Championship Final: Wisconsin Postgame QuotesApril 8, 2006

WISCONSIN COACH QUOTES

Wisconsin Head Coach Mike Eaves
Opening statement:
"Its hard to put into the words the spectrum of the journey that weve had here together. Talking about the beginning of the year and how things laid out in terms of having a chance to be in Green Bay for the Lambeau game and then the regionals and just the twists and turns it took to get here. And then to play in a game like this where it was just so hotly contested in every aspect. Youve got tremendous goaltenders, which is one of the reasons the game was the score that it was. Then the other thing is that I thought BC really made it difficult for us to do some things because of their competitiveness over the puck. They used their skill, their speed, their quickness and they were tough over the puck. I think for a little bit, that took us off our game and then we picked it up and carried on. The one thing guys kept saying on the bench is be patiently persistent. In a close game where you dont get rewarded with goals and assists very easily, you have to be patiently persistent. These young men stayed with it and the difference in the game was a specialty team goal and quite a shot by young Tommy (Gilbert) and a great set-up by his teammates. That was the difference in the game."

On comparing it to winning as a player:
"As a player you have such and emotional investment in the game in terms of the physical, mental and emotional that when you win its just this explosion. As we talked in the last press conference, when we won in 1977, from the time we won the game in overtime until I got in the locker room I dont remember a dang thing on the ice. I saw pictures laterI dont remember that! It was such a euphoric high that I lost a lot. But being on the ice this time as a coach it was fun to be very cognizant of what was going on and hug each one of those guys and look them in the eye and say job well done or lets come back. Its an intimate moment if you talk about it that way. That was really fun. I enjoyed this one because I can remember it."

On the home-ice advantage:
"Well I learned something too. Ive been to a couple Frozen Fours and I really didnt think that would happen. Somehow, those wacky Wisconsin fans found a way to get tickets. It was truly an emotional energizer. The kids talked about it. They wanted to give them a reason to cheer. It was a phenomenal atmosphere. As a coach it was fun to be a part of."

Interview Room Quotes - National Championship Game

Senior defensemen Tom Gilbert
Comment on third period goal:
"I actually had two& a pass from Pavelski and then a pass from Dowell in the slot. I was thinking to myself I am not going to strikeout three times. Joe Pavelski made a great pass to me and I just buried my head. I knew the puck was going to go in. I cant describe how I feel.

Junior goaltender Brian Elliott
Did you actually hear the puck hit the post at the end of the game:
"I didnt hear it. I knew there was only a couple seconds left and I knew I had the short side& all they had was the far side. Hopefully if it was any closer I would have got a pad on it. Posts are your best friends and I got one tonight.

Junior forward Robbie Earl
Tell us about your score:
"I got upended in the neutral zone and hurt my shoulder a little bit. I was actually heading off to the bench and we got a turnover. Joe Pavelski went the other way and I decided to take a chance. I went to the net and it was a great pass by Adam Burish. That is the story of this year& hardwork and going to the net.

Tom Gilbert
What does it feel like to have the program back to the top of the college hockey world?:
"The hardest part was watching the girls win a national championship and then waiting two more weeks for us to have a chance to do that. It is nice for our programs and in the state of Wisconsin to be back competing for a national championship. It is something we work for all year. It is hard work and dedication that got us here.

The Bradley Center Milwaukee, Wis. Postgame Locker Room Quotes

WISCONSIN LOCKER ROOM QUOTES

Senior forward Ryan MacMurphy
On the teams national title run:
"Its a storybook ending and a Cinderella story. We hadnt won anything our whole four years. Looking at the schedule, you saw the Green Bay Regional and Milwaukee with the national championship. We wanted to be there so bad. We knew it would be a great sea of red fans. It was everything it lived up to be in our dreams and we got it done with blood, sweat and tears. Were just a hard-working bunch of guys, competitive guys and we got it done."

On sitting alone at his locker during the teams celebration:
"Ive still got mixed emotions here. I dont want to take my jersey off yet. Four years: its been a long road, but hey, we won our last game for the senior guys and thats all you can ask for. Im just so proud of everyone in this room and we got it done."

Sophomore forward Joe Pavelski
On the final seconds of the game:
"I was dead tired, but that wasnt anything. It was just something youre trying to gut out. You heard three, two, one and then all of a sudden it couldnt come fast enough, just like the rest of the game. Im sure Elliott got a piece of it, knowing him. It was just a shot, you saw it get tipped, and youre just like Oh, please."

On the teams penalty killing:
"We got so much energy from it in the first game Thursday night. It was unbelievable. The fans just fed off it and fed off it and brought so much more energy to this team. Our teams battled so much and played so hard and competed so hard that we like those challenges. Thats what the building block of this team was the competitiveness and the challenges we wanted to step up and face them."

On his assist on the game-winning goal:
"In the second period we threw up an interchange at them and they didnt know what to do. They started running at us, so were like, lets go down low and throw it right back at them. They came out and they were fading, I kind of gave a look to Earl, they both kind of collapsed and Tom was just sitting there. I just zipped the pass to him and he had plenty of time. He picked his spot and just hit it."

Senior forward Adam Burish
On growing up with and playing for the Badgers:
"We had season tickets. I went to every game that was going on...I always wanted to play for the Badgers, I always wanted to be a captain and always wanted to win a national championship. We accomplished all three of those."