Related Stories
Tuesday, August 16, 2005 at America West Arena
Detroit Shock 51, Phoenix Mercury 58

Recap | Box Score
August 16, 2005
America West Arena
Shock 51, Mercury 58
Points:(DET) K. Smith, 11
(PHO) Two Tied, 14
Rebounds:(DET) Two Tied, 8
(PHO) K. Vodichkova, 7
Assists:(DET) D. Nolan, 4
(PHO) P. Taylor, 5
Blocks:(DET) R. Riley, 2
(PHO) M. Stepanova, 4
Steals:(DET) C. Ford, 2
(PHO) A. DeForge, 3
Turnovers:(DET) S. Cash, 5
(PHO) Three Tied, 3
(DET) 10
(PHO) 7
Points In
The Paint:
(DET) 18
(PHO) 28
Maria Stepanova
  • Points: 14
  • Rebounds: 4
  • Block: 4
  • Minutes: 29
  • Shock Head Coach Bill Laimbeer

    “Our team didn’t show in the second half, which was very discouraging. We had no focus and didn’t really want to win the game. It’s very discouraging when our team wants to take halves off. We take both nights off and halves off, and we can’t allow that to happen.”

    “Coming out of half-time, I thought we had the game in control. We just didn’t want this game as much as they did. I don’t really think it’s anything they did, but more about what we did to ourselves. It’s embarrassing to shoot 4 for 31 in the second half. It really wasn’t a tough game, but shame on us for failing to show in the second half. Had we given our best effort, then it becomes a different game."

    Shock Guard Katie Smith

    “We didn’t execute very well down the stretch. We allowed them to make cuts to the basket, and also get too many offensive rebounds. Offensively, we got decent looks but couldn’t knock them down. Ultimately, I think we just lost our focus. We gave in a little bit, and they wanted it more than we did down the stretch. We need to learn from this game and let it motivate us for each of our upcoming games. We’re fighting for our lives right now, and every game matters. It’s disappointing that we let this one slide, and hopefully it doesn’t come back to haunt us.”

    Shock Guard Deanna Nolan

    “I think they really wanted it more at the end of the game. It was a matter of us missing some shots and turning the ball over too much. We missed some easy lay-ups throughout the game, and those can make a big difference in the final outcome.”

    “We’ve put a focus on rebounding the basketball, and we did a great job of that tonight. It’s our rebounding ability that gets us those second and third opportunities. Phoenix started playing some sort of box-and-two in the second half, and it’s my role to react to what they throw at us defensively. We try to run things that we think will work. That’s all we can really ask for, but unfortunately it didn’t get the job done tonight.”

    Mercury Head Coach Carrie Graf

    “I think our changing defense is really unsettled. We mixed it up a lot with some of our different zone looks and I think that really changed the game for us.”

    “Maria (Stepanova) and Ashley Robinson clogged up the middle, coming up with some huge blocks down the stretch and their length inside of them when we’re playing our changing defense, I think that was big for us. The biggest thing was we got absolutely smashed on the glass in the first half and we turned it around and nearly matched them in the second half. If you can get within two rebounds of a team like Detroit, I think you’re doing a good job. It took a whole lot of foul language in halftime to get that effort out of us.”

    Without Diana Taurasi scoring:
    “It says something about our team, we’ve played a few games without “D” this year. She’s been out with an injury and we’ve played some halves without her and obviously you don’t anticipate that you’re going to beat a team like Detroit when one of your star players doesn’t get a basket. Like I said, it shows the depth of our team and the character and effort. Our rebounding efforts in the second half and our changing defense allowed us to win a game without “D” scoring.”

    Mercury Forward Maria Stepanova

    On her last game:
    “I’m very happy that we won today and I can go back home with a good feeling about the team and that I helped the team.”

    On if she’ll return this season:
    “I’ll come back this year if we make the finals. I’ll definitely try to come back for next season. I don’t know if it will be the same schedule next year because it will be the World championship so it’s going to be tough doing the WNBA and Europe.”

    Mercury Guard Diana Taurasi

    “That’s what we had to do in the first half, just smack on the boards. A team like that, they like living up the boards. They throw it up and go get it, they’re so physical and athletic and that’s what we had to do. Everybody did a great job the second half.”

    “I really don’t care about scoring as long as we win, that’s all that gets us going is winning. It doesn’t matter how many points you score, if you have a W, you did your job. Obviously, you don’t want to end up with a goose-egg at the end of the night, but hey, sometimes it happens.”