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Postgame Quotes/Notes: Connecticut 60, Storm 58

Sept. 16, 2012

STORM HEAD COACH BRIAN AGLER:


On the game:
I think it was a great effort and we definitely put ourselves in position to win the game. I feel bad for our team that we didn't come through. Hand it to Connecticut. They made some plays down the stretch. They hit some free throws and made a stop when they needed to.

On what the Storm could have done differently:
Not turn the ball over. When you get the basketball that's a possession, and having 20 to 25 turnovers doesn't help you.

On relying on defense:
I was proud of our defensive effort. I think this effort is something we can build on. And that's what we're looking for. As we get people acclimated back in again I'm hoping we can finish this season with a lot of momentum.

On the disparity in free throw attempts:
I wish we would have shot more free throws and not allowed them to shoot 15.

On the team's final full possession:
We had some different options to go to. We chose one and it didn't work out.

On veterans Katie Smith and Tina Thompson:
At both ends I thought they played well. Katie hit some big shots. Tina gave us a great boost off the bench. She's a tough guard for most people. Shekinna (Stricklen) hit a big shot. I thought our team played well. We turned it over 20-something times, but I like the effort and energy and competitiveness we brought to the floor.

STORM FORWARD TINA THOMPSON:


On the game:
We played well throughout the game defensively. There were just lapses we had at times, especially at crucial times that either put them on the line to increase their lead or put them ahead. Those are tough.

On playing short-handed:
We've just been playing with injuries at different moments and we just haven't had the opportunity to be together at all one time, especially at this point of the season. Once we all got together we thought we were going to build on that and then something happens. It's unfortunate that we have to play shorthanded and it's not something we're dwelling on. We have a talented team and we're going to keep pushing forward. Even though we're getting losses, Lauren (Jackson) and Sue (Bird) are getting the opportunity to heal up. That will definitely be a positive for us going into the playoffs.

On getting the full roster healthy:
We'll definitely benefit and be able to fill in whenever necessary. I think that everyone on this team is either playing a position that they probably haven't played in their life or very little throughout their career. So when the time comes that we're all together I believe we'll be ready.

STORM FORWARD KATIE SMITH:


On the final minute:
They got a big bucket and some little things, but it isn't always what happens at the end, it's an accumulation throughout the whole game. We had a couple of chances, whether it was to knock down a shot or getting a stop. They made a couple of plays and they're fighting for their lives to be on top in the East. But really it was about how people perform and our defensive mindset on how we wanted to guard them. I thought we played pretty well for the most part. It was a good bounce back, especially after coming off the road.

On fatigue from the road trip:
It was very hard. I'm not going to lie, I was very tired. But once we got moving and we got into the game we have a lot of pride in what we do individually and as a team. Speaking for myself, I was disappointed overall in our effort [on the road]. It wasn't like we weren't trying, but we have to lock in and get our momentum going in the right direction. I think everybody was looking for that and doing the best they can.

On whether the team can come together before the playoffs:
I hope so. We definitely have the talent and the pieces. We just have to make sure that on that given night and who we're playing we're doing what we need to do for that team. Every team is different. You want to take things away and attack them in certain ways. But I feel if we're all going in the same direction and our minds our set on the same things, by all means we're going to be a team to beat. We're excited about it. And tonight, even though we lost, it was a positive. We're looking forward to Tuesday and getting a couple more games under our belt towards the end and we'll see what happens.

CONNECTICUT HEAD COACH MIKE THIBAULT:
On the game:
We won an ugly basketball game. Their defense makes it ugly some nights. They make you have to work. We shot the ball so badly it's hard to believe we won. But we forced a bunch of turnovers. They don't turn the ball over like that when Sue plays so that has a lot to do with it, but we'll take the win. I thought that Mistie (Mims) and Tina (Charles) did a great job on the boards in stretches, especially at the end of the game where they didn't get a second shot. We had a lot of people not have good shooting nights tonight.

On Renee Montgomery drawing the foul that led to the winning free throws:
It's a little bit of skill, a little bit of luck and a little bit of bad defense on their part leaving their feet. It's what we yell at our players about. Luckily on the last play for them we didn't get drawn into one of those fouls. It was a good reminder at the timeout that we just drew one so don't get sucked into the same foul. It really helped us a lot and then Mistie got the rebound. That was big.

On losing an early lead:
We're trying to rest Tina. I don't want to play her 35 minutes. While I had her out they made their run. I probably should've put her back in a little sooner, but this has been a grind for her. Her playing 34 or 35 minutes right now is not productive for us in the long run. But tonight we needed a win so badly I tried to keep her in as long as I could in the second half. Obviously they exposed us a little bit during that run in the second quarter.

On playing the Storm short-handed:
Sometimes you might relax a little bit, but we know how good their other players are. Katie Smith, Tanisha (Wright) and all those guys, they've won championships. They know how to win. I respect a lot of what they've done. Some of the onus is on us to make shots we've been making, too, and we just didn't make them.

On Kara Lawson's three to cut the Storm's lead to one:
We had to work hard to get that one open, too. She made a good suggestion in the timeout to make an adjustment in the play and she came off open so it was good.

CONNECTICUT GUARD RENEE MONTGOMERY:
On the game:
It was a barn-burner. It was a tough game because Seattle executes very well on offense so you know if you mess up, they're going to make you pay for it. That's the toughest part about playing them.

On drawing a late foul:
I was going to take the shot, then I saw her jump. When somebody jumps in the air, it's tough - you have to draw the foul on them, especially in that situation where the shot clock is running down. I just saw her jump and went to draw a foul. I felt like I was at the line for like 30 minutes, but it's good to get into situations like that to prepare you for the playoffs and what's to come.

On whether the game was more difficult than she expected:
No, not at all. Absolutely not. We expected it to be tough. Right now, with four or five games left, all of the games are going to be tough. I don't care who's not playing. We don't have Asjha (Jones) and a lot of people forget that because we've been playing without her for so long, but that's an Olympian that we're missing. We're still hurting in a lot of categories, too. We expect every game to be tough.

CONNECTICUT CENTER TINA CHARLES:
On the game:
It was one of the ugliest games I've played in in my entire life. Just the turnovers they had, the turnovers we had. There was lot of things we tried to do in the huddle, but weren't able execute it coming out. It was really frustrating, especially when you're a No. 1 team and you're going into the playoffs. You don't want to have these lapses going into the playoffs. Everything needs to be smooth sailing. As far as execution goes, we need to be better.

On losing an early lead:
That's one of the things about us, we can get up but sometimes we can't hold that lead. It gets really frustrating.

On the foul Montgomery drew:
I've been seeing that. I've been playing with that girl since college days. She knows when it's crunch time. She just has this look in her eyes that she wants the ball in her hands and she can carry the team. That was no surprise to me. I was just happy she was the one with the ball in her hands.

CONNECTICUT GUARD KARA LAWSON:
On the late three she made:
They'd been playing a certain way the entire game so when he drew up the play, I knew how they were going to play it. Just wanted to alter that and we felt like we could catch them, and we did. It gave us an opening. It was nice to be open, to be honest, when I made that three. For us, down four with about 50 seconds left, I think. Obviously you hope to not be in that position, but if you just look at that isolated situation - down four, under a minute, on the road, it's a great win. We're 2-1 on this West Coast road trip, which is really positive. Any time you can be above .500 on the road is great. We're thrilled to be going home with two wins. We're home the last week of the season with a chance to clinch the top seed in the East so we're excited about the opportunity on Wednesday (vs. Indiana).

2012 Postgame Quotes/Notes Archive

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