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March 18, 2016

Elisha Davis

Katie Hempen

Charli Turner Thorne

Tempe, Arizona

Arizona State - 74, New Mexico State - 52

COACH TURNER-THORNE: Well, obviously I've coached against Mark Trakh quite a bit and just hats off to New Mexico State. I knew that they -- we knew that they were a championship team. They weren't going to go away. They were going to keep playing hard, keep pressing. I thought they did a great job.

As far as for us, to get pretty much our entire team in an NCAA-calibre game was really fun, and I thought we really wanted to start strong. We had not started strong for a couple games. I thought we came out, really threw the first punch, kind of set the tone.

Probably would have liked to have built on things a little bit better in the second half but again, I thought we really spread the minutes out and it was a great team win.

Q. How much of a lift did you get from Katie coming out and draining those two threes right off the bat?
COACH TURNER-THORNE: Yeah, that's what she does. Katie, we were just talking about it walking in here, because you know, obviously people are always keen on her. So we knew they were going to run at her hard. She was ready. She side-stepped, she shot-faked and she did everything she needed to do to make sure that she took good, clean looks. And when she's got good, clean looks, she's not always perfect from the field but she's pretty good.

She really stepped up today. We obviously want to have a more balanced attack come Sunday.

Q. Katie, how did it feel to be 6-for-6 from three points? That ties an NCAA record for a tournament game.
KATIE HEMPEN: It felt really about but honestly I have to give props to my teammates. Lili was 6-0 today for assisted turnovers. Sophie Brunner did a good job kicking it inside out. My teammates did help me a lot to get open. We have all different types of threats on our team, so the fact that Neci or Bri can drive to the basket and draw two people and kick it back out, it makes my life a lot easier.

Q. Last year in the opening round of the tournament, you had the same kind of game, you were on fire from deep, and you had I think 23 points or something like that, does something change when you get to this setting? What goes through your minds that changes your offensive attack?
KATIE HEMPEN: It's just win or go home. I wouldn't say anything changes. We prepare the same. We think the same thoughts. It's just, I think being able to play someone different other than the Pac-12 makes it a different game, because you don't know everybody's tendencies from playing the whole year together.

So the fact that we didn't know New Mexico State's tendency, they probably did a little better than they had been with their tendencies, and I think that's what showed up for me today.

COACH TURNER-THORNE: Her dad said it was his overalls.

KATIE HEMPEN: (Laughing) he totally made a comment. It was the big, bald guy cheering, tattoos, yeah, he's a cool guy.

Q. You've forced 21 turnovers today and held them scoreless for pretty strong stretches, especially that first quarter, how big was that to build on your lead?
ELISHA DAVIS: I would say it's key, because like our coach pointed out in the locker room, we haven't gotten a jump on a team within our last games in a while.

So it just felt good to kind of get back to what we know and what we work towards every day in practice, and just to know that our hard work is slowly starting to get back to where we want it to be.

Even though we did force 21 turnovers and had a really good jump initially in the game, we got laxed. We got comfortable. We didn't sustain it. So we have to get better in that aspect, so, yeah, we forced 21 turnovers and we could have forced more. We could have did a lot more, so we need to do better defensively the next game.

KATIE HEMPEN: I agree with Lili. Yeah, we forced 21 turnovers, but they forced 18. So even on that possession wise, but like Lili said, we just became so relaxed. We are going into tougher teams. Just props to New Mexico State and just grinding the whole game no matter what. Yeah, we just, yeah, we need to take care of the ball.

Q. I'm wondering, you guys were here last year at this time at this point. What are you going to do different going into this Sunday's game that you didn't do last year?
KATIE HEMPEN: I wouldn't say we do any different, let's hope not because last year we made it past Tempe. I would say different from this past game we had. We definitely need to rebound a lot harder and take care of the ball a lot better.

ELISHA DAVIS: I think going into the next game, we don't never change up what we do but we have to stay in the moment. So I would say just being positive with each other, with our coaches being coachable, going out every day and giving it our hardest that we can give all of our effort and lastly just staying poised.

So I really don't say we go into the game differently, but just throughout the tough moments in the game where we are not scoring how we want, we're not defending how we want, we need to continue to stay poised.

Q. Those last two games here, that mini-slump that you were in shooting from three-point -- was that in your mind or are you the kind of player or shooter that can erase that stuff?
KATIE HEMPEN: I tell my teammates every day, short-term memory loss. Our coaches do a great job keeping us present, not thinking about the past. For me, I honestly couldn't tell you what shots I took in the first half, how I missed. But at that moment, I know that the shot is going to go in.

And I think my teammates can back me up as I'm always looking for positives, whether that's, we turn the ball over, go team touch, do something. But yeah, I don't have find myself to emotionally be in a slump.

Q. I guess this is for both players. I don't know how much of the first game you were able to see and I know you guys are going to be into studying them right away, but Green Bay was really able to sort of pack in on the inside and keep Tennessee from getting much inside. You guys have that ability. I'm just wondering if you think that that game, you're going to be doing maybe a lot of things that Green Bay did to try to slow down Tennessee.
KATIE HEMPEN: Green Bay and our defense is actually kind of a lot different. Green Bay stepped down and was like, was like, hey, shoot it. But ASU women's basketball is pressure. We try our hardest not to give one free bounce, one free touch, and I think that our mission is to wear Tennessee down. But Tennessee is a great program, legacy, anything you can think of, but it's going to be a really tough battle on Sunday.

ELISHA DAVIS: I would just say, just doing what we do, forcing the action, not allowing them to be comfortable. So of course we want them to take those contested shots outside of the paint, yet we can't let them be in their own rhythm and what they are used to doing and in flow.

So all would I say is basically what Katie said, just play our defense and make them, you know, make them earn every shot. Don't make it easy for them basically.

Q. When you're hitting everything from three-point range and you're not missing, are you feeling something different? Are you feeling that shot go in right away? And the second part is, I thought I remember reading something about, how one of your brothers helped you like with the angle of your shot by tying, what is it, a flashlight on a pole or something. Can you explain that story a little bit, too?
KATIE HEMPEN: For the first part, I think you catch and shoot from a rhythm. All my three-point shots tonight was in a rhythm, whether it was transition, inside-out. So it was a lot easier for me to just catch and shoot off that.

For your second question, me and my brother, mark, we used to shoot till midnight out in my backyard, and we had a clothes line and we would hook up a flashlight and put something under the flashlight because we couldn't see the basket. We're like, well, as long as we can see the basket, we can still shoot.

So he always rigged up something on the clothes line pole and he just shot and shot and shot. He definitely takes a part in how I played today.

Q. You guys held a 40-26 advantage on points in the paint. Is that kind of a stark contrast to the Cal game where you had trouble stopping the opposition down there?
COACH TURNER-THORNE: Yes. Do you want me to elaborate? You're stating the obvious.

Obviously we're used to getting our paint touches and paint points and that game was a bit of an anomaly, not to mention Cal was probably the hottest team in our conference and playing really well. I think we need to do a lot better. Our goal was 60 paint touches, so 60 times a ball goes into the paint either off a dribble or a pass, and I know we didn't come close to that. So we need to build on that.

Q. You've said quite often that Katie is going to be there when you need her to be there. This kind of a classic example of that?
COACH TURNER-THORNE: Yes. I mean, well, Jeff and I have talked about that. She does, she gets better as the season goes on and she usually is at her best this time of the year, thank God, and she was certainly today. She was just really hot. And it's a credit to her and who we are as a team that she didn't keep, like, give me the ball, give me the ball. She just kept playing team offense and she really made, whatever, four or five in a row and didn't get another touch until, I don't know when, third or fourth quarter and I don't think she cared -- I know she didn't care. We just don't even think that way.

But it really helps. I mean, the last couple games when we didn't play at our best, our perimeter shooting was obviously not there, and so we've had some time to get in the gym and it showed today.

Q. Tennessee is a bigger team than obviously New Mexico State, so how do you think the game plan is going to have to change going into the next round?
COACH TURNER-THORNE: Well, they are like a Pac-12 team. They are like I think a top-end Pac-12 team. Be more normal. It was weird with them being smaller and.

Spread out and playing four guards. I think we'll be more at home. Although, Tennessee does, when they sub they go to more of a four-guard lineup. They actually have three point guards on the floor at one time in their second rotation but their starting lineup is big. So is South Carolina.

Everybody we played is bigger than us, but obviously rebounding, that's their greatest strength. That's going to be huge. We did not do a good job today on the boards, at all. So we are going to have to really make that adjustment going into Sunday.

I did think Wisconsin played them very well. We haven't really talked about anything with them, so they are just thinking, oh, we're just going to do what we do. We're going to make some adjustments. I thought they really played their strengths well, and I thought we started off against New Mexico State not doing that. We were running out at penetrators and stepping down off of shooters and they were hurting us. And then we sort of got locked in and we did a little bit better job being out on their best shooters and stepping down off their better penetrators, and that's going to be key against Tennessee I think just looking at personnel and trying to do a good job with -- obviously DeShields can do everything, so you just try to contain her.

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