No. 8 seed DePaul vs. No. 9 seed South Florida
Game 6 – Second Round, March 3, 2012
XL Center – Hartford, Conn.
DePaul Postgame Quotes
Head Coach Doug Bruno
“I am really proud of our women here. They have been very good in January, February, and March. They have also been inconsistent so for them to have the understanding of the moment and time that they really needed to play well, I was very proud of the way they came out. We had an 11-0 start which was important. We know that USF is too good that we wouldn’t be able to come back, so we needed every one of those first 11 points. The young woman sitting next to me (Anna Martin) is the first recruit I can remember having from Kentucky and it is a pretty simple concept that they have down in Kentucky: They don’t recruit their athletes, they breed their athletes. Therefore they also understand that when that bell sounds and the horses come out of the gates, it is the horses that are running and the coaches are sitting on the sidelines. Anna has done a great job of leading this basketball team and she has been the horse down the stretch. I also want to make sure I compliment the other player on our team, Deanna Ortiz, the lone senior on our team. I thought she did a pretty good job on Inga Orekhova, a very tough player to guard. Fellow junior Katherine Harry had double digit rebounds and our younger players have been a great group to coach.”
Coach it is such a short roster. How do you approach a game on defense trying to be physical but also avoiding foul trouble?
“If we weren’t short, we still wouldn’t want to be in foul trouble and we still don’t want to commit errors. One thing that we work on at DePaul is not fouling. Some coaches believe that fouls are to be used but I am one of those coaches who believe they are not. We are not going out there trying to use 5 fouls by three different centers on somebody else’s center. One thing we try to do all the time is stay clean and avoid trouble.”
With so many minutes played by your starters, how are you going to approach the next game?
“There’s no way to go do anything on the floor. We’ll get some food on the bus and have study table, because it is the end of a quarter for us and exams are coming up. Players will study with our academic advisors. They are 3rd in the nation academically for a reason and I never miss an opportunity to drop that in because that is them, it’s not me. They will have dinner and by 10 p.m everything else will be between the ears. There is no way were are going to get them up in the morning and even try to walk through what Notre Dame does.”
Junior Guard Anna Martin
When you look back to the beginning of this season and then now with the injuries, how have you had to change your mindset to become a true leader on this team?
“I came into the season knowing I had to step up initially just because we did have a lot of inexperience and youth. Keisha Hampton was an All-American and a senior, but Katherine Harry and myself were the only juniors. From the beginning I knew I had to step up at the guard position but once the injuries started to pile up, it was hard. I just tried to stay positive and I feel like if I stay positive and motivate, the others will follow.”
USF Postgame Quotes
Head Coach Jose Fernandez
“DePaul is a very good basketball team and they had a kid that had a really special night tonight in Anna Martin and it seemed like we could never get a stop in the second half. When we did get stops we could never trim down that lead. As far as us losing Sasha Bernard at point guard I thought Kaneisha Saunders and Shalethia Stringfield did a very good job taking care of the ball. We only had six turnovers for the game so that wasn’t the problem, we just flat out didn’t defend like we have all season long. DePaul got whatever they wanted offensively and we did gamble. They made us pay with open shots or dribble penetration and we didn’t rotate very well when the ball went into the post. I have to hand it to them they shot a big number and they made shots.”
How much of this do you contribute to the quick turnaround?
“I don’t think you can attribute to it much I mean DePaul plays seven guys. We play in so many tournaments during the year we opened up the season playing three games back-to-back-to-back, we’ve gone to Alaska and played back-to-back games. We’ve played 10 of our 14 non-conference games on the road. We’ve traveled more than any Division I basketball team in the country. So I wouldn’t attribute that to it. We played a lot more people than they did so I wouldn’t use that as an excuse. For one reason or another they were able to go by us and put it down on the floor, just drive it by us. Of course you would like more time to prepare. The game was totally different at our place during the season, it was a great game and an overtime win for us. Hand it to (DePaul), they executed and when they needed to make shots they made shots. They never let us crawl back into things because we had our chances. We had stringed three or four stops together but we’d go empty on the other end.”