March 20, 2009

Fresno State Coach Adrian Wiggins
“We’re very excited to be here. It’s our second time in a row so we have a little bit better understanding of what’s going on. At the same time we’re faced with a great opponent in Cal. That’s what we’ve been working toward all year. I know the players are excited and we feel like we’re prepared.”

On how they plan to match-up vs. Cal’s post players “Honestly, I don’t know that we do match up with them. They’re very big and love the high low game and to get the ball inside. Obviously we’ll have to be creative with that. At the same time, we have spent a lot of time on defense, so maybe we can do some things to keep them off rhythm.”

On how has the addition of Joh-Teena Filipe and LaShay Fears affected the team “They’ve made us better in a lot of ways. No. 1, for situations like this. Joh-Teena has played in this tournament before and won in it before. It’s not anything new or scary for her. LaShay has been a solid point guard for us. If you look at her statistics, they are somewhat deceptive, because she tends to score when she needs to. She doesn’t always feel like she has to. In the games when we need her to beat people off the floor and score, she can do it. Most of the time she’s comfortable sharing the ball and passing it.”

On his philosophy on taking so many three-pointers “The reality of the offense is that we take what people give us.  If they let us shoot three’s, we shoot three’s.  If they let us take it to the basket, we’ll do that.”

“We have a lot of confidence with it, but it is not all we are.  We do play defense and rebound, so that helps when we miss.”

On how he feels going up against a big zone “We’ve watched enough on film that (we know) they’ll try a couple different things. They’ll probably be like us and it’ll be somewhat of a boxing match at first and we’ll feel each other out to see what works and what doesn’t. I’m comfortable with anyone that will let us catch and shoot. If we get a chance to do that, that’ll be great. If we don’t, that’s what we’ve been working on for the past two months, how to deal with that. And I think we’ve got a lot better on putting the ball on the floor and getting to the hoop.

Fresno State guard Jaleesa Ross
On what experience from prior NCAA appearances gives to the team “We know the atmosphere is different than a regular conference game. It’s a lot more intense and we have more focus than last year.

On confidence going into the tournament
“This is a very big stage.  This year we are more focused on the game, not so much the atmosphere.”

Fresno State guard/forward Hayley Munro
On what experience from prior NCAA appearances gives to the team “It’s a different atmosphere and a higher level of play. It’s very quick, physical and I think we’ll be prepared this time.”

On confidence going into the tournament
“We have got more experience from last year.  We will be coming in with a bit more confidence knowing what to expect.”

Fresno State guard Joh-Teena Filipe
On what experience from prior NCAA appearances gives to the team “We know to not ever underestimate any team. Whether you are No. 1 nor 13, anything can happen in this tournament.”

On confidence going into the tournament
“I wasn’t here last year, but I feel like the team has a lot more confidence and we know what to expect as far as intensity.”

California Coach Joanne Boyle

On defending the 3-point threat of Fresno State

“Just playing in the Pac-10, we have a lot of great three point shooting teams.  Playing USC last week it kind of presented that problem to us.  But we worked on it this week and I think you just got to play it as a chess match a little bit; be able to get out there and defend the three.”

On California’s game-plan for Fresno State

“We are going to move the ball around a lot and get good touches, work to get one-on-one touches.  We are just going to do a combination of different things.”

On California’s lack of depth down the stretch

“It’s tournament time.  Everybody is playing 5, 6, 7 kids, you look at tournament time and everyone is playing that many kids.  Nobody is worrying about tired legs.  Nobody is feeling sorry for you.  Everyone is throwing their best game at you and you just have to be prepared and be ready to play.”

California forward/center Ashley Walker

On first round match-up with Fresno State

“We are excited to be here.  We are ready to play.  It’s great that it is a gym we have played in during the season, last week and the week before that. We have had our ups and downs, but you have to let that go and move on to the next part of the season.  The next most important game is Saturday.”

“It was a close game, so I am sure it will be a close game again here.  It is going to be a good game and we are just excited about being on the floor.”

California forward/center Devanei Hampton

On first round match-up with Fresno State

“We are all just amped up and ready to play.”

“It’s tournament time, we are about business.”

California guard Alexis Gray-Lawson

On first round match-up with Fresno State

“It was definitely a great travel for us, our family and friends get to come and support