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March 1, 2018

Adia Barnes

Sam Thomas

Seattle, Washington

Arizona State - 76, Arizona - 47

ADIA BARNES: Not our best performance tonight. I felt that Arizona State was extremely aggressive from the git-go. We didn't respond. It took us a while until midway through the second quarter. We fought back a little bit harder. But I just felt like it just wasn't a good night for us overall, offensively or defensively.

Q. I was wondering what does it mean to a team having a senior like JaLea? What does it mean to you on the team?
ADIA BARNES: We're going to miss her a lot. I've only been fortunate to coach JaLea for two years. It's unfortunate I don't have her for all four years. It means a lot because this is her last go around. I'm extremely disappointed in our effort for her and for cat.

Having a fifth-year and having JaLea, it's their last game, so I expected a lot more energy. I expected more fight and enthusiasm. We just didn't have that tonight. I don't know why. It look like our minds were all on spring break.

But in this program in the future, our minds won't be on spring break, I'll tell you that right now. And we will come to the Pac-12 tournament, and we'll fight and we'll compete, and show a lot more heart than we showed here, and that's a guarantee.

Q. I know it's pretty fresh, but do you have any things like any reflections on this conference season that you're going to take away heading into the off-season?
ADIA BARNES: Well, the first thing is that Rome wasn't built in a day. I know that's cliché, but it's a process. I came to my alma mater for a reason, and that's to build a championship program, and I'm doing that, but it takes time.

So I think that I've learned patience. I've learned to just focus on the bright spots, the small things, and other things will come. Not look too far ahead. But it's been a hard season. I don't think in my career I've only won two conference games or six games overall, so as a competitor, that's extremely difficult. But I think the bright things for me and optimism comes from having great freshmen like Sam Thomas, Marlee Kyles, and something to build upon in the future. Having the top class in the country next year.

We have the number four class in the country, that just brings us more weapons. It's been really hard this year having a short bench, and not being able to change games up just because of our lack of depth. But bright things are Sam Thomas making All-Freshman team, her playing out of position, but having a stellar freshman year, and getting a lot of experience. Putting her in tough situations where she's uncomfortable, where she can grow. That's definitely a bright spot, and same with Marlee.

So they'll help us a lot. We have eight new players for next year, possibly nine. That's a lot of players. But with her experience and with Marlee's, I think they can really help us and contribute next year.

Q. Sam, for your first Pac-12 tournament, what was it like playing on the bigger stage?
SAM THOMAS: I mean, well, we didn't come out with heart as I wanted to. I mean, the excitement was there, we just didn't do justice to what we should have and could have done. But it's a great experience. Everyone's around there, cheering you on. We get an amazing place in Seattle, and it was just an amazing experience overall.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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