Minnesota Washington Quotes

June 3, 2005

Washington Mystics 74
Minnesota Lynx 71

Minnesota Coach Suzie McConnell Serio:

“Temeka Johnson was the difference maker on the floor tonight with her penetration. We adjusted and defended differently. She made great reads and found open shooters, or found open post players and we didn’t adjust, we didn’t rotate. That run was the killer. But the free throw line killed us. We go to the free throw line in the second half, and we didn’t capitalize on that. It could have been the difference in the game for us. We allowed them to get second opportunities on the defensive end. They played with more of a sense of urgency in the second half, we didn’t match it. (I’m) very disappointed that we weren’t hungry enough to come away with the win.”

On Mystics guard, Temeka Johnson
“She was a difference maker. She’s very quick and she’s able to get into the paint. When you go under screens she gets penetration, so you have to help from the perimeter. And she finds open shooters on the perimeter when you help with your post unless you rotate. There are times we defended it well, and there were times that we just didn’t rotate. When we didn’t get there in time, she found the post rolling. She’s a very smart player and reads things very well.”

On tomorrow nights game against Charlotte Sting:
“We need to be the team that comes out with a sense of urgency tomorrow night, and hungry for the win.”

Minnesota Guard Katie Smith:

On the difference in the Lynx scoring between halves
“The difference was that they worked a little harder, they wanted it a little more. Their rebounding, taking it at us, penetrating, knocking down some shots and they did a good job at moving the ball, for ourselves it was similar offensively as it was in the first half but defensively we just didn’t get a chance to hold our ground. Defense is something we are going to have to focus more on, and take some pride in and get it done.”

On rebounding from the tough loss and playing Charlotte tomorrow night
“It is actually good that you have a game back-to-back, especially after the disappointing game tonight. You have a chance to prove yourself and come out and correct some of the things. It really is a positive, you have a chance to come out and correct some things. But, we just really have to come out and want it.”

Minnesota Forward Vanessa Hayden:

On the difference of play between the first and second half
“They (Mystics) did a good job at making the adjustments coming into the second half. We got called for some fouls early in the second half, and I think that takes you out of your game. I have to get used to that, and playing through that and being able to create shots and help my team. I don’t think I did that in the second half, and that is something I am going to have to do. They did a good job of adjusting coming out into the second half.”

On the Mystics rebounding
“We did a good job of controlling the boards, and keeping them off the offensive boards in the first half, playing strong and going after it. In the second half there were a lot more whistles, there were a lot softer calls made. Regardless if they (the officials) are calling fouls, we still have to go after them hard. Rebounding is big in basketball, and we can’t let anything change that.”

Minnesota Forward Svetlana Abrosimova:

On the game and the loss
“I think it (the game) came down to the last two minutes of the game. They got way too many offensive rebounds and second chances. We were very close to getting steals, but we just didn’t find a way to win the game. They closed the game very well and their crowd obviously helped. It is a tough loss; it’s tough to lose games like that.”

On the MCI Center crowd
“It always helps when you are at home, you hustle more and there is more energy. But, I’m not saying we didn’t have that energy, you always want to win whether you are on the road or at home.”

On the game against Charlotte
“It is tough to play back-to-back. We are very hungry to beat Charlotte, because we’ve never beat them in many years because we always have back-to-back games against them. We just have to recoup, forget about it and learn from it.