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Kentucky-Alcorn State Postgame Quotes




Dec. 28, 2012

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Kentucky Head Coach Matthew Mitchell

Opening statement …
"Good win for the Wildcats tonight. Really happy we were able to come back from the break and play with tremendous effort. You never know, sometimes we haven't been able to do that. I was very encouraged with our practice sessions leading up to the game and they were able to carry that to the floor, so we talked about that before the game. We wanted to carry the play on the practice floor to the floor and I thought we did a good job of that. I am really happy we got another victory at Memorial Coliseum and we are going to really have to get focused for a quick turn-around for a really good Marist team that we play here on Sunday."

On the focus of the team after the Christmas break ...
"I was very happy with that. I thought in the first half Samarie Walker and Bria Goss really set the tone with their effort and their hustle. They were very good in the first half and I thought the team had a lot of bright spots tonight, so I was happy we were able to get the win."

On the level of play overall in this game …
"I thought the players really hung in there and hustled all night, and that's why the margin ended up what it ended up being. Those are not easy things to do. It is not easy to win games like that. You just have to keep improving and hustling really hard. I saw some improvements in the second half. We shot the ball better in the second half, we took care of the ball better in the second half, so that's not a sign of it being easy, it's a sign of the players buckling down and I'm happy with the win."

On allowing a school-record low 23 points …
"We had some really good moments defensively. I thought Alcorn State really had a tough time around the bucket and I think we were fortunate with that tonight because they got to the bucket a few times tonight and it just wouldn't go down for them. You have to credit our players for working hard and trying hard and hustling hard for the full 40 minutes and that's what we will always want to do and we are really pleased with that. Anytime you do something that hasn't been done before you have to tip your hat to the players. I don't care who you're playing, it's tough to only give up 23 points. It's a good job tonight."

On the play of DeNesha Stallworth
"She is really important. I was sort of fussing at her during the game, because I didn't think she was playing all that well and then you look at her stat line and it's really something else. I thought she was not aggressive enough shooting the ball, but she is so talented in getting people the ball, that she really got after it. She asserted herself on the boards and ends up with a double-double and seven assists. She is a really talented player, really good player playing well right now and it's really valuable, especially with some of the struggles we have at point guard right now, which I think will get corrected."

On the injury to Maegan Conwright
"Maegan unfortunately tore her ACL, and she will be done for the season and we are real sad about that. We will I know do a great job giving her support for rehab and that surgery and get her back on to a healthy track. I know that I have a lot of confidence in our medical team to help her out, but it's a really unfortunate thing for her. It's tough for our team. Maegan is a tough, veteran player who has played well in the SEC and played some tough defense for us. We were hoping we would have her to do that for us, but we won't, so it will be tough for us to absorb that. Everyone is going to have to pick up the slack there, but disappointing news to say the least."

Kentucky Players

#1, A'dia Mathies, Sr., G

On how it helps to win by such a large margin…
"I think when we play games like this we get to focus on the little things more as far as if we feel we are better than them man-to-man then we focus on not letting them focus on their strengths like getting to the basket since they are so small. Just doing little things like that and focusing on rebounding will carry us farther along."

#23, Samarie Walker, Jr., F

On how it helps to win by such a large margin…
"We just have to stay focused on just what we're doing and not be concerned with the opponent until it comes to that time."

On the difficulty staying focused on games like this…
"It's not very hard for us to stay focused. We have been taught whoever the opponent is, just stay focused and play hard."

On how she was able to be so successful on the evening…
"It was a struggle for me in the beginning, offensively but my teammates encouraged me and pushed me to continue to work hard. They were pretty undersized in the post and it wasn't that hard for me to score and get rebounds."

Alcorn State Head Coach Tonya Edwards

On how tough it is to lose by such a large margin…
"It is, especially when your team goes out there and basically gets manhandled. It's extremely unfortunate to see especially after you've been working for months and you don't see the fight and the physicality that you hope for during the course of the game. That was extremely disappointing for us as well as not hitting the boards, not boxing out, doing the little things and taking care of the basketball. They were able to pretty much score at will on us. We turned it over, especially in the open court and allowed them fast break opportunities."

On Kentucky's defensive pressure…
"Well, you have to give credit to Kentucky. They played great pressure defense and didn't let up. They were relentless on the defensive end. No matter who came in the game for them, you felt their pressure out there on the floor. We just have to do a better job of taking care of the basketball."

On having 36 turnovers…
"Way too many. We talk about pride of possession all the time, taking care of the basketball because that's 36 opportunities we don't get to score. You have to take pride in taking care of the basketball and I don't care who you're playing. You have to take care of the ball, that's number one."

On preparing for conference play…
"As I go back and look at our nine games, I would hope that our non-conference schedule has prepared us for what we can expect in SWAC play. Hopefully we can dial up our intensity and just play more aggressive, more aggressive for 40 minutes. Just like I was telling our young ladies, Kentucky, yes, when they're up they put their foot on your throat and that's what you have to do. Anytime you're up on an opponent, you want to keep them down. That's something that we didn't do in games early on in the season that hopefully we learned from them tonight. That's what we need to do."

On Carolinsia Crumbly's performance…
"Carolinsia is one of our more talented ladies and I expect for her to pick up her numbers.
It wasn't one of her better nights but I look forward to her dialing up in SWAC play and just continuing to play hard. That's one young lady who's always going to play extremely hard and do whatever she can out there on the court for you."

Alcorn State Player

#10, Isis Smith, G

On losing by such a large margin…
"It's frustrating but it's something that I have to get through. It's like every other game."

On having played opponents like Kentucky…
"Similar. We played against Tennessee and they were a tough opponent."

On Kentucky's defense…
"Their pressure was good. We didn't handle it as a team but it's something we could've handled if we stayed focused and matched their intensity."


 

 

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