Minnesota Charlotte Quotes

WNBA Post-Game Quotes
Minnesota vs. Charlotte
June 4, 2005 @ Target Center

Charlotte 67
MINNESOTA 73

Minnesota Coach Suzie McConnell Serio:
"It was a good win. We had balanced scoring inside-out. We had players make great contributions up and down the stat sheet. Svetlana Abrosimova... Svet just being Svet, making things happen, hitting timely baskets. Vanessa Hayden, just her presence, her defensive presence. Us being able to go to her inside. She played with a lot of confidence and was able to play a lot more minutes being in the starting lineup and than getting rest, as opposed to getting in in the middle of the half. We felt we could get more out of her by starting her, then giving her a rest, then being able to bring her back in. It wasn't anything Tamika wasn't doing by any means. It wasn't a lack of production; rather, it was just doing whatever gets the most out of our post players."

"[Ohlde and Hayden are] 6-5 and 6-4. They just complement each other well. Vanessa is the banger, the physical post player, and Ohlde is more finesse. They play well together and we had visions of them playing together, with Tamika in the mix. Vanessa, obviously, came back stronger this year not having an injury to deal with in training camp. She had a great offseason and stayed healthy, trained hard and had a very productive training camp and a good start to the season. So we're just trying to increase her minutes as much as we can."

"We talked about wanting it more than our opponent, and we didn't have that last night against Washington down the stretch. There are still some mistakes we need to clean up, but for the most part we found a way to win tonight. This team played with a lot of heart and a lot of emotion. They were just into the game from start to finish. Defensively we were much sharper. Everybody was on the same page."

"That's the one stat [Hayden's six blocks] that stood out to the team. It definitely gives the team energy; it does in practice as well. She can be impressive, and it's confidence for our guards knowing they have someone behind them inside if they get beat, to help them out. We've just got to keep her out of foul trouble."

Minnesota Guard Katie Smith:
(On Vanessa Hayden) "It's not unexpected because of the way she's been playing from the get-go and the work that she's put in. She's such a presence out there and she's very intimidating. Her moves have gotten a lot better, that running hook, and she's a solid rebounder. It's just nice to have that presence inside. She adds a lot and gives us great minutes... This offseason she put in the work, and is still putting in the work. It's just nice to see people be rewarded for the work that they put in."

Minnesota Center Nicole Ohlde:
"As you can see, [Hayden] just came out and was great on the offensive end, great on the defensive end. She's just such an easy target to throw to; she goes up and gets anything. It was fun. She did a tremendous job tonight. She likes to play physical."

Minnesota Forward Svetlana Abrosimova:
"People knew [Hayden] had the potential, but you never know if the person is going to play better, get better. It depends on not only their talent but on their work ethic, and I think it helped her a lot playing in Europe. She's just a better player right now."

"I just tried to bring a lot of energy to my team and be aggressive every time I touched the ball. We've never beaten Charlotte here, and it was just all the emotions going. We lost a game yesterday we were supposed to win and it's always hard to come back, back-to-back, but it's a momentum thing right now. I'm really happy how everybody played. It was a great team effort and with the girls' [Smith and Hayden] birthdays, it was a good birthday present for them."

Charlotte Coach Trudi Lacey:
"I thought we competed very hard, and we played much better then we had previously against San Antonio. We made a lot of progress tonight. I was pleased with our effort. We had some breakdowns on the Lynx offensive rebounds and gave up some open '3's, and I really thought that was the difference in the game. Otherwise it was a pretty even contest."

"They hit five three-pointers, and I think that was the big difference in the game. It was one of those things that we had wanted to focus on, and it's easier said than done. They have so many three-point threats, and they got some looks off of offensive rebounds and kicked it out and hit some wide-open '3's."

"We had opportunities to execute down the stretch, but we just didn't. It was a hard-fought game. We have to give Minnesota credit because they were in a back-to-back game and coming off of a loss. We were up against a tough opponent, and they deserved to win the game."

Charlotte Forward Tangela Smith:
"We needed to take care of the ball more [down the stretch], and defensively we just have to get after it for 40 minutes -- not 35 minutes, not 30 minutes. When they have their runs, we have to stick together as a team and just fight, and that's something I don't think we did. We did have a great effort, but this season is too short."

"Hopefully this is just our slump we're going through now, and we're getting it out of the way early. It's not how you start, it's how you finish... We're happy [we had a chance at the end], but it's still upsetting to be 1-5. We were there, but these kinds of losses are so frustrating right now."

"[Hayden] is big and aggressive. She played with a lot of intensity tonight. She came out, she was on fire, she played great defense. She has long arms, and it's just hard to get around her because she's so big."

Charlotte Center Tammy Sutton-Brown:
"[Hayden] is a good player. Obviously she's very strong, very physical. Six blocks tonight, geez... She's a good player and playing well for them right now."

"We've been struggling a little bit, and we needed a game like this. Unfortunately it didn't go the way we wanted it to, but we fought hard and that's a positive thing -- a step in the right direction... One thing we need to get better at is defending and making sure we play defense all the way through."

"[Lewis] came in and gave us a spark, which we definitely needed. She really stepped up and it was very positive. I think a lot of us fed off that, so that was a good thing."
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