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March 3, 2016

Paige Crozon

Emily Potter

Lynne Roberts

Seattle, Washington

Cal - 66, Utah - 63

THE MODERATOR: We'd like to welcome Utah coach Lynne Roberts, Emily Potter and Paige Crozon. Coach, an opening remark and then questions.

LYNNE ROBERTS: First, I want to congratulate Cal. They did a nice job during that second half. I thought they kind of took momentum back and we just kind of struggled to get the pace of the game that we're used to playing and we've had success playing at. I thought they did a good job. They just played really hard in that second half, and they played kind of fearless and nothing to lose, so you kind of have to tip your hat to them. They went out and won the second half. So I thought we did a great job against them on the boards in the first half. They only had four offensive boards and they finished with 15, 11 in that second half in overtime. To me that tells a big story of how aggressive they are playing. It was physical game, very physical underneath, and also what hurt us a little bit with Potter fouling out. But for us, we certainly had no expectations to lose. We certainly respect Cal and knew they were capable and we really wanted to win this one. That said, I'm proud of our students and really proud of our players. We were picked to finish 11th in this unbelievable conference, and we finished seventh, and I'm proud of that. It's not first, but you've got to take steps to get to where you want to go, and I think these guys have done -- our players have done an amazing job and I'm proud to coach them.

Q. Coach, you go in with a six-point lead at halftime. What went wrong in the second half? Was it just them being more physical? Was it not executing your plays? What did you see?
LYNNE ROBERTS: Well, I don't know that it slipped in the beginning of the second half. Both teams came out hiccupping a little bit. I think there were back-to-back to back-to-back turnovers in the first four possessions by everybody. Then we certainly had an opportunity. I think we went up 8, maybe even 10, I can't remember. But I think we got a little tentative from -- they had the little lead, and got the ball up and how we were attacking. We just got a little bit tentative. We still were doing some good things, and I think rather than point to our team and say what did you guys do wrong, I think you have to give credit to Cal and how they played. I don't think our players did something wrong. I think it's that Cal really came out and were the aggressors. Sometimes you have nothing to lose, you're down. They've got some great players. I thought Cal in there made two remarkable plays. That one at the end there for them to go up two, the jumper, that was really well defended. Then they went short baseline and did kind of an up and under move. I mean, those are defended really well. So rather than say we didn't defend it well, I think you've got to give credit to them.

Q. Coach, with Potter's play against Anigwe, what did you see in that match-up? Both fouled out, but it seemed like for the most part your players were forcing other people on Cal to make plays.
LYNNE ROBERTS: Yeah, those are two great, young players going at it. I mean, they're going to battle for two more years. We're going to talk about that match-up for at least two more years. Anigwe is a handful, she's pretty athletic. I think we did a pretty decent job on her and she had 18 points. A pretty good player. I thought Potter was limited in foul trouble too, and she had 14 points. So the message is there that they're two really good players, they're young, and they're only going to get better. But the fact that both of them fouled out says that I think our game plan was to attack her, and theirs was to attack Potter, and both were effective.

Q. Speaking of that, what did you think of that match-up? Seems like you did a good job defending and you both ended up fouling out, but it looked like a battle out there.
EMILY POTTER: They're definitely very physical, the entire game was very physical. But it's a match-up I look forward to. It's fun to be able to play against great players like her and other teams in this conference.

Q. Paige, you hit big threes down the stretch, overall to keep it alive and keep the momentum going. How would you assess your performance and your thoughts right now that you guys came into this tournament and you overachieved from the beginning of the season and to have this opportunity and you played well down the stretch, but it kind of slipped away?
PAIGE CROZON: I think to touch on your statement about overachieving, I think we just overachieved for everyone outside of our locker room. Our team knew from the beginning of the season we were fully capable of coming in and making noise in the Pac-12 and having a big year. But we're not done yet. We have a lot of ways to go, and both that play at the end, Malia had an even bigger play to send it into overtime, and my teammates set big screens to get it open, and I just had an open look finally.

Q. Coach, again, with Malia, obviously, with that big three-point play, how would you assess her play and then to have her as the building block moving forward? I mean, she shined in all three match-ups.
LYNNE ROBERTS: Yeah, she's just a sophomore too, I mean, we're young. She had the and-one, but then she had the big three in overtime to start us off. I don't know what to say about her, but she's just competitive and she's fearless. That's what fearless players do. They're not afraid to take the shots and not afraid to mix it up. I thought she was really big. I would like to have had her have a chance there at the end when we turned it over. I wanted her to get the ball back out and attack it, but it didn't work that way. She's having a great -- she's had a good sophomore year, and again, we're young, so it's just going to get better.

Q. Coach, I imagine after this impressive season WNIT is on the horizon for you guys. So it's a long way to a postseason. So how do you handle these next couple weeks or so until you find out the postseason?
LYNNE ROBERTS: Yeah, it's kind of postseason purgatory. You just kind of hang out and wonder. But our RPI is good. We have a winning record. We should be in the WNIT. So how do you handle it? I think at this point mentally, physically players are tired, so you have to give them some days off but not get too far away from it. But we're excited about that. It's not the NCAA Tournament, which is the ultimate goal, but it's postseason, and from where we have been, I think these guys need to be really proud of that. I'm excited about it. I really love this team, and I don't want to be done coaching them. So we're really excited about that opportunity, and we look forward to getting after it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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