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Game Day Quotes - UConn

March 22, 2016

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Second Round · UConn vs. Duquesne

Gampel Pavilion · Storrs, Conn.

Monday, March 21


Post Game Quotes - No. 1 Seed UConn 

Geno Auriemma, UConn Head Coach

Opening Statement – “I’ve been saying this pretty much all year, whenever the games get bigger and the stakes get higher as the season goes along, our three seniors play even better than they normally play and they play great most of the time. Today was just a magnificent performance by the three of them. It was really something to see, just the way they feed off each other and the way they instill confidence in their teammates. They’ve grown up so much since four years ago when they were freshman and it was a perfect way to end this part of their career.”

On Breanna Stewart diving after a loose ball – “We were up 29 at the time and as Stewie said, it’s something that you learn. When she was a freshman, she wouldn’t do that, but she saw Bria (Hartley) do it a bunch of times, or she saw Stefanie Dolson do it a couple of times, or Kelly Farris do it. When you get to be a senior, everything is magnified and all the pressure is on you to do all those kind of things. We’ve always prided ourselves in that. It doesn’t matter what the score is, if there’s a play to be made, you make it. Stewie at practice is not like she was today. If Stewie came to practice every day like she was today, we’d be really good.”

Morgan Tuck, Forward

On the win – “I think we played really well. I think we were just kind of feeling it a little bit and we had a little stretch there in first half where we were just going kind of a little too fast, but I think we all slowed it down.

On rebounding – “I just try to do whatever I can, you know. I’m not the best at going in and grabbing the rebound so I just try to just keep it alive and tip it out.”

On scoring 20 points – “I know I try to just take advantage of whoever is guarding me, so that’s what I tried to do and my teammates gave me the ball where I was comfortable so it worked out well.”

Kia Nurse, Guard

On recovering from slow start – “I mean I think we just settled down to our own pace and Moriah (Jefferson) did a good job of making sure we did that and those kind of things. Obviously the first five minutes of every game is kind of crazy and it’s just kind of how you react to them.”

On the size of crowd – “That was a big crowd for a nine o’clock game, but we were really fortunate to have them and obviously they make a big difference for us. Obviously a nine o’clock game is late, but we are really thankful they came out.”

On handling different start times because of the tournament – “I think every game day is pretty much the same in terms of shoot around and pregame and the timing. We just have to understand, you know, this is the time you have to be ready to go whenever game time is.”

Katie Lou Samuelson, Guard/Forward

On the seniors – “I don’t think each of them could play any better than they did. The biggest thing was they kept going with it, like Morgan (Tuck) started off missing layups and coach got on her and she responded really well and just kept up the rest of the game. I think the three of them really just took control.”

On Napheesa Collier – “I think she did really well today. I think her and Gabby (Williams) came off the bench and did a great job today.”

Moriah Jefferson, Guard

On this being her last game at Gampel – “Senior night was a struggle so we wanted to come out for our last home game at Gampel and really give a good show for the fans and everything was clicking from start to finish.”

On what changed after it was 20-17 – “Our defense stepped up a little more. We were giving them too many open threes in the beginning and some of the shots that weren’t going in for us started knocking in. Then we got a couple of stops, score, stops, score, stops possessions and after that it just kept going up.”

Breanna Stewart, Forward

On this being her last game at Gampel – “It was nice to have senior night out of the way because we got all the emotions out of the way and that was a struggling game so I’m glad it wasn’t today. We wanted to come out and just have fun and make sure that our last game at Gampel was a great one.”

On the team staying calm and collected – “We work harder than any other team in the country. No matter what subs come in we’re still consistent and we make sure that we play the game at our tempo. The first half was a little rushed for us so we wanted to make sure that we came out in the second half and really controlled the game.”