March 20, 2009

 


UCSB Head Coach Lindsay Gottlieb:
Opening statement:
“I would like to thank the fine people of San Diego State who have already done a great job hosting. We’re excited to be here. and we’re incredibly proud to represent the Big West Conference. I personally am very honored with these three incredible student athletes. We’re looking forward to a great game tomorrow night. Obviously we have a formidable opponent in Stanford and we’re looking forward to the great challenge that lies ahead of us.”
On the depth of the bench and combating Stanford’s size:
“They are the biggest team that we’ve faced, and they may be the biggest team in the country. I think our depth has been a good thing for us and I’ve had plenty of options this year to match up with teams in different ways, which is a luxury as a coach. I think we have looked at bigger lineups. We’ve looked at utilizing Kat (Suderman), along with Jenna (Green). Certainly Chris (Spencer) gives us more size on the wing and Meagan Williams gives us a little more size on the wing, so those are things that we look at all the time. We also have to recognize game flow and what’s working for us. So we definitely have some of those options available.”
UC Santa Barbara Senior Guard Sha’Rae Gibbons:
On her previous tournament experience:
“I was up here last year and that puts it into a different perspective when you’ve kind of gone through the things behind the scenes, talking to people and the media and the press. I think for me, it’s come down to that. It’s about forty minutes and one basketball game and that’s all that matters in the end, especially for us seniors. All you got to live for right now is 40 minutes. So I’m excited. I want to win, I came here to win, I came here to play hard and leave everything out there.”
On adjustments with the new staff:
“I think it was tough in the beginning. I think Lauren could probably speak to this more than anyone because I was out for the first half of the season. I think the adjustment with Coach G coming in and a whole new staff coming in has been probably the smoothest of any that I have known. I think if you take what she brings and what her staff has brought along with the returners that we have, it has been really smooth. I think that’s all you can ask for when you bring in such a different staff with the position that we were in. Lauren can speak about the actual playing part.”
UC Santa Barbara senior center Jenna Green:
On playing for UCSB for six years:
“It’s a very special feeling. Not many freshmen can say they came into collegiate basketball and say that they’ve been to the Sweet Sixteen, which is obviously the furthest our program has gotten. That was an amazing experience playing against and with some of the best college players. And for each year after that to be in the postseason has given me so much experience, and that’s something that I think I can bring to the team. To finish out my sixth year back in the NCAA Tournament is a great feeling and I just hope that we can come out with a victory. ”
On matchup against Stanford’s Jayne Appel:
“Obviously you have a veteran in (Jayne) Appel, so I’m very excited to match up against her. You always want to play against the best and I feel that I’m going to have that challenge and have that opportunity tomorrow at the game. I’m excited to play such great post players and that’s all you can ask for in college basketball. I’m excited and up for the challenge.”
UC Santa Barbara senior guard Lauren Pedersen:
On adjustments with the new staff:
“It’s been a learning process for us. A new offense, new coaches, a new philosophy about things. I think we did a pretty good job adjusting to that.”
On being worried:
“No, you take each game as it comes. Obviously, you want to have a better record than we did, but that was how it was and you take every game with a new sense of willingness to get better and learn.”

Stanford University Head Coach Tara VanDerveer:
Opening statement :
“It’s really hard to believe it’s this time already. Our team is very excited and I think we are ready as
as we can be. Our focus is totally on (UC) Santa Barabara and getting ready for this excellent team.
Lindsay (Gottlieb) is coaching and doing a great job. I think we just want to continue to play well and
just keep improving through the tournament. Obviously, it’s one game and you’re done, so we know
we need to play very well tomorrow.”
On last year and this year’s tournament:
“Every year there is a favorite team going into the tournament. Connecticut has had a great season and
to go undefeated is a tremendous accomplishment; congratulations to them. This is a new season. I
think last year at this time, Connecticut was a probably a favorite also, and that’s just a reflection that
they have a terrific program. Our focus is on Santa Barbara and playing well and doing the best we
can. I think if it was just (based) on the numbers you could hand one team a trophy- but that’s not how
it’s done. You have to come out and play six great games to win a national championship. Our team
played five great games last year, we want to have six great games this year. In order to have six, you
have to take care of business at No 1 and that’s our focus. We are very confident and we feel like we
are playing well. And like Jeanette (Pohlen) said, we have a lot of room to improve, too.”
Stanford University Junior Forward Jayne Appel:
On playing in the NCAA tournament:
“I think we’re all excited. We didn’t realize how fast it was going to go from last year. Everyday we’re
just coming out just trying to practice and work harder, because we know that we won’t be satisfied
unless we get into the championship game. I think our goal is just to take it one day at a time.”
Stanford University Freshman Forward Nnemkadi Ogwumike:
On the tournament:
“It’s my first NCAA Tournament, of course, I’ve been a little nervous, but I feel it’s more anxiousness
and excitement because my team went to it last year and they just said it was the experience of a lifetime.
I feel that to be able to share that expirience with them this year will also be amazing. All of the
other experience that we have been encountering this year have been fantastic. At this point, everything
is for the team, and we do everything together to try to accomplish what we need to.”
Stanford University Sophomore Guard Jeanette Pohlen:
On playing in the tournament:
“I think first and foremost, as young as we are this year, I think we have a lot of potential and a lot of
expirience coming back from last year’s team. We have a lot of young players who maybe don’t know
what it’s like to be in the NCAA tournament yet, but we also have a bunch of leaders on our team who
are showing them the way.”
On the familiarity with UCSB:
“Going over their stuff and preparing for them like (Coach VanDerveer) was just saying, we should
know a lot of this. It shouldn’t take too long to figure out what is going to happen and what they look
for, so it has helped us a lot. We run the same offense so we know what they are going to throw at us
and they probably know what we are going to throw at them. I think what (Coach VanDerveer) said,
it’s just going to be who comes out and plays the hardest and comes out and plays their best.”