Kentucky-Coker College Postgame Quotes

Nov. 6, 2011

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Kentucky Head Coach Matthew Mitchell

On today's game...
"We were happy to get the season started and that was a much-needed game for us. I'd like to compliment Coker. I thought it was very special having Jenny (Finora) come back and coach a team here on the court where she played so many great games. I was very impressed with how prepared her team was and how in-shape they were. I'm just really hoping Coker College has a great year. Hats off to them, they gave us a good test today. Clearly, we did some good things and I think the exhibition games are all about trying to find out things you need to work on as well, and there are plenty of things we need to work on. All in all, I'm just glad to have this experience under our belt and I'm excited to get the season started on Friday."

On the message for the team going into the second half...
"I think the players did a good job before the game talking about what we had emphasized in practice, and some intangible things. They had talked about being physical and working hard and being aggressive. I just thought we got up to a pretty big lead and that just started to crumble. When we started, the big message was to not let our offensive woes (get to us). We were missing so many layups there, don't let those effect us on defense with our energy. As you can see, our defense is based all on energy and effort. I thought that we got discouraged because we made some poor plays on offense and Coker got energized there at the end of the half. We were just talking about how we really were going to be disappointed if we didn't play harder than Coker in the second half. I thought we came out on a pretty good run to start the half."

On his preferred style of play...
"The thing we've focused on a lot in practice is just trying to create that pace and that's difficult to do. I just told the team, there were times in the game where I was very frustrated with some things that happened and it was not a masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination. But, I don't care who you're playing. It takes a lot of energy to create 40 turnovers. That is a good sign for our team. All of the things I was disappointed in today were rebounding and some of our half-court rotations on defense can be addressed by practice. A lot of that is on me. A lot of that is the coaches constructing a practice plan so they have enough time to work on things. The things we've worked on are trying to create a frenetic pace and create some chaos for the other team. I thought those things were okay today."

 On creating the frenetic pace...
"We practice that way every day. Every day that is the way we practice. We don't slow down a lot. Where you'd see some breakdowns in some half-court situations, we're not in a lot of those situations in practice. It is constant up and down. It is a pretty tough situation every day in practice so there is only one way to get it done in my mind and that is to practice that way every day. This team is doing a pretty good job of that."

Kentucky Players

#24, Amber Smith, Sr., PG

On returning for her first game...
"It felt really good.  I was excited just to be on the court with my teammates and to play in front of a great fan base.  It was awesome."

On her flashes of good plays...
"I just want to make plays for my teammates and help us win. That's all I am worried about."

On Coach Mitchell's talk at halftime...
"He was very positive. He let us know what we were doing well and what we needed to work on. He told us that we needed to come out with the same energy that we did in the first four minutes and not have any let downs."

#13, Bria Goss, Fr., G

On the team's effort today...
"It felt great. The crowd was into it. Just for an exhibition game, I felt that we had a good crowd.  The energy from all of our players was good. It was everything I expected when I first got here. Playing in this type of environment was fun."

On how much family and friends were in attendance...
"My mom and my sister were here. Today is my sister's birthday so she decided to come see me play in my first game. I'm really excited to see them."

Coker College Head Coach Jenny Pfeiffer Finora

On what it's like to be back at UK...
"It's great. There's nothing better than Kentucky fans. They're welcoming as always. It just felt really good to be back."

On her thoughts on UK's team this year...
"They're going to be really good this year. It was a good challenge for us and I'm glad our kids got the opportunity to do this. I wish Kentucky the best of luck. I hope to see them in the Final Four and all the way. I think they have a lot of talented kids and the sky is the limit for them."