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March 9, 2006

Kim Mulkey

Angela Tisdale

Sophia Young


COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: Wow, survived another one. I want to compliment A&M as I did Kansas State. Their defense, just defense does exactly what Gary asked them to do. They play hard, they gamble, they make it tough on you, they contest shots. I just thought that they gave an effort that was just outstanding.
I'd like to also compliment our basketball team. I thought when the game was on the line, we did exactly what we needed to do to win it. Angela Tisdale stepping up and making free throws like a warrior for you, and defensively she did some good things for us down the stretch. I thought the last stand for us defensively was very good. Good ballgame.
Q. Sophia, you showed as much emotion after the game as you have all season, did this mean more since it was so hard-fought?
SOPHIA YOUNG: This game gave us another shot at Oklahoma and I think coming into this tournament, that's what we were really hoping for. And it meant a lot because just we're trying to win a tournament. I guess we're just all excited because we played so good tonight and I thought everybody stepped up and played well.
Q. Angela, take us through that last sequence when you thought A'Quonesia was going to try to shoot the 3 and what y'all did?
ANGELA TISDALE: We knew A'Quonesia was going to shoot the free throw, we switched on everything to make sure she didn't get a 3 off.
Q. You said to us last night that you needed her to step up as a quarterback, you said she was a sophomore. What did you say to her last night to get her to step up? And what do you think about the performance of Franklin?
COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: Well, I told Tisdale after the game, I put my arm around her little head and told her I loved her and she came through in the clutch and no matter how bad things go, she's our point guard, she's my point guard.
ANGELA TISDALE: I think A'Quonesia is a great point guard. She's an Aggie, but we're good friends and she's going to be a great point guard throughout her years.
Q. Angela, do you like to be at the free throw line at a time like that where it can mean the game?
ANGELA TISDALE: I don't know if I like it, but if I make it, I do. (Laughing).
Q. With the style that they play, and I know you've seen it, is this a team you don't want to face too many times in a year?
COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: There's a lot of them in this league I don't want to face. Gary, he just creates havoc on the defensive end, and the uglier the game, the more it is to their advantage; just the kids play so hard for him. That's a sign of his players believing in what he's instilled in that program the couple of years he's been there.
To say playing against him is any different than anybody else, no, there's too many good teams in this league. It's a different style than a lot of people in this league.
Q. Sophia, can you just elaborate on getting a third chance at the Sooners, pretty excited with that chance and now you have a couple days to get ready to a big game against them?
SOPHIA YOUNG: There's not really much to elaborate on. We just wanted to get a shot at them and we're finally getting that chance. I think it's going to be a really good game and I hope a lot of fans come out to watch us because it's going to be a great game.
Q. Can you talk about Sophia's performances the last two nights, two of her better performances in her career, and how she's peaking right now and kind of carrying the team?
COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: Well, that's what All-Americans do. When the game is on the line, she wants the ball, she makes big shots, she makes defensive stops for you. She's a leader out there. I can't think of other adjectives I can use to describe her. I've used every adjective I know. She'll go down in the history of Baylor as a two-time Kodak All-American because I anticipate she'll make that this year.
She means so much to our school, our community, our program, central Texas. Sure, she's a great player. But if you ever get to know Sophia, you love her just as much because she's a great person.
Q. Coming into a game like, this do you feel you do have an advantage because of your free-throw shooting?
COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: Well, we're actually shooting the ball pretty well from the line. If you'd asked me that about four months ago, three months ago, I'd have said, no, I don't want it to come down to the free throw line.
But we have players that since Conference has started, especially Abiola and Sophia, they are shooting around 70 percent. Tisdale from last year, she's at a much higher percentage from the foul line. You don't want to ever be that close, but she was the one you wanted the ball in her hands, and I had Jordan Davis in there who missed very few shots throughout her career at Baylor. So I think we had the right people in the game and made sure those people touched the ball.
Q. Can you talk a little bit more about your defensive performance, you held them to 30 percent shooting.
COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: Well, we mixed our defensive schemes, played a lot of zone and -- did I use that word, zone? Isn't that what I played in the Final Four last year? You do what you have to do; that's respect.
They are very good off the dribble. We felt like if we could mix their defenses, it might be to our advantage. I thought doing that was to our advantage, and they also mixed defenses. It was one of those games where probably both coaches did a lot of things that are uncharacteristic of their philosophy.
Q. Coming out of that time-out with about 12 seconds left, what were the assignments on the defensive play there, that last play?
COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: Well, let me take you back, was it 17 seconds she made the two free throws? I called a time-out, we had two team fouls to give before they shot a bonus and I wanted us to get as close to 10 as I could, and then I wanted whoever was guarding the ball to foul. We did it a little bit sooner than I wanted, I think we did it at 12. And then they threw it in and we made sure we switched on everything with the understanding that the worst they could do was tie it on a 3. Just switch on everything, make sure you contest everything, you don't foul.
Now, I thought about fouling again, and then I just, as coaches do, you make split-second decisions and I thought if I foul at that point, then the next foul would put them in the bonus. So we just made a very good, aggressive defensive stop right there.
Q. Oklahoma had a pretty easy game tonight but had a tough game yesterday, and you've had two tough games, but now it's 1 and 2. Can you talk about what a showcase this will be for the Conference on Saturday night?
COACH MULKEY-ROBERTSON: I hope it will be a showcase. I hope that both teams play well. I hope that the fans are entertained and I hope that the television audience is entertained. You've got what you had during the regular season. You had the No. 1 and the No. 2 teams facing off in the championship of the tournament.
You have two teams regardless of the outcome of the game, they are probably going to get either 2 or 3 seeds in the NCAA Tournament. I think when the game is over, regardless of who wins it, we're both going to go, wheww, because when you get to the NCAA Tournament, teams don't tend to know you as well as we know each other in the league.
Q. With both your games with Oklahoma going down to the wire, how important is experience going to be for you guys?
Jordan: Well, they have experienced players, too, so I'm not sure that I understand your question. I just think it's going to come down to players making plays.
They are not going to change a whole lot. We are not going to change a whole lot. You have two very, very good basketball teams that have great players, and I said this before, when you go to the NCAA Tournament, which we both will, you'd better have a great player on your team, and both teams have that.

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