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Baylor, West Virginia Postgame Quotes

March 22, 2011

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MARCH 22, 2011 • ATTENDANCE: 8,436

 Head Coach Kim Mulkey

On the team's response to Brittney Griner picking up two early fouls:
"We haven't had Brittney in foul trouble very often, and I don't know that I would call her being in "foul trouble" with two fouls. I could have kept her out there. I am just that confident that she won't pick up another foul. I think she went out with the lead at 11 or 12 points and I don't think (West Virginia) really cut into the lead. I guess those that don't have names can play."

On her message to the team when the game got close:
"(West Virginia) has five or six seniors, with a couple of them being fifth-year seniors. They had a real sense of urgency. When you're a senior, you realize that the playoffs are do or die. We only had the one senior on the floor. I just thought we withstood a lot of their runs. I just kept reminding them that they are seniors and they aren't going to go away. We were in control for the most part. I thought we scored pretty easily against them, and they are one of the better defensive teams not only in the Big 12 but in the country."

On the play of Brooklyn Pope, Odyssey Sims and Destiny Williams:
"They are all going home. They are all excited about going back and playing in front of their families. I thought Brooklyn did some good things out there. I thought she gave us some energy. I thought especially when Griner got in foul trouble, she just really helped us keep them off the boards. A key coming into the game was not allowing West Virginia to get second and third opportunities to score. I thought at halftime that we had done an outstanding job of not allowing them to get offensive boards. If you look at the final, they have them down with ten, (offensive rebounds) but truly it was seven. If you hold a team to seven offensive boards when they had 25 against Houston, I thought that we really listened to the scouting report and really kept them off of the boards. I thought it was a very physical game. I just thought everybody did something good tonight. I thought the fans were outstanding. I thought the students showed up. Don't ever take a Sweet 16 for granted. I remember the first Sweet 16 this program ever went to in Albuquerque, New Mexico and how excited we were. And while we are excited about this Sweet 16 appearance, this team has a bigger goal in mind. And we don't take these things for granted. This team has a bigger mission and a bigger goal. We get to stay close to home again."

On Green Bay-Wisconsin:
"I know that they have only lost one basketball game and I know that they have beaten some good teams. I haven't watched a lot of film on them, but we will. We will take tomorrow off and get ready to head to Dallas on Friday night or Saturday morning. When someone has only lost one game, that gets your attention."

On making it to the Sweet 16:
"It means a lot to our school, it means a lot to our program. It helps with recruiting. Some coaches coach a lifetime and never make it to a Sweet 16. Some players play and don't ever get there. I want the players to enjoy it. I like their mindset in that we've been here now and some of us have been to a Final Four and got a little taste of that. They want to get back there. It's kind of like a business approach right now with this team, and I like that. I want them to enjoy it and have fun. We will rest tomorrow and get back to work on Thursday."

On the moment with Melissa Jones after pulling her from the game:
"Before the game, the trainer told me good news that something was going on with MJ's eye. We always say if there is change and something going on then it is positive. I spoke to the team prior to the game and told them that the day would come when they are seniors and they will play their last game at home. Don't let this be Melissa and Whitney's (Zachariason) last game on their home floor and motivated them in that way. When she came off the floor I just thanked her for what she means to the program and what she means to me, personally. I wanted the fans to acknowledge her."

 Sophomore Post Brittney Griner

On sense of urgency when West Virginia cut lead to seven in second half:
"Yes, you could say there was a sense of urgency. We knew that they weren't going away with five seniors on the team, because nobody wants it to be over and we knew they were going to make a run."

On difficulty of sitting on the bench after picking up quick second foul in the first half:
"It was hard sitting on the bench, but my team did great and they held it. I knew I needed to come back in the second half and help out my team."

On teams that are not afraid to come inside and attack her offensively:
"I like teams that don't shy from coming in and continuing to play their game. If they want to drive, they're going to drive, so I have a lot of respect for teams and players that keep coming no matter if I block it or alter it."

 Senior Guard Melissa Jones

On final home game in Baylor career and reflecting on four years at Baylor:
"It's hard to describe it all in a brief moment, but it's a great experience, and what a way to end this season and the career at home with a win like this. The girls had a tremendous amount of effort and we played a great basketball team and that made it a great game."

On impact of Brittney Griner in the game:
"You can just sit back in a chair and eat popcorn every time you watch Brittney Griner, because she does so many things that not many people are capable of doing. We are so blessed to have her on our team and not on anybody else's and it's a privilege to play with her."

On impact of fans on tonight's game:
"We had a jaw-dropping amount of fans that came to the game tonight and that spoke volumes to show how supportive the fans are here in Waco. I just can't thank them enough for who they are as people not just fans and that's just so heartwarming to know that you have a family here at Baylor and you always will. I love it and I love everybody that cares about this team and this program."

Importance of maintaining double digit lead with Griner on bench with two fouls in first half:
"The girls had a great amount of effort and we had a lot of success coming from our bench players too tonight. Everyone contributed in a good way and I think that spoke volumes for the production tonight. The girls did a good job."

 Freshman Guard Odyssey Sims

On the support of the fans:
"The fans supported us very well since day one. They do a very good job of supporting us, and they know when it's critical to get loud and get us into it. We love them. That's something we needed being at home when it was getting close, and they got us back into it and got us more energized."

On going back to Dallas and impact of Melissa Jones on the team:
"It means a lot to know that we're still going to have a lot of fans. Baylor fans love us and they'll be there. I have a lot of family there and there's going to be a lot of support. There's going to be a lot of fans and it's just going to be another game like tonight. As far as being under Melissa Jones, I think she's a great captain and she leads the team the very well along with BG. They just do a very good job as far as lifting us up in practice when everybody's tired and doing the little things that matter the most."

On trying to get back into the offensive flow:
"I just knew that once they started denying me the ball I had to start pressuring them with it. I had to start the offense as the guard and that's what I tried to do as much as possible, trying to get the ball into BG and letting my team know what play we were running and trying to get them involved."

On West Virginia trying to shut Odyssey Sims out of her offensive game:
"I think this was one of the more physical games I've played my entire freshman year and they did a great job, give them credit. Their defense was good, not letting me get the ball easy and not letting me bring the ball up, but making me work for it. It wasn't anything I hadn't seen already and it was tough, but it's something I have to handle."

 Head Coach Mike Carey

Opening Statement:
"First of all I thought Baylor ran a first class event here. I thought they did a great job. The NCAA did a great job so I thought everything was first class here. It was very friendly to our team and everybody so I want to thank them first. Second of all, our girls did not quit. They kept playing hard. They did what they had to do. This game was either going to be called close or it was going to let you get physical. Well, the game was called close and because of that we got several people in foul trouble and all of that. It is what it is. I was very proud of our girls. They did not quit playing hard. I think the second half we cut it to seven or eight. We were on a run and then they made a run right back at us. Again, I am very proud of our team and our seniors."

On the physical play against Brittney Griner:
"We have seen teams push them out like that and get away with it. Then we tried to double and we just did not do a good job of that when we did double. They did a good job of clearing. We were doubling for four and they would clear. I would take a couple of timeouts because their four kept coming. They did a good job adjusting to it and they have seen it all year. Then they would skip pass and we would run out. They hit a couple of three's on that. She did a good job of kicking it out of the double when we did get a double."

On West Virginia's run in the second half:
"Our guards did a good job of getting out in the passing lanes and getting ball pressure. We got a couple of turnovers and got a couple of easy ones down at the other end and hit a couple of shots. It was as simple as that. We made a run there and they had to take a timeout. Then they went back to Griner and we kind of kept fouling there again. I thought our girls did a great job. A lot of times they could have folded and quit playing hard. Sarah Miles goes out, our starting point guard, and we bring a freshman year. I thought she did a good job as a freshman coming in, in that kind of situation in this atmosphere."

On the work ethic of West Virginia:
"They are good people. Our team's GPA is over a 3.0. They are good people. I get on them hard on the floor. Off the floor we get along great. On the floor, sometimes, we do not get along. When they come to the floor they have to work hard. It is a business on the floor. Off the floor it is not. They understand that. They have just been a great group on and off the floor and a great role model, not only for our younger kids, but for West Virginia University. They are just great people."

On scoring while Griner was on the bench:
"If you noticed, we kept taking it into the post when she went out and that is when Asya scored some of her points and Media. We were able to go into the post a lot more and get some scores. That is what I kept saying on the timeout, `now is the time to make a run. We have got to cut this while she is on the bench.' We could not pick up her fourth. We had opportunities and just did not pick up her fourth foul early in the second half when we needed to do that and it did not happen."

 Sophomore Center Asya Bussie

On her matchup with Brittney Griner:
"Yeah, it was pretty physical. They called the fouls one-sided to me. The foul situation explained everything. It was just a physical game the whole time."

On what Kim Mulkey said to her after the game:
"She was just talking to me about my family."

On the way the game was played:
"I had to focus more on defense. Just deny the paint and just defending her more this game and not so much offensively."

 Senior Guard Liz Repella

On their second half run and how Baylor was able to regain the lead:
"Yeah, like he said we got on to them, a little run there and then it hurt us that some of our players were in foul trouble. They got the momentum back and the crowd was behind them so I guess that's a factor too."

On the first possession and that lift it gave West Virginia:
"Yeah that was definitely a big play. We knew Asya, Asya's a good player so we knew Asya could do that. I think that probably gave her a lot of confidence too and our other players."

On Brittney Griner's impact on the game and how they played against her:
"Yeah we were ready to go at her. We knew she was going to block some shots but we weren't going to shy away or try to alter our shots. You know, coach always says with a shot blocker, you can't fade away from them because they're going to block. You either have to go into them and they're going to call it or not. So we just continued to attack and try to get into her body."

On her team and what she will remember most:
"This team right here, my senior year. Just, you know, all the relationships, I think that's a big thing. I mean my teammates are like my sisters and he's like a second dad so, it's just that."



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