Maryland-Iowa Postgame Quotes

3/4/2016 12:00:00 AM

March 4, 2016

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Maryland Quotes
COACH FRESE: Red hot. I mean, really kind of took off after their last game. Against Michigan. So tremendous first quarter by them. I thought we did a much better job, you know, getting used to the jitters, coming ready to play in the second quarter. Our defense, our rebounding improved. We were down in our rebounding at that point. So just the way we were able to make in the second quarter was huge. And then we were led by our two vets, our juniors, you know, Shatori and Bri. I mean, the inside outside combination that we had going all game. I thought they said set the tone with their mentality, not wanting to go home, and just, you know, our team was able to feed off of that, which I thought was great, balanced around the two of them.

Q. Shatori, what was working defensively?

SHATORI WALKER-KIMBROUGH: We just started making up a little bit, throwing different things also at them. Like coach said, they came out red hot so we wanted to make them uncomfortable. They were coming out, getting open shots, and we wanted to make sure we contested all of their shots and give them hard shots.

Q. Just going off that, in the first quarter, what do you think happened that Iowa was able to get to score all those points? Did coach say anything going into the second half how you guys could improve on that?

SHATORI WALKER-KIMBROUGH: Yeah. I mean, they didn't want to go home, and I think it showed that they came out with a -- they came out really aggressive. They came out playing very hard. I think we kind of started off slow, and I think we definitely showed how hard we came out in the second half, that we didn't want to go home either. So, it was a point-for-point. They're a great team, but I thought that we did a great job defensively in the second half just giving them hard looks like I said before.

Q. Brionna, dominant performance from you inside. What was working for you there? You had 18 points in the paint and rebounding was like 42 to 25.

BRIONNA JONES: I think coming into the game, the coaches hounded us to get paint touches, and after the last game, they outrebounded us, just going hard to the glass. I think just execution and ball movement. When we had the ball inside and out, I think we just executed the game plan today.

Q. Your coach used the press a lot in the first quarter. It didn't seem to be too effective, but you went back to it in the third quarter. What did you see maybe in their scout or anything that allowed you guys to try to put the press on?

COACH FRESE: A couple things. I mean, I wanted to start out to kind of get our nerves and anxiousness out with what we were doing. Then we were locked in, obviously, in the second quarter on our man and being aggressive. But I felt like in the second half, they were going to want to, you know, really, you know, get to the free throw line, shoot threes. They were trying to be aggressive, trying to take some time off the clock so they had more time to work in the half court.

Q. Brionna, having not -- playing here for the first time, did it take a little while to get used to the court and all that kind of thing?

BRIONNA JONES: I think it did take a little while for us to get used to it, but they he -- we took it and we came back at 'em.

Q. Coach, you talked about how the development of your young reserves, Kiah and Kiara, would be important. How do you think they performed today?

COACH FRESE: I thought they did a terrific job being ready. Kiah was sensational for her first time, and really utilized her minutes tonight, which we're going to be able to build on. Kiara the same thing. I thought she was locked in and ready to play, and you're going to need to be able to extend that depth in the tournament.

Q. You guys were 9 of 15 from the line, which obviously I know you want to be better with that. How important is that going to be going down these next couple days?

COACH FRESE: Yeah, really important. Disappointed. We were a hundred percent at halftime, you know, with not a lot of attempts. But, you know, that's an area that we have focused on all season long, understanding two shots that you get and how valuable those points are. So, you know, definitely an area we have to improve on.

Q. Was that second quarter as well as this team has played defensively, and how much did that jump start the game?

COACH FRESE: It was huge. I thought we finally brought a lot of tremendous energy. We started using our length, our athleticism. We really made it difficult. I thought our post defense on their bigs was probably the best we've had all year. And, again, you could feel Bri Jones' presence inside defensively, and then it really picked up the energy of everybody else.

Iowa Quotes
COACH BLUDER: Sure. Just want to congratulate Maryland. Played a great game against us. We had trouble with their pressure. I was proud of the team, the way we came out. We had great intensity in the first quarter. Obviously, it takes four quarters, and after that, we really pretty much lost it. We have 10 assists to three turnovers in the first quarter, and then we have two assists the rest of the way. You know, we're not going to win games that way. Boards were tough on us, and we just forced too many passes into turnovers.

Q. Ally, obviously the first quarter went about as well as you could expect. Defensively, what about Maryland caused so many problems really from thereon after?

ALLY DISTERHOFT: I think they really just picked up their intensity, went to a little bit more of a after denial on a lot of our girls, and we didn't respond as well as we could have to that, and we stopped kind of moving the ball like we know how to and just kind of let it get to us. A little bit disappointing after that first quarter, obviously, but credit Maryland. They picked up their intensity and it got to us.

Q. Ally, again, on the defensive end for you guys, Maryland obviously has a good inside player, then their guard gets inside a lot. What about their team offensively allows them to get so many points in the paint?

ALLY DISTERHOFT: I mean, they have a lot of threats on the offensive end. Tania was doing a pretty good job against Walker Kimbrough in the first quarter, but then they started to post up a little bit more, so tried to switch things up. But, you know, they're a talented team. They can hit from inside and outside. They took advantage of that. When we were playing them tight on the perimeter, they worked to get it inside. So kind of took what we were given them.

Q. Kali, you came off the bench and played aggressively right from the start, played with a lot of confidence. Did you go in there with the idea nothing to lose in this game?

KALI PESCHEL: Yeah. My teammates did a great job of setting me up and finding me in the cross, and I'm glad the shots went down. And as a senior, it's kind of a last go at it, so feeling pretty good about the tournament.

Q. You talked about what Maryland did defensively against you guys. You were 4-of-6 from three point in the first quarter, and then only took three three pointers the rest of the game. Was that something that Maryland worked to take away or kind of what led to that?

COACH BLUDER: Yeah. I mean, they were in a zone to begin with, and then we really did a great job against their zone. And then obviously when they went to player, they could have had our three point shooters a lot better.

Q. I guess kind of the same question I asked Ally about Maryland, on the offensive end. You know, what enabled them or what allowed them to get so many points in the paint specifically tonight?

COACH BLUDER: Brionna Jones. She's an incredible athlete. She's got great experience. I mean, played in the World University Games last year. You know, my center, playing in Port Wing, Wisconsin, last year, against 5'8" players. There's no comparison of the experience level between these two players. I thought Brionna Jones did a great job. She did a great job of stealing and posting herself up. They got her the ball. And then, you know, any shots she misses, she just gets her own offensive rebound. And she's really hard to box out. But, you know, Megan's a freshman and she's going to get better and better, and I'm excited about her future.

Q. It seemed like anytime you guys would make a little bit of a run, I think you got within seven, Walker Kimbrough was able to drive and create something. Is that kind of what you noticed as well?

COACH BLUDER: That's what All Americans do. She's a tremendous player. You know, we've got a lot of great players in this league, no doubt, but Shatori is one of the best, and she's -- not only offensively, she can D it up, she can pass the ball. I mean, she wants the ball in those type of situations. She is a tremendous basketball player, and a great kid too.

Q. Do you feel your team has earned an NCAA bid?

COACH BLUDER: We'll have to wait and see. You can't predict those things. You know, I do know we play in one of the toughest conferences in America, and, you know, we had a tough schedule. We only played the bottom teams in our conference once, and so sometimes, you know, you look at conference rankings or conference standings, and when you play only five teams double and all the rest of them are single, you know, it depends who you play, right? If you play the worst teams in our conference double, you're going to have a better record, and so I think you have to throw that out and look at the whole body of the work, how we did in nonconference, what our strength of schedules were and things like that.

Q. Do you feel like your team has grown to this point? Especially the way you played here in this tournament, Coach. You were not out of this game until late, really. Do you feel like this young team has really grown to this point?

A. I do. I think that we've done a good job. Those freshmen have gotten better and better as the year has gone on, and I'm happy with the progress that we made, but after a loss nobody's ever happy.