Nov. 30, 2013
TENNESSEE HEAD COACH Holly Warlick
(On playing a 40-minute game)
"We got off to a great start and we changed the line up a little bit. It wasn't anything against her - Cierra played a great game yesterday. I just thought with Mays and her style, and how good she is, for Andraya Carter to start on her. Everybody played so hard, we only had three turnovers in the first half and we've been looking for that."
(On low turnovers)
"We ended up with 11 and at least half of them were trying to get it inside. They were basically just bad passes, trying to get it to the post players down low. We haven't quite mastered that pass yet, so we're going to go back and work on that. I like the pass off of the backboard. We're telling them to get it inside and if there's a weakness in our game, that's it."
(On the players)
"Nia played good. She plays hard. She's surrounded by people that are a little older than her and have a little more experience than her. Izzy (Harrison) got in foul trouble and was upset, but she scored the first few points of the second half so it just wasn't her night regarding foul trouble. (Jasmine Jones) can play well when she puts her mind to it. Jordan (Reynolds) got some great minutes and Jasmine got some great minutes, too."
(On Massengale, Simmons)
"Wow, if (Ariel Massengale) plays like that, we've got a chance. She's just been a great leader for us. (Meighan Simmons) just shoots the ball. Maybe we need to play all of our games in a high school setting. I don't know but we just went to work."
(On Andraya Carter)
"She did a number on Mays especially defensively in the second half. If Mays hadn't have gone to the free throw line so much in the first half, she wouldn't have done much. The defense is looking a lot better. We've learned that the coaches have gotten a little bit smarter, if somebody keeping going off on us, we've got to start face guarding them early. We went in with a game plan thinking that we are going to face guard Mays and take whoever is guarding her, take them out of the equation. We had just a great team effort."
(On Lady Vols for the past four, five years)
"Andraya (Carter) and Jasmine Jones are just great stoppers. Cierra Burdick has been outstanding. Meighan (Simmons) played better tonight. When we put our minds to it and understand, when we play great defense, we are going to get great plays on the offensive end. There wasn't a liability on the defensive end tonight. That's what I've seen in practice so when you get frustrated, how hard these players work, and they get out in the game, we wonder where all of this pressure and aggressiveness go. We've got people that can be stoppers. This is the first Holiday Tournament that the Lady Vols have won since 2005 at the Paradise Jam. That's the first time that we went there. The team played well. I cannot complain one bit. It feels so much better to come away with a win."
(On the rest of the trip in the Bahamas)
"We spent one hour on the beach the other day. They haven't had a chance to enjoy themselves so I hope tomorrow that we will get that chance."
TENNESSEE JUNIOR PG Ariel Massengale
(On the challenge of a tournament)
"It's tough playing great teams back to back. You've got to be mentally tough to do it. This is probably the best shape that I've ever been in in my career. Coach (Warlick) has done a great job pushing us every single day from preseason until now. She challenges us in practice every day and in most cases, it is harder than games."
"When it comes to an assist, I have to give all of the credit to my teammates. Coach Law is constantly telling me "attack mode," and you have to do what the defense gives you. If I'm open, I have to make the shot and if not, I have to attack and make someone commit to me and dump it off to my teammate. I think it's finally clicking together, being able to know what I can do offensively."
"Everyone can block a pass. It's making me hard to guard which makes it harder to guard our team. I completely agree that this is the first game this year that we have played 40 minutes."
"I think player of the game needs to go to Andraya Carter. She did an outstanding job against Keena Mays, who came here averaging 20 points per game and she held her to 12. That's amazing - the coaches are constantly preaching defense to us, so her coming out here and doing a good job on Mays allowed us to do what we like to do. Draya played one of her best defensive games and I'm very proud of her."
"We set the tempo early tonight. We came out with a vengeance and this is one of our first championships that we have been able to play in compared to many that the season is going to bring about to us. We all came out with a mindset that we wanted to dominate. The first four minutes were very important for us."