Kentucky-UC Santa Barbara Postgame Quotes

Dec. 21, 2008

Recap | Box Score | Notes | Photo Gallery 

Kentucky Head Coach Matthew Mitchell

Opening Statement ...
"This win is a great way for us to go into our holiday break. I am thrilled to get this victory. UC Santa Barbara has a great program and I thought that they played really hard and never gave up today. The key to the win was the way we came out and played well early. We put UC Santa Barbara in a situation where it was going to be difficult for them to win by the way we played early. We did a good job withstanding any run they could put together and I am really happy that we are going into Christmas break with a victory."

On what it means to him to have Eleia Roddy's name mentioned with Valerie Still ...
"It is tremendous. For it to be the first time in 25 years for a player to record four straight double-doubles says a lot about the player that goes out and does that. When you get as much attention as Eleia does on the floor, to score can be a difficult thing to do. She has to work extremely hard every game. She can't get discouraged and she has to take coaching adjustments. Not only do you have to be physically tough to do something like that but you have to be mentally tough as well. Rebounding is important too, because in our league and the schedule that we play it can be a tough thing. She has rebounded well against some tough teams and it says a lot about her willingness to work."

On Amani Franklin's play in the first half ...
"What was so great about her play in the first half was for her to come out and make shots and give everybody else confidence. When a player gets on a roll like that it gives all of us confidence that we can score and get the job done, too. I will take 20 points from Amani in the first half every time. If she scored 20 points a game we would be in great shape. I am really happy with her play in the first half."

On the difference between Kentucky's strong start tonight and some poor starts in the past ...
"We talked about was showing them (UCSB) in the first four minutes our desire to compete today. We wanted to show them that they were up against a team that wanted to win badly today. I hope that we can always set a tone in the first four minutes that we are going to attack and play hard and we got out to a terrific start today. I credit the players on getting that done today."

Kentucky Players

Eleia Roddy, #1

On if Franklin's shooting in the first half opened things up for her inside ...
"Yes it did open things up and I was very excited when she started hitting those shots. It was great to get up big and knock them out of the game in the first half. They were double-teaming me, so it was great for our outside players to knock down some shots."

On the difference between Kentucky's strong start tonight and some poor starts in the past ...
"I think that we were just fired up and we wanted to get on them early. We were determined to do that today."

On what it means to her be mentioned with Valerie Still...
"I am very happy, because I have been injured so many years and it hurts not being able to have four years to play. To finally be able to be in the record books is something that I'm happy about. I know that my hard work is paying off."

Amani Franklin, #25

On her not taking a shot in the second half ...
"(Laughter) I don't really know. I just have to be more aggressive and try to get some shots up. All that matters is that we are going home with the win. That is the most important thing. Coach told me to be more aggressive and that is something that I didn't do well in the second half. Everybody around me stepped up in the second half. Like I said, we got the win and that is the most important thing."

On what it feels like to score 20 points in a half ...
"You just get into a zone. It seems like the basket is wide open and I was able to knock down some shots."

On how important it was for Kentucky to get off to a quick start ...
"It all started with our defensive pressure, getting up and pressing them full court was important. We were able to get some turnovers and that led to easy transition baskets. That was key for us today."

UCSB Head Coach Lindsay Gottlieb

On the game…
"Kentucky shot the ball very well. It was not our game plan to give up abunch of three-point shots. We started playing a zone and that helped us geta bunch of stops. Kentucky was very hot for a while and we didn't make the adjustmentsquick enough at the beginning of the game to slow down their attack."

On UCSB's shooting…
"Once we started getting some stops on defense we started having troubleknocking down shots on offense. We got the ball where we wanted and had somegreat looks. It was a bad combination of having the looks we wanted at the basket,but not making our shots. After the game we talked about taking advantage ofthe stops we made and capitalize. We will not beat good teams if we can't dothat."

On Kentucky's defense…
"We didn't have a lot of one-on-one advantages. A lot of our players didn'tget the shots they were looking for because of Kentucky's defense. When we executedon offense the way we wanted to,then we had the opportunities to score. Therewere many times today that our execution broke down. Defensively, Kentucky wasa very good team."