Jan. 28, 2012
Box Score |
Louisville Head Coach Jeff Walz
(On being down late against a slow tempo offense)
"We had to come up with some stops. That was our problem. I think there were three straight possessions where Sweeney drove the baseline and scored on three different players. I told them we can't continue to let them score if we expect to win this game. Finally we came up with some stops, and I thought we did a really nice job. We made a few of their kids who aren't there best three point shooters take shots, which is what we talked about all week. We have to make the players that normally don't shoot the three, shoot more of them. I thought we did a pretty decent job on that."
(On Asia Taylor's performance)
"I thought she played extremely well. We missed so many lay-ups; we shoot ourselves in the foot. Instead of quitting or expecting your teammate to make the layup, Asia (Taylor) ran the floor twice to start the second half and gets two offensive boards. I think the one she missed; she got back herself and passed it out to Becky (Burke) for a three. The next one down Bria (Smith) misses the layup and Asia gets the rebound and misses the put back but gets it back and puts it in. I was really pleased with how well she continued to play. That's what she can do. Asia (Taylor) is starting to understand what she can do, and she is doing it well and go out there and play 20 minutes and get us 14 points and nine rebounds. What really helped us is she got four offensive rebounds. She gets one of those rebounds and passes it out to Becky (Burke) who shot a pretty bad shot. Asia goes for the rebound and gets hit, she then steps up to the free throw lane and makes both free throws. Those are big time plays for us and I was really proud of her. It was a game where we needed her to play to her potential, and she did."
(On Asia's break from starting and Cierra Warren not playing as much)
"I knew coming into this game that Cierra (Warren) was going to have a difficult time guarding on the perimeter. Villanova makes things very difficult. I watched their game against UConn. Until UConn went to five guards, they were struggling as well. Cierra (Warren) is our best post player on our team, but unfortunately we weren't playing somebody who uses a traditional post five player for her to guard. I talked to Cierra (Warren) and she has to come to practice tomorrow and be prepared to play. She needs to play Tuesday at DePaul because they use a traditional low post player. It's one of those things that I have talked to our players about coming out here and being ready to play. You have to be able to adjust to games and scout. There will be some games you play, and some games you may not. When teams try to take advantage of our weaknesses, we have to put someone in who can fix things for us."
(On current wins in BIG EAST)
"Oh it is a big win. There is no question about that. I knew coming into the year that with Tia (Gibbs) and Moe (Reid) out, every game was going to be a grind for us. Every game on our schedule the rest of the way, I can't look at and say we will win by 20. Now I do think we can compete and win in every game left, I sure do. There is nobody that I look at, and say this should be an easy win. To be 6-2 in the BIG EAST we have to continue to move forward. We have two tough ones on the road against DePaul and West Virginia, before we come back here for an easy game against UConn. It couldn't be any harder for us right now. We have played a ton on the road, so our kids have a ton of experience. I think they are excited now, and hopefully tomorrow will be a good day of practice."
(On the play of Shoni Schimmel)
"I thought she made a few really nice passes in the second half that got tipped out of bounds. She had a really nice drive where she tried to wrap it around Asia or Shawnta' and the ball got kicked out of bounds. Everybody is keying on her right now, so she has got to be more relaxed especially at the beginning of the games. I just got to get her to relax, especially in the first 10-12 minutes, when she's not going to get five or six wide open looks. Everybody knows you're the leading scorer, you're the three-point shooter; they are going to defend you. If we get everybody else involved then all of a sudden, the other team starts to back off a little bit. You come off an on-ball screen, go shoulder-to -shoulder, and then you get yourself a good look. I thought in the first half we had a lot of good looks in the paint, we just didn't make them."
(Is it too early to look toward the NCAA Tournament)
"Yea, we are taking the season game-by-game. We have to take care of business, we know that every game is important to us, but I'm not going to put that pressure on our kids to sit there and worry where we get seeded for the NCAA Tournament. Our goal is that we have got to get in it first, and then we will worry about the tournament."
(On the fan support for today's game)
"It was great. I think it is our second weekend game since December 10th or 12th. We didn't get any favors with our BIG EAST schedule the first half when dealing with weekend games. I'm just very appreciative of our fans, we have the best fans. I thought the place got loud and they were into the game. There were times during the first half that I might have fallen asleep also, when it was 21-21 for almost five minutes. The crowd kept trying to get us going, I just appreciate them and I know our players appreciate them as well. To get 10,800 or 11,000, just doesn't happen in a lot of places."
Villanova Head Coach Harry Perretta
"I thought it was a really good game, I thought it was an enjoyable game to watch. Spectators got a good game out of it. And we're a better team than last year, we're a much better team but we still can't get over the hump on the road and for us to be able to get over the hump we have to play smarter, that's what my whole lecture was about after the game. We're a motion offense team and in the first half we missed at least five cutters that we should've gotten layups from in the first half. The problem is we can't afford to miss those cutters because we can't take it off the dribble at the end of the shot clock and score the ball. They (Louisville) can, they make an offensive mistake they can make up for it with an individual move, and we don't have that kind of player. So a lot of it depends on us making the right pass at the right time, we did it for a while and got the lead, then we made a couple defensive errors. Then at the end it was one of those things were every time we needed to stop them they made a very good play they needed to make at the time they needed to make it, but that's what good teams do. I thought this was a good game overall and hopefully a learning experience for us."
(On Asia Taylor's performance)
"Well what she does is she creates offense. They gave her the ball at the elbow, that's what they did with Monique Reid all the time. We're not allowing her to make that jump shot, like we're crowding her. When you crowd a player that's got athleticism like that they're gonna take it by you and score. She made plays. I was going to try to play a zone but the problem is if you play the zone you give up a three in that situation which we did the one time to (Shoni) Schimmel when we were up one. So you have to try to play man-to-man but we don't really have a good matchup for their small forward in that game."
(On keeping a lead on the road)
"We have a tough time holding on to a lead at home. I mean we were up 15 on Cincinnati with three minutes to go, but it's tough and it's what makes our league so good. If you look at our league, from 3 to 12, I don't think there's eight points that separates any of those teams. We're one of the three thru twelve teams and on any given day I think any one of those teams can win. But to win on the road you have to be a little smarter, you have to make a crucial three, like I thought we ran a good inbounds play the one time when we were down three and we missed that three. Then we made it when we were down six, you know what I'm saying? You need to make the one when you're down three. It's tough to win on the road, it is what it is."
(On toughness of the Big East)
"Well I've always said it's the toughest league in the country; and what makes it the toughest league in the country - you know everyone talks about Connecticut and Notre Dame - what makes our league the toughest league in the country is our three thru 12 teams. For example, we've beaten the top three teams in the Atlantic 10 and we could be a twelfth place team in our league, you see what I'm saying? And the same for Louisville if they were in a different league, you see what I'm saying? That's what makes our league so good, it's not just Notre Dame and Connecticut, their unbeatable. Then you have the three thru 12 teams who can beat up on the top teams outside of our league. That's what makes our league I think the best, it's not necessarily the one two teams."
(Thoughts on the NCAA tournament chances)
"I got to be honest with you I think that it's to early. Well Louisville has 17 wins now so their in really good shape but for us it's really early. I think a lot of the teams in the middle, one of the problems this year I think is because we're beating each other so much in the middle, somebody is going get left out. Because they are going to wind up with a 7-9 record instead of a 9-7 record because the middle teams are so good. We could keep each other out of the tournament, you're going see that on the men's side this year too because we are beating each other so much."
(Comparing Louisville to UCONN and Notre Dame)
"Louisville has the athleticism to play with them, they don't have the experience to play with them. I thought today, our biggest chance was that we were more experienced and we were able to generate shots. If you saw last year's team, we couldn't get good shots. This year we got decent shots. That's what's going to hurt Louisville, especially against Notre Dame `cause their so experienced. Connecticut is a little bit younger too, but Louisville has the athleticism to play with them, they can rebound with them. Louisville and Rutgers in my opinion, maybe Georgetown, have the best chance to upset them because they have the athletes, they can press them a little bit and rebound on them. That's the difference I see."