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Postgame Quotes/Notes - Storm 69, Charlotte 54

Storm (14-10) 69, Charlotte (13-11) 54
July 31, 2003

STORM COACH ANNE DONOVAN:

On Lauren Jackson’s performance:
The most impressive thing is not on the stat sheet. I told her I’ve played against a lot of cream puff teams in my day and I’ve never had 20 rebounds and Charlotte is not a cream puff. She did it against a very good team. The most impressive thing to me is against that zone it can be very frustrating if you’re the key player and you don’t touch the ball and you’re not the one getting shots. But she totally kept her composure and broke the zone down with Tully (Bevilaqua). So give her kudos for that because that’s not on the stat sheet. She could have gotten frustrated and lost her composure and we would have struggled but she found the open person quite a bit.

Their zone brought them back in the second half. We made an adjustment and put Lauren at the high-post and then we were able to regain control again. Initially when we didn’t have Lauren at the high-post, we struggled against the zone. We lost the lead and then they took a healthy five-point lead. So we made the adjustment until Tully came in.

Lauren got pounded pretty good tonight. But I’m $1000 poorer today so I have no comment.

Toughest defense the Storm has faced?
Definitely. Charlotte is the number one defensive team in the WNBA. A lot of times when teams go to zone they lose some of their aggressiveness and Charlotte got after it. They made us work for every bucket.

On Dawn Staley:
Dawn is playing some of the best basketball I’ve seen her play. So heady and always capable of scoring like tonight but she usually distributes the ball. Tonight she had to step up when others weren’t knocking them down and she played extremely well.

FORWARD LAUREN JACKSON:

Biggest rebounding performance of a career?:
In the WNBA it is. In Australia I used to average that but in the WNBA it’s huge. I was pretty excited. When Sue told me (that I had 19 rebounds) when I was shooting my final free throws I was like, “No way!” So when I got the next one I was like, “Yeaaaaaaa!” I just try to get better in every game and it just shows that I can do it.

On winning on the road:
I think we need to win for our confidence. We’ve proved that we can win at home so we need to prove that we can win on the road.

On Tully Bevilaqua’s play:
She’s a real goer on the court. She trains really hard and she won the game for us.

GUARD TULLY BEVILAQUA:

On the Sting:
They’re a great team. They’ve got some great players. They got hot and we hit a dry spell and they took the lead. Then we composed ourselves and became a little more patient and played some good defense down at the other end and the momentum swung back in our direction.

On being a spark plug:
I think that’s what coach expects of me to come in change the tempo of the game and I expect that of myself. I go in to give one of the starters a rest and in the minutes I was in there I leave all my energy on the floor. I play to create some chaos out there.

STING COACH TRUDI LACEY:

On the game:
It was kind of an up-and-down game. Seattle played well in the first half. We had way too many turnovers. Obviously, Lauren Jackson was a factor, as always. We made a run and took the lead in the second half, but again we didn’t hit shots at the end. That pretty much was the story.

I thought we played better in the second half. We had a long travel (coming to Seattle) … you know, you can make a million excuses, but we looked a little fatigued. Again, it was the Lauren Jackson factor and we didn’t hit our shots.

On Jackson’s play:
Lauren has been playing exceptionally well. Anne (Donovan) has done a great job with her. She seems to be very poised and playing with a lot of confidence. She’s playing within herself and being a great leader for her team.

LJ for MVP?
Definitely, I think. I have a lot of respect for Lauren because I’m sure she’s had injuries, but she’s played through them and been there for her team. You have to have tremendous respect for somebody who does that.

GUARD DAWN STALEY:

On the game:
Needing a win is the most important thing and we didn’t get it done no matter who we were playing. We have to play more consistently and give a better effort every time we step on the floor, not just in spurts. We have to find a way to play consistent basketball no matter if our shots are falling. We have to find a way to defend … I think that’s our biggest problem.

On Jackson:
Of course (she’s an MVP candidate). Any time you get 20 points and 20 rebounds, that’s a huge feat for any player, but that just doesn’t come by any player. I think she’s having a terrific year. They have to get some more wins and go a little further in the playoffs for her to get the MVP. Right now, with Lisa Leslie out, she’s playing the best basketball in the league.

Notes:

  • Jackson became just the sixth player in league history to record 20 or more rebounds in a game, joining Chamique Holdsclaw (2x, the WNBA record of 24 on 5/23 vs. Charlotte, and 21), Lisa Leslie (2x, 21 each), Cindy Brown (21), Yolanda Griffith (20) and Natalie Williams (20).
  • Jackson is the fourth member of the “20-20 club”. The other games:
    Holdsclaw – 22 points, 24 rebounds (5/23/03)
    Holdsclaw – 29 points, 21 rebounds (6/25/02)
    Leslie – 24 points, 21 rebounds (7/2/02)
    Williams – 22 points, 20 rebounds (6/22/02)
  • Jackson set career highs and franchise records for rebounds, defensive rebounds (15 – no Storm player had more than 14 total rebounds previously) and free throw attempts (15). Her 11 made free throws tie her career high and the Storm record.
  • Jackson now has tallied 43 straight games of double-figures scoring, 23 straight games of 15+ points, seven straight games of 20+ points and three straight double-doubles.