Nov. 25, 2011
Head Coach Geno Auriemma
How do you feel about the first half?
"The first half? The first half was a lot like the second half. I thought it was the worst exhibition of basketball I've ever seen by two teams, in the twenty seven years I've been at Connecticut. We should give everyone a refund. It was an embarrassment. I don't know what that was, but it wasn't anything that I'm used to seeing. It's just two bad teams playing bad basketball. It was forty minutes of it, not twenty minutes of it."
How does it feel to come together for a tournament where there's no rhyme or reason to the teams in it?
"I don't know. You'd have to ask the people at the Basketball Travelers Inc. because they're the ones that threw this thing together. It gets harder and harder to make a field because everyone wants to make sure that they can win a game or two. So, it's hard to match up teams so they can give everyone a chance to win at least once or twice. Supposedly, thats the thought going into it."
What do you do as a coach in a game when the score is 42-3?
"At that point, and before that point, what you're trying to do is to take whatever it is that we've been doing the last couple days in practice and see if we can recreate it. Regardless of the score, we ought to be able to complete this pass and that pass and we ought to be able to get this shot or that shot if we want that shot. We ought to be able to make a free throw. We ought to be able to do some things that you work really hard on in practice every day. You're not really looking at the score until it gets to a point where you just ...you just want your team to play some semblance of good basketball and I didn't really see any of that."
Senior Guard Tiffany Hayes
On FDU's poor scoring in the first half:
"I guess we were getting lucky because they were getting good looks off of us. We need to communicate better and we were lucky we were able to grab the rebounds."
On the difficulty of playing in such a lopsided game:
"It can be (difficult), but you need to focus and play great for all 40 minutes. I think some of the time we just take possessions off and that's not good."
On having another game tomorrow:
"One of the first things we said in the locker room was that this was today, and we have two games to redeem ourselves. We need to come out better tomorrow."
Redshirt Junior Center Heather Buck
On staying focused in a lopsided game:
"For us it's not about the score, it's about staying focused as a team. Coach always says it's not about if we win or lose, its how we play. Despite of the score, we need to focus on what our goals are."
On what her goals are nightly:
"My focus is always to play defense, block shots, and rebound. Anything else that happens is gravy. As long as I'm getting in there and blocking shots, I'm doing what I want to do."
On her Thanksgiving feast:
"If I said one of my mom's dishes was my favorite I'd be lying, that's how good they all are. My brother just got married this summer so we had Thanksgiving at his house and they made beet stuffing which is a family recipe. They made sweet potatoes and butternut squash and basically everything...I was so full."
Freshman Guard Brianna Banks
On Geno saying it was the worst execution he's seen in a long time:
"I think we played great defense, but we did not do anything on offense like we should have. Defense was pretty good."
On the other team not scoring:
"I don't think we ever even realized the score until half time. Or until coach tells us to back off. I really don't look at the scoreboard at all."
On when Geno said to back off:
"He told us to go into a 2-3. That's pretty much it. We don't go off the score. It is more about intensity and how we play and run our stuff."
Redshirt Junior Guard Caroline Doty
On a weak tournament field:
"You have to approach it like any game. We don't come out on the court to play for points on the scoreboard, we come out to get better and learn. With the score it was today we could have worked on our different offenses and working the ball, or trying to see if we want to give it to a post player or an open three. We failed today doing that. Every game is a learning experience, whether it was like today or Monday night. We just didn't take advantage of the opportunity tonight."
On going back out tomorrow:
"We said in the locker room, `listen we have to fix it by tomorrow'. We are lucky we have another and we don't have all week to be run into the ground about it. We need to turn around and show that things happen and we just have to come back and respond. You are going to make mistakes, it is how you respond which is the important thing."
Fairleigh Dickinson Head Coach Peter Cinella
With such a young team, what do you tell them about a game like this?
"We just tried to do as many positive things as we could. It was a very tight second half, they only outscored us by seven. A couple of plays could have gone either way, and we could have outscored them. We just try to take as many positive things as we can. We only had 17 turnovers, which was a positive thing, and we had some freshmen step up. Erika Livermore had nine rebounds, Torrie Childs, in her first start of the season, had seven rebounds. We were just looking to get some positive things out of this game and try to get better, because we will not see another team like that. If we can make passes from point A to point B against this type of pressure, then against other teams we might be able to make better passes."
What did you say to your team at the half?
"We had a lot of open shots that we just missed. It looked a little frustrating because the score was so lopsided, but we actually had some nice possessions. The shots just didn't fall. Then we had some bad shots, but I said that if we could turn it around and get back to taking good shots every time, some of them would start falling. They kind of hung in there and played much better in the second half.
You mentioned improving. What do you think your team will take out of this to get better during the rest of the season?
"Anytime you play against better people, you are going to get better if you compete, and they did compete today. Just going against bigger, stronger players, we know that we need to be a little bigger and stronger and we've got to be a little tougher. We've got to find a way to do a better job on the boards. Just try to do little things to get better. Even if you do good basketball, like drive to the seam and kick to the side, even against UConn, you are going to get an open shot. That's what they did in the second half, they drove it, they kicked it. You can still even get an open shot if you do the right things like that."