Feb. 19, 2013
UConn Head Coach Geno Auriemma
On ending the first half playing poorly:
“I think we were in control of the game the whole first half, until the last three minutes. It just goes to show you, against a really good team, when mentally you make a couple of mistakes, how quickly the game can change. As well as we played defensively, and executed defensively, it should have been a 15 point game in the first half instead of a three point game. I don’t know that the last three minutes of the first half was the deciding factor of the game, but I think it was indicative of things that happened at various points in the game.”
On his expectations of Sophomore Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis:
“I told Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis that this was the kind of game Maya Moore used to have. The only difference is that there was about a seven minute stretch where Kaleena wasn’t involved. Tonight was the kind of game were Maya would’ve scored 50. She is just learning how much more she can do, than she did tonight. Tonight, she was phenomenal but if I showed you the film there would be things you can see that she has to work on. We could have easily won this game but we’re not smart enough to win it yet. Individually, I think our team has to understand that as individuals we’re not good enough to beat this team. It has to be a collective effort like it was during the first 15 minutes of the first half.”
On the play of Stefanie Dolson against Brittney Griner:
“I thought Stefanie Dolson played great. She just didn’t get any help from anyone but Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis. You’re not going to be able to guard Brittney Griner by yourself for 40 minutes. In the first half, she guarded her with a lot of help from others. In the second half, she didn’t get help from anyone. Everything we did right in the first half, we didn’t do right in the first half. I thought Stefanie was phenomenal.”
Sophomore Forward Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis
On the disappointment of tonight’s loss:
“It seems like every big game we come into, we get up, we hit them in the mouth first, but we come up short. Once their team turns up the volume it seems like we don’t recover from it. Once we change our attitudes or something we are just going to keep getting the same result in big games like this.”
On what particularly happened tonight:
“I disappeared in the middle of the first and second halves…I can’t really do that. When I don’t touch the ball for five minutes and I kind of hide, it hurts my team. When we aren’t getting shots, turning the ball over, and putting pressure on people that don’t have to make shots like that. At the same time we really didn’t help Stefanie [Dolson] in the second half, like we did in the first half. First half, we were doubling Britney [Griner] and making her turn the ball over and travel. Second half, we kind of left Stefanie out to dry.”
Junior Center Stefanie Dolson
On tonight’s game:
“I think Baylor did a great job of pressuring us and they got us rattled a few times. That is something we are going to have to work on…keeping our composure and make sure that we stick together and never stop moving. We need to make sure that we are running our plays correctly, listening to each other and talking to each other.”
On the second half collapse of tonight’s game plan:
“First half we did a great job of double-teaming her and making her take the tough shots and just limiting how many shots she got. In the second half, I think we doubled off the wrong guy and they got too many layups off us. That is something that we are going to have to take fromm this game and learn from. In practice we will have to find out which man to double on, and play defense.”
Baylor Head Coach Kim Mulkey
Could you talk about the play of Brittney Griner and Odyssey Sims?
“I thought the first half, these two All-Americans were 3-for-19. Had you kept [UConn] from getting two offensive boards, [we] might have had the lead if we’d have had the rebound and had the last shot of the half. I’ve never seen the two of them have two bad halves. I just told them, keep throwing the ball, she’ll find you and she did. Brittany scored her 3,000th point here in a big game; a significant game.”
What are your thoughts on winning the game and the Big XII in the last three days?
“We found [out Baylor won the Big XII Championship] on the plane. We were watching scores and found out that [Oklahoma] and Iowa State lost, which made us Big XII Champions, outright. Saturday when we get back, we’re going to celebrate. We’re going to cut down nets; we’re going to have a reunion of former Lady Bear players and it’s going to be a fun day.”
How did the play of Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis impact this game?
“She’s a great player. She had a double-double at the half and we put our best defender on her. I don’t know that Jordan Madden, who was guarding her, was doing a bad job. Sometimes you just have to acknowledge that players are good. She was coming off staggered screens and she’s got such a quick release. Credit her; she played extremely well.”
Baylor Senior Center Brittney Griner
How important was it to come out and have a strong second half?
“It was very important. In the first half, I didn’t have a good half. I didn’t help out my team too much. I wanted to come out in the second half a little bit more aggressive than I did in the first so I could do something to help out.”