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March 6, 2015

Sue Semrau

Shakayla Thomas


Florida State – 82
Virginia Tech - 43

SUE SEMRAU:  Just want to compliment Virginia Tech and how much they battled, not just today but gosh, those last two games.  Got to give them a ton of credit.  For a really young team, only losing one player.
I was really proud of my team, proud of the contributions that we got off the bench.  Shakayla playing in her first ACC game and going 8 for 10 is pretty impressive.
The other thing, you look at the stat sheet and what you don't see is a lot of credit going to Brittany Brown and Morgan Jones, and those two played tremendous defense.  Morgan did a great job of getting the ball to the right people, and a lot of times you don't see that.  I just want to give them as much credit as the rest of the team.

Q.  Sue, what about your defense made it a tough shooting night for Virginia Tech?
SUE SEMRAU:  I'll tell you, our defense was really tough tonight.  They communicated.  They knew what was coming.  We've defended all kinds of sets all year, and really, it took being very locked in.  Virginia Tech, I think, does a tremendous job of running their stuff, and they don't usually turn the ball over, and so to force 17 turnovers was really big for us.

Q.  What did you think the Hokies had a kind of fatigue with the three games in three days?
SUE SEMRAU:  Absolutely, I don't know how you couldn't.  You look at Vanessa and how many minutes she had to play in each of those games, and she's the one that makes them go.  She didn't play in the first game against us, and so we knew that we had our hands full with her on the floor, and so again, that's where you credit really Brittany Brown and Emiah Bingley, who I think did a tremendous job on her.

Q.  Shakayla, on the flipside, it was a good offensive day for your team.  What helped you guys click so well on offense tonight?
SHAKAYLA THOMAS:  I think our communication was the key to all of this.  We talked on defense with led the offense, so the communication was basically the main key.

Q.  Dennis Wolff described Florida State as a Final Four‑type team.  Is this the year Florida State plays in the ACC Championship Game, and what does it take to advance through tomorrow's round and get to Sunday?
SUE SEMRAU:  I think that this is a team that needs to rest tonight and focus and figure out who we play tomorrow, and that's as far as we look.  We know that every single game is tough, and we know that every team in this conference deserves our full attention.

Q.  When you're at your best, what do we see?
SUE SEMRAU:  A great rebounding team, a tremendous defensive team, and a team that really has a lot of unity.  You've got 13 players that 12 of them got minutes tonight, and one didn't because she's retired.  They just do a great job of encouraging one another and celebrating each other's success.

Q.  Sue, you only had 59 points in the first meeting in Blacksburg.  Obviously you didn't have your All‑ACC center in that game because of a concussion, but anything else to explain the higher output by your offense tonight?
SUE SEMRAU:  Well, I just said to our staff, gosh, what a different game from when we played them the first time.  It's tough to play in Blacksburg, and I thought we came out very slow, lethargic, and I thought that was credit to Virginia Tech and the way that they like to slow down the pace.  We knew that we had to increase the pace tonight in order to be successful.

Q.  How do you go about preparation in a tournament setting in regards to tomorrow's game with not really knowing who you're going to play until a couple hours and then only having a few hours until the game starts?
SUE SEMRAU:  Well, it's everybody's in that situation, and we have scouted both of the teams.  We'll be prepared to give a scouting report tonight on whichever team is victorious and get some rest and get up and prepare for them tomorrow.

Q.  What helped you click on offense tonight, and also, just the‑‑ you guys took control of that game pretty early.  What helped you guys seize control of that game in the opening stretch there?
SHAKAYLA THOMAS:  Being on the same page as my teammates.  I have to read off of what they're doing, and I just go in and do whatever they need me to do.
SUE SEMRAU:  Shakayla gives us tremendous pace.  I don't know that I have coached an athlete of her caliber.  To be able to get her up and down the floor, and she's not only fast but she's powerful, and she really helps us to establish that tempo.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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