March 23, 2009


Head Coach Bill Fennelly

Opening Statement:
“We are not overlooking Ball State and we are not disappointed in playing Ball State.  We know exactly what we are up against and the next 40 minutes are the most important of this season for us, especially when you are playing to go to the Sweet 16.  If anyone watched the game last night, you saw what a great team Ball State is.  I coached in the MAC for seven years and I know exactly what their mindset is and how they are going to play.  We have no excuses and we are ready to go.  We are going to play the game the way we should play it.  Hopefully it will be good enough to win.”

On Ball State’s team now:
“We have a lot of tapes on Ball State.  With the technology today you can get a lot of stuff.  I think the biggest thing about Ball State now versus at the beginning of the year is that they are defending a lot better.  They are more energized.  They can score and we don’t play many teams that have four people averaging in double figures.  They shoot the three great and they are an outstanding free throw shooting team.
Offensively, their balance is an issue.  You can’t be in a position where you let anyone shoot.  You look at their numbers and they held Tennessee to 55 points and in the MAC Tournament the scores were lower, so I their defensive numbers are a little higher than you would expect.
  When you win 12 games in a row you are playing with an amazing amount of confidence and an amazing amount of energy.  To have coached in the MAC as long as I did I understand the enthusiasm that they are playing with and the effort that they are going to give in the underdog role.
As I said to our team, everyone thought that we were going to have to compete against the Queen but now we have to play Cinderella, and that’s what I told them.  That’s what we have to try and do and we understand what is at stake.  That game last night was not a fluke.  Anyone that watched it knows that Ball State played very, very well.  They did all the good things that you would expect a good team to do.”

On Ball State’s guard play:
“Anytime you have a good team at this time of year you talk about guard play.  Their guard play is really, really good.  I think they took Tennessee off the bounce a lot and Porchia Green has the quickness of other guards that we have seen this year.  When people spread you out and shoot the three like they do, it is hard to guard.  The biggest thing that we have to tell our players is to be fundamental in their approach individually.  There’s not going to be a lot of helping going on when you have five players on the court that can score.  That is a different game plan than if we would have played Tennessee.  That is what this time of year is about.  We are very, very lucky to have kids that are smart and we can put a game plan in in a day and a half.  They are going to know how they need to play and are going to play hard.  If it works then we’ll have a chance.  That’s the way we’ve done it all year.”

Amanda Nisleit, Forward, Freshman, #32

On Ball State:
“We go the opportunity to watch the first half at the arena and when we got back we watched it.  Ball State has a great team and they play really hard.  They have some good shooters and some good drivers.  They are an all-around good basketball team.”

On expecting Tennessee to come back against Ball State:
“It’s the first round in the NCAA Tournament and every team is a good team.  You never know what to expect.  Personally, I knew that they were both great teams so I just rushed back to the hotel to see what had happened.”

Nicky Wieben, Forward, Senior, #5

On the opportunity of advancing to the Sweet 16:
“I think it would mean a lot to the whole team, especially to the whole program in general for us to represent the school and make it to the Sweet 16.  We’ve always been a team to take it one game at a time so we are coming into this game very seriously.  We are just really excited to play.”

On Ball State:
“Their enthusiasm was really high last night.  We are going to come in ready to go.  We have to take it four minutes at a time and come out and play just as excited as they are.”


Head Coach Kelly Packard

Opening Statement:
“Obviously I think the biggest challenge in the last 15 or 16 hours was to allow our young ladies to enjoy their phenomenal victory over Tennessee.  It is a shame that we couldn’t live in that moment a little bit longer.  To shift gears, obviously to realize that accomplishment means a little more preparation and more scouting and more film and more on the court focus.  I think we scrambled a little as a staff last night and watched as much film as our eyes would stay open for and get back at it again this morning.  We threw all hands on deck for Tennessee quite honestly and all hands are on deck right now for a very different team and a very talented team.  The things we have to focus on, however, defensively are much different than the things we had to focus on defensively last night.  Work is not done and we have more to accomplish and more to cover in our shoot around tomorrow for Iowa State.”

On the biggest concerns for the upcoming game:
“There are two things.  The first is that we need to somehow adjust to the emotion as to what we have just been through.  There isn’t a way to process that quickly and I think for us it will be talking about it and making sure that we realize that we still have the rest of this academic year to stick together as a group and relive some of the moments.  Now is not the time to relive all of those so we have to focus.  That will be a concern that we can emotionally process and position ourselves tomorrow night at tip time.  The second one would be the extreme difference in preparation.  Last night we were worried about containing drivers and the lob passes and the mismatches with our guards being posted up.  Now all the sudden we face a team that shoots the ball very well one through five.  We’ll also see different screening action than we saw last night and screening actions that even involve their post players.  So the preparation part concerns me but yet our focus was good and we’ll cover some more ground tomorrow.”

On her reception following the Tennessee game:
“I don’t think I’ll be on David Letterman.  I feel very uncomfortable and I don’t really treasure the attention.  I haven’t scored a bucket and I haven’t gotten a rebound.  I have a talented staff so quite honestly it is a little uncomfortable for me.  I just keep trying to turn the attention to them (the players).  They are the ones that scored the buckets and they made the plays.  Kiley Jarrett has thrown her body all over the floor.  I think you can give them strategy and give them pieces yet they have to go out and believe in those pieces and turn around and execute those things.”

On being called a Cinderella team by Iowa State head coach:
“I think we are.  I think we definitely are Cinderella.  I think because we have never done this before and we’ve never been to the NCAA Tournament.  That in itself makes us a Cinderella.  Being a 12 seed also qualifies us as a Cinderella and what happened last night that is certainly Cinderella.”

Audrey McDonald, Guard, Junior, #33

On calls after the win over Tennessee:
“I think the tally for the leader of the team of text messages was 33 right after the game.  Obviously, we have a ton of people who support and care about us.  All of the texts were genuinely very supportive and congratulatory or our success last night.”

Porchia Green, Guard, Senior, #3

On being called a Cinderella team:
“I love the Cinderella name.  Big things come from being a Cinderella.
I think about George Mason a few years ago when they were the Cinderella story and they went far.  So I take that as a compliment.”

On getting focused to play before the game:
“We have a little quiet time where we get serious.  The staff and players all get in a circle and take it all in and take deep breaths.
You just think to yourself and it is just quiet time to get focused.  We have leaders and captains and teammates that get us going.”

Emily Maggert, Forward, Sophomore, #41

On beating Tennessee:
“I didn’t go to sleep until probably one or two last night.  We went out to eat after the game and then went back to the hotel room and started calming down.  We watched ESPN to see what everyone was saying and looked on the internet.”

On the team’s success:
“I think it is our overall chemistry.  We just get along so well together both on and off the court.  We put our differences aside and we play as a team, which is obvious.  In the past six weeks we’ve been building confidence and it is showing in how we play.”