two are athletic and both of them can play multiple positions, and that's what I love about them. I thought their effort was there and they can get so much better. Andraya started the game and didn't have any points but I thought she did good things for us. Nia Moore showed good signs on defense and offensively did some good things as well. That's what I wanted, for the freshmen to get playing time, and that's what they did."

(On any nerves personally before the game)

"Myself? No. I was not. I was just trying to get us in a game-like atmosphere and get ready to play. I think some players were, but I think once the ball went up and we started playing, the nerves went out. I was actually anxious to get the game going and just to get the season started and see where we were. Not so much me coaching, but to see where our team was and where we are and where we need to go."

(On exciting quality of having so many newcomers)

"That's a great question. There is something about newness that I like. We don't have a lot in. We have a man defense in. Normally, we would play zones, we would press, but we don't have everything in right now and that's by design because we're trying to teach these young ladies the fundamentals. They don't have bad habits. When you get new kids, you try to teach them fundamentals and get it right when they get here. That's what we're trying to do. I will say this about the group for the most part: they work hard. That's been my biggest concern: are we going to play hard? I thought tonight at times we would miss a shot and it would effect our defense, and that is something I am trying to get away from. I'm trying to get us to understand that we will make mistakes but we've got to get back and play defense. As long as they play hard and give the effort -- which I think this group does for the most part -- I'm going to be pleased."

(On fouling problem)

"We were playing with our hands and not our feet. We were touching people, and officials -- especially at the beginning of the year -- are watching that. We've got to get better at playing with our feet. Entirely too many fouls. I was trying to figure out who to play. We were getting close to not have people play and close to having people fouling out."

(On wearing out opponents)

"We're going to have to grind it out because we don't have the experience we've had over the last couple of years so we've got to get more out of our defense. We've just got to grind it out. We've got to be in shape. We've got to outwork people. We've got to be better conditioned. We did wear out Carson-Newman and that's what we've got to do to our opponents. We've got to wear them down and keep coming at you, and keep coming at you. And we're not there yet but we'll get there."

(On why Ariel Massengale sat out)

"Ariel was just tender in her Achilles and I just felt like rest would be great for her. Just rest her up for the beginning of the regular season. That was my call and I wanted her to rest and I wanted Andraya to get the opportunity to start and get that experience."

(On getting better shots up)

"Well yeah, I would love to shoot 100 percent. I thought they were bringing the ball down but there are some little things that we have to correct. At least we are in the position to put ourselves in a position to score. We just have to finish."

(On Andraya Carter)

"I think she is trying to get everyone in the right position right now and trying to be what she thinks the best leader at the point guard can be. But I think Andraya understands that she can shoot it and we will address that. But I was just pleased with her leadership and the way she directed the team and she will be an outstanding player for us."

(On the three things she was happy about, the team needed to work on after the game)

"Three things that I was happy with is that we won the basketball game, number one. Two, everybody got a lot of playing time and I was pleased with that. I thought for the most part we played hard. For the things that I wasn't concerned about was that we didn't play hard all the time. Pleased with what we did, but what we didn't do was play hard all the time, way too many fouls, entirely too many fouls and we gave up 12 offensive rebounds, they had 32 rebounds. We can get better on the boards, we can get better defending and obviously we can play out of our mistakes and play hard all the time."

(On the up tempo offense)

"I loved how they pushed the tempo. We just have to do it more often. I want us to score more in the break. I don't want us to have to come down and set up an offense, but I don't want to quick shoot the ball either. I want us to make sure we get a good look out of transition and that is hard to determine and comes with repetition and game practice and preparation."

(On the summer workouts)

"My goal was for them to get in the gym and play the game. Work on what they felt like they needed to work on, get shots up, stay in condition. I didn't have specific goals for them but I wanted to make sure that they worked on their weaknesses and got shots up. I wanted them to play pick up, I didn't want them to just go get in the gym and shoot, I wanted to try and simulate some game like opportunities for them in the summer."

(On tonight's starting lineup)

"No it doesn't, and we will start a different group on Sunday. I am just trying to get a feel for them and what I really want to do is see who plays well together and we are trying to keep up with that and understand who are our best offensive teams, who are our best defensive teams, who doesn't turn it over at crucial times, all of those aspects of what I am looking for and we will start a different line up on Sunday. I am just trying to look for rotation and see who fits in what and realize combinations of who plays together well."

Meighan Simmons
(On shooting the ball)
"For me, I should have given a lot more tonight. In the first half, I didn't shoot as well, and I was a little more patient with my shots in the second half. My teammates were able to continue to hook me up. I feel like there are still some things we need to work on, but today was a good start. It's just the beginning."

(On freshman point guard Andraya Carter's performance)
"I think she did very well. I don't think she played too uptight like a normal freshman would be their first time playing in front of thousands of fans. She did a good job of communicating with us, and overall, she did an amazing job tonight. When Taber and I leave here and Ariel leaves here, she is going to have to step up, and tonight was a good test."

Taber Spani
(On talking to coach Summitt before the game)
"It was something that I thought about before the game. This is the first of many things for a lot of us. I wanted to make sure to go over and honor her, and I will probably end up making a tradition of it every game."

(On the team's effort level)
"I would say it was inconsistent. I think our effort level was there at times and wasn't there at others. I take full responsibility for that. Effort is something that you can give no matter what. You can give effort and play hard no matter how talented you are or how tired you are. We still have a long way to go."

(On coach Summitt not being on the sideline)
Of course, it's going to be different. Different is not necessarily a bad thing; it's just different. This is the first time we have ever had to go through something like this, but I though Holly did a great job. We all believe in her 110 percent. Pat is still pulling for us too no matter where she is at, so it helps that we know that."

Bashaara Graves
(On playing in her first game at UT)
"It was great. I was probably a little nervous before the game, and you could probably tell. I think I cam out and the nervousness went away, and I just played my game."

(On fellow freshman Jasmine Jones's performance)
"Jasmine is a wonderful rebounder. She can finish on contact, which I love. She can do so much in the game and bring a lot to the table."

(On nerves with mother watching her first game)
"I was nervous because of my mom. This was my first game playing here, and I think all of the freshmen were a little nervous before the game tonight. I'm excited my mom got to watch a Lady Vol game for the first time; it was just a wonderful night."

Carson-Newman Head Coach Mike Mincey
(Opening remarks)
"Well as always our annual trip down to Knoxville to play the Lady Vols was another exciting event for our players and for our program. The exposure we get is great, and I'm glad Coach Warlick has allowed us to continue to come down and play. We hope to continue to do this for years to come. After the way we played at Carolina on Sunday, I wasn't real happy certainly only putting 29 points on the board, so coming down here we wanted to try and be more efficient offensively, which I'm still not happy with, but at least we were able to get to the free throw line more and put the ball in the basket. I've got these two here (Peacher and Markus) that were able to be a big part of our 6-of-19 from the three. I'm happy with our performance; I'm happy with our effort. It's kind of hard to believe when you're talking about a 104-44 defeat, but as long as we can kind of hold them within that 100-point range and we can get somewhere near 50, those are always our team goals when we come down here to play one of the best basketball programs in the country."

(On not seeing Pat Summitt on the sideline)
"I knew that was going to be odd. This being my fifth time down here to play against the Lady Vols and not see Coach Summitt down there, but with Coach Warlick I think she's stepping into a very difficult situation. I think she's done a stellar job right. I know they're recruiting like crazy in getting the No. 1 player in the country is amazing, and I know they're going to continue to be Lady Vol basketball like it's always been. She's been here for 27, 28 years talking about Coach Warlick. I expect nothing but the best from the Lady Vols in the future."

(On if he thought about not seeing about Pat Summitt on the other bench)
"Actually what I thought was last year we were the first game for Coach Pat Summitt's last year, and now we're the first game of the Holly Warlick era. I was really kind of worried because I knew they were going to come out, and they'd want a piece of us, and everybody was going to be cheering for them. How are they going to play for Coach Warlick? How hard are they going to play? I think they played hard. I think they played well. When you've got a 6-2 and a 6-3 kid who can shoot it from 15 feet and farther, they're going to be dangerous."

(On comparing this year's Tennessee team to last year's Tennessee team)
"That's a tough question for me. Getting to know some of these newcomers that they have that have come in, this is the first time I've got to see them because quite honestly we don't recruit the same players, so I don't get to see them on the road as much. I think this year I can see, not that they didn't have a fight or a spirit about them last year, but you can kind of see that they want to do well for Coach Warlick. I think they have her back. I think you're going to see a lot of good things out of the Lady Vols this year."

Carson-Newman Senior Courdine Miles

(on learning from these exhibitions)
"As a senior I feel like I came down here, this is my fourth year coming to UT, and we come here, and this is the toughest competition we'll play all year. So, it's like you get into these games, and you get exposed on stuff that you need to work on. This is our building point throughout the year to get better because we won't see this competition anywhere else."

Carson-Newman Sophomore Lashawnda Peacher

(on being from Tennessee, playing on this floor)
"It was always a dream. Pat Summitt was one of the main reasons why I even played basketball because she started recruiting two of my favorite players in Tamika Catchings and Candace Parker. As I watched them, I started to love watching them play, and then I started playing myself. When I was in high school, my coach offered us to come over and watch a Vanderbilt and Tennessee game, and everybody was in there for Vanderbilt, and I was screaming for Tennessee. They said, `What are you doing?' I said I'm a Tennessean by heart. They were like, `Well, Vanderbilt's in Tennessee.' I'm like no, Tennessee is Lady Vols' base. It was amazing. It was the best feeling ever."

 

 

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