Jan. 22, 2009

Recap |  Box Score |  Notes

Oklahoma Head Coach Sherri Coale
Opening Statement:
“I thought Colorado played great, I give them credit.  They fought and they played hard and they shot well.  They were 10-18 from 3; that’s a pretty good night. We were fortunate that we had a run in the second half.  That was enough to distance ourselves and hold on down the stretch.”

On Colorado’s Bianca Smith:
“Well, we tried to stay a little bit closer to her.  We knew we had to in the first half, but we played a little uninspired and played with a little more sense of urgency in the second.  I think the biggest difference in play from half one to half two for us was that we sped the game up and got it going at a pace we are a little more comfortable with.  We got some baskets in transition which we wanted to do early but didn’t do a good job of.”

On Colorado’s Zone Defense:
“Yeah, it just messed with our rhythm which is the reason you do it, that’s exactly what it’s for. We just had a hard time getting into things and part of that was a lack of aggression with the basketball.  We didn’t penetrate and force the issue and move the ball in the way we are capable of. We really wanted to settle, I just feel like we did the easy thing all night, well I shouldn’t say all night because I thought we were much better in the second half.  In the first half we just did the easy thing and settled for some things.”

On Halftime Score:
“No, just irritated and I say that with all due respect for Colorado.  I felt like the reason the score was tied was due more to our lack of readiness than to how great Colorado played and I give them credit they were terrific but we weren’t ready.  We didn’t execute our sets, even inbounds, we just weren’t sharp.”


Oklahoma Senior Center Courtney Paris
On the difference between her play in first and second halves:
“I started posting on people.   I think when you get in a zone because they are in a zone you just stay in the middle open spots instead of posting.   Coach said at halftime that we have to start working and getting on people to try and bury them.”

On Halftime Score:
“Like coach, I was irritated.  I think when your tied up playing your best that’s one thing, but when you’re  not doing the best you can that’s a whole other thing.”

Oklahoma Freshman Guard Whitney Hand
On Change in Play from First to Second Half:
“I think it was just effort and I think our team as a whole wasn’t ready for the first few intervals of the game. I think the second half we came out knowing that obviously we had to play better to beat [Colorado] so it was basically a difference of effort overall.”

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Colorado Head Coach Kathy McConnell-Miller
Opening Statement:
“We knew coming in what a tough stretch this was going to be. As a staff we’ve maintained our composure and our confidence in our players. They’ve really responded to that. There’s not one day that we’ve come to practice and they didn’t want to be coached. I credit that to the maturity of the team, and the maturity of Hannah, Bianca, and Kara in bringing some of the players along. A lot of teams at this point could have fallen apart and lost their confidence, but there isn’t a player on this team that is headed in that direction. We need to get better as a team as a result of these four games.”

On the First Half:
“I thought we were executing extremely well. We were changing defenses and not allowing OU to get comfortable in any one thing. We were hooked up as far as who their drivers were and who their shooters were. The transition from offense to defense was the best we’ve had in a long time. Offensively we put in a couple new set to exploit some mismatches, and our players responded. We executed, found the open shooter, and knocked down shots.”

On the Second Half:
“We got tired, but they did too. I think their bench is a little bit deeper than ours, but I think we came out of the half with a little too much one-on-one. We executed efficiently in the first half, but in the first six minutes (of the second half) we got away from that.”

“We’ve got to execute and know what our strengths are. Our strengths are not one-on-one or breaking people down and pulling up for jump shots. Our strengths are utilizing everyone on the floor in a 30-second time frame. When we catch and drive and look for something that’s not there, we’re just not there. The message has got to get through. I sent each of them home with a tape of the Texas game and do a little report. Each of them came back and said too much one-on-one and too many broken plays. We’re not executing what we’re good at, but that will come with a little more maturity and understanding their own strengths.”

On Oklahoma’s Paris twins:
“I was always wondering why Ashley didn’t redshirt, but thank God. What’s amazing is how the guards can find them. It does feel like they’ve been around forever.”

Colorado Senior Center Kara Richards
On Oklahoma’s Offense:
“It was tough, they are very difficult to guard. Their guards find [Courtney Paris] really well and she definitely knows how to use her body to get open shots; with her post moves, she has gotten really good.”

Colorado Junior Guard Biacna Smith
“I was trying to create plays, but they switched up their defense by moving Ashley Paris on Spears and [Carlee] Roethlisberger on me. But even still, we just got away from our execution. These last four games are the toughest we have played so far. Mentally, we have to keep playing and stay positive and continue to go forth. We need to take both the positive and the negative away and carry that over to our future opponents.”

Colorado Sophomore Forward Brittany Spears
On Colorado’s Confidence after the First Half:
“At halftime, we really felt like we could play with this team. We had a confidence that we could win this game, because we were tied. It’s hard to come back from a 16-0 run, because they are a smart and experienced team.”