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March 3, 2016

Joanne P. McCallie

Oderah Chidom

Azura Stevens

Greensboro, North Carolina

Duke - 57, Virginia - 53

JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: I'm really proud of this team, really proud of this group. We had some adjustments to make a little bit, and I thought everybody fought very, very hard. It was a hard-fought game. Virginia is an excellent team, and I'm just really proud of this team for doing the hard things. There were some easy things that we didn't do out there, but there was a lot of hard things that we did, and the 49 rebounds, 24 offensive, is probably the difference in the game.

You know, when you're not shooting well, and we didn't shoot well, and they didn't shoot well, and it wasn't the prettiest game out there, that happens sometimes in tournament play, and I know for us, it can happen given some of the adjustments we had to make. But I love the rebounding. And for Azura to come back and post that double-double without ever practicing and missing seven games shows the kind of person she is, the character she has, the All-American she is, and it's just tremendous, and I'll tell you, Oderah has been pushing herself up there in terms of being recognized. She was not recognized All-Conference in any way, and she has been absolutely pouring it on, not filling in but adding on when Azura couldn't play, and then when Azura did play, continuing to do what she can do. So I'm very proud of Oderah and Azura and the team. We all feel like we can play a lot better. You don't need to ask that question. Yes, we can play a lot better, but we had to make some adjustments, and this was a game of heart, hustle and the intangibles, so I'm really proud of this team.

Q. You get Azura back and all of a sudden Rebecca is gone. Did Oderah have to have an outstanding performance like today?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: It's hard to say that. Oderah has just been doing this. It's a player she's developed into. When things happen on a team, and certainly we've had our share of happenings, Oderah has been just ready to play her game. I just think it's been an opportunity that she's taken full advantage of, and I think she's shown what she can do, and I think the standard is set. She has a good time in there, she mixes it up, and if we can reduce her turnovers, we're in business. (Laughter).

Q. With the adjustments along the lines of keeping Virginia from exploiting -- being able to exploit your size --
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: Yeah, the team did a great job showing some patience and getting the ball in the paint and making, hopefully making people defend us and making them defend us, and I thought that was a key. I see that we have this wonderful shooting percentage from three-point range. That was not very pleasant. But the bottom line is I love the attempts. I'd like Oderah to get a few more attempts. She only had 12. Azura had attempts. She need to get them and Amber was missing in action due to foul trouble. She could help us a lot. So the inside game is very important to us, and, yes, we tried to utilize our inside game.

Q. Joanne, what's the situation with Rebecca Greenwell?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: Well, we've just told people that she's day-to-day. But I don't know.

Q. You guys played great in the paint as far as defensively. Do you guys have any idea of what you'll do to slow Notre Dame as far as three-point shooting?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: Well, we definitely need to do a better job there. You can see that they shot 42 percent. We lost No. 10, who I thought really helped them tremendously. Yeah, she had two. And we lost 23 early, so we did a very poor job. That would not be a good idea.

Q. It seemed like when the team was dragging just a small amount that Mercedes played, just came in and provided the spark, and it seemed like the defense really picked up from that point on the rest of the game.
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: Yeah, she inserts a lot of energy and a lot of leadership. She's going to be a fantastic coach some day. She understands tempo and where the ball should be, and she has a lot of thoughts about coaching and understanding the game, and I know it was four minutes, but it was a great four minutes, and we'll continue to look for Mercedes to give us that push.

Q. Azura, when did you know for sure that you were going to be able to play in this game?
AZURA STEVENS: Well, we've just been taking it day by day. I've been rehabbing so I didn't really know that I was going to be playing, but obviously when we found out Becca wasn't play, then I was ready to go.

Q. How did you feel about the prospect of playing in a game?
AZURA STEVENS: Very excited. I've missed playing with my team so much and just to be back in this first tournament game has been very fun.

Q. Oderah, with so many people getting hurt and hurting Duke's chances to do things because you're missing somebody, what did you hear when Azura coming back, awesome, and then Becca's out. Was it in that order? And also, how pumped were you just to have a great game today?
ODERAH CHIDOM: It was in that order. Azura is coming back and we found out Becca's situation yesterday.


ODERAH CHIDOM: Right when we got to Greensboro, actually. I mean it just goes to show that one person doesn't define our team. We had a team meeting and we just talked about how we all need to step up, how it's not just one person but all of us need to do the intangibles that need to be done in order to be successful.

Q. Azura, how long did it take you to really shake off the rest and get back into game play because at the beginning you were staying around the three-point line but once you really started to get comfortable in the second quarter then you started to bang bodies down low. Was there one specific play or one thing that happened that made you realize I can play right now, you can be here?
AZURA STEVENS: Well, I practiced a little like earlier in this week, and I was kind of like tentative, and so I was working through that. But after a while I was just like, my team needs me and I'm out here not to just prance around, but to do what I need to do to help them out, so I just got into the flow of the game in the second quarter, and that's where it took off.

Q. Coach, Virginia led by seven early. It seemed that you weren't using your height advantage early. Did you stress anything during a time-out or during the quarter break to take advantage of your size?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: We definitely stressed that. I think early we were really lackadaisical on defense. 23 nailed two threes early. They were gapping us. It was just sort of slow out of the gates. We were just slow to be as intense as we needed to. The team responded well in terms of understanding that, and I thought we just defended better after that initial -- spotting them that eight-point lead or seven-point lead. I thought things began to change in terms of our defense, our team defense, and then offensively, as well, kind of both together.

Q. Joanne, how do you address the perimeter game or the lack of the perimeter game? What does a coach do? Was it poor shot selection or just things weren't going in?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: No, I think we rushed. I've seen Angela bury every shot she took today. But we rushed. We were trying to do too many things there, and I know -- I mean, Faith took three threes. She does not need to do that. She needs to attack more. We just kind of rushed shots. More rushing of perimeter shots, and I think it's a good lesson for us to know that, well, you don't always play the best offensively, but you can get it done, and you can get it done by defending and rebounding, and hopefully tomorrow playing a lot better offensively.

Q. Coach, when Kyra really came in and started grabbing those defensive rebounds, I feel like the mood changed a little bit and everybody started crashing offensive boards. What kind of impact can she give you guys?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: I agree with you. Kyra's explosiveness makes a big difference on the floor. When she came in, and she's our sixth starter, we have six basically seven starters, and she comes in and she's explosive on offense, but she was explosive in rebounding. And that does make a difference because that loose ball that gets batted around as the posts were banging really hard, when she rips that ball and goes, nobody can stop her. She got a great steal and finish. I'm looking for her to get some more coast-to-coast scores, just get the ball and go. But she's really playing really good basketball right now.

ODERAH CHIDOM: Rebounding. We like to focus just on defensive rebounding when it comes to games and the offense will come. We lost Becca and she's a tremendous guard rebounder, so the primary focus was having the guards pick up two, three extra rebounds that add on to their average, so Kyra did a really good job tonight. Angela did well, and guard rebounding was a primary focus.

AZURA STEVENS: Yeah, I think just going off of that, like Coach was saying, when Kyra gets those D boards, that can spark our transition, and that's what we need to do, and she's been rebounding very well, so for her to continue that would be awesome.

Q. Coach, could you talk about that scramble there on Virginia's last possession and the foul, and did you know exactly what had happened right away, or was your heart in your throat for a while?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: No, no, right away. Oderah was on that side boxing out, and she had great position. Kyra also had great position boxing out, and it was just a -- people were careening for the ball. It was a great position, a really important rebound for us. Obviously Oderah did the right thing. I wasn't sure if it was Oderah or Kyra, but it was clearly -- you can see it on the film. And the official called it way early. The game continued. I mean, people kept playing, but the whistle was blown and he was waving off everything very early, and I just thought, that's interesting to have rebounding rewarded like that. I mean, it's one thing to tell the team, boy, rebounding matters. It's another thing for them to box out and win a game on it basically.

Q. You gave them a good run at Cameron. What are the things that have to go perfectly tomorrow?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: We need to keep the tempo slowed down and more so given the fact that -- like Becca, if she cannot play and is out, we need to slow the game down a little bit and not get in these runs. We were up by five against them late in the game and made some poor decisions, and there was a little bit of a run there that we gave, so it's really important that we control the tempo, obviously contest three-point shooters much better than today. Today was horrible, and we've got to note that and move forward with that, and then of course just rebounding. It's all the same things, really. It doesn't really matter who you're playing at this point, it matters that you focus on what you need to do.

Q. Coach, 25 assists on Sunday, down to six today. What was missing from your guard play that the offense didn't really work as fluidly as it did?
JOANNE P. MCCALLIE: Again, we were just rushing. We had rushed shots, made a point of saying some of the three balls that went up, Angela and Faith in particular, we rushed shots. You didn't see us working that shot clock down to two or something. We rushed, we didn't pass as well. You have to credit their defense. They played very hard. We need to settle down and get more of a good pace on offense tomorrow.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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