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March 29, 2008

Jayne Appel

Rosalyn Gold-Onwude

Tara VanDerveer

Candice Wiggins


THE MODERATOR: We'll go ahead and get started. We'll take an opening statement from coach and then take questions for the student-athletes.
COACH VANDERVEER: I thought our team really had to battle. It wasn't pretty, but I thought it was a very physical game and I was really proud of how our team stepped up. Pittsburgh has some really talented players. Zellous had a great game for them. I thought Roz really worked hard especially in the second half. We did a much better job defensively. We didn't give them transition shots, first half we gave them too many transition baskets.
I thought we did a great job on Walker. What did she end up with? I don't have a stat sheet. 2. Okay. So I thought the we did a great job on her. Jayne really finished well, did a good job at the free throw line. They were a very, they're an athletic team, they let them play tonight, and I think that that is all in our favor for Monday night and I'm really excited that we'll be playing Monday night.
THE MODERATOR: Take questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Candice, you guys, there was a long stretch where you really couldn't put them away. Go up by seven and then they would get back into it. With a can you kind of describe that second half and sort of that the way the game was going.
CANDICE WIGGINS: Well, I think it's in tournament time it's everything changes. The pace of the game, the intensity is just up. Everyone knows what's at stake. So I think that was probably a cause as to why we couldn't get a run or get a lead going.
But I think that maybe halfway through the half the second half we all looked at each other and we just stayed together. We stayed tough. We never quit on each other. I think that's why we were able to pull away is we stayed together.

Q. Candice, did you break anything and Jayne, if you could talk a little bit about the inside play and did they let stuff go and was it pretty rough?
CANDICE WIGGINS: No. I did not break anything.
JAYNE APPEL: I think in the tournament it's always a lot more physical than a normal season game. I think we had a, she was a big challenge inside for us guarding Walker. And by matchup I was matched up on her, but really it was a team effort in stopping her a hundred percent. It was everyone doubling down and knowing what they were doing on the outside.

Q. What about offensively for you? Were they leaning on you more or more physical for you?
JAYNE APPEL: We have had physical games all year and in the Pac-10 we have Cal with those two and they're just as big and there's two of them, so we have gone against it in past games, but they definitely were very physical inside.

Q. Can any of the girls talk about at one point I think it was like 7:45 left you were up 49-46 and they pulled out both Zellous and Walker and it seems like that's where you went on a run and took control of the game. How important was that time right there?
ROSALYN GOLD-ONWUDE: I think that was a very important time for us offensively. We really went on a run, we were able to O board. I think that was a time where usually we were executing our offense, defensively, we had game plans whether Zellous was in or wasn't, we had strategic plans for both of those situations. And I think we really worked hard and came together to execute those plans and in both of those situations. And I think we definitely did take advantage of it. And again, as Candice said, it was really the second half, I mean people came off the bench staying stay tough and together. Let's get this going. People wanted this win. It wasn't just everybody on the court, it was everyone. So that was a stretch where I think the whole team came together. And that's what made that special.

Q. You hit a couple of big shots right after they pulled close and you seemed pretty assertive tonight. Were you looking to take open shots when you had them?
ROSALYN GOLD-ONWUDE: I would like to thank my teammates for really and my coach, even in shoot around people are saying positive things to me. That helps. And honestly, my success really comes from the fact that we have such great great players like January and I Candice and that's just the honest truth. Because people have to pick them up. People have to pay attention to them. And that's what I'm in the gym working for, those opportunities when everybody's paying tense to them and I get my shot and I'm ready to knock it down.

Q. Can you talk about what they were doing to you defensively, you didn't even take a shot until midway through the first half and after coming off that huge game the other night did you get frustrated at all or did you know that the other ones would come through?
CANDICE WIGGINS: Well we knew that they were going to to focus in on us. I think it was pretty clear that they're not going to want me to score 44 points again. So I was really working to be patient and not force shots and not and my teammates eye, I didn't even really need to shoot. Everyone was doing really well. So I was looking to get Jayne looks on the block and I think everyone was knocking down shots, so it wasn't really a necessity. So I wasn't really frustrated or anything like that.

Q. I know you were asked about your shooting, but to me it was sort of a complete game and I think even the five fouls should how aggressive you were. You were doing Candice Wiggins kind of rebounds underneath and everything. Were you possessed tonight or what was going on?
ROSALYN GOLD-ONWUDE: I think during half time we were up, but we were up one point and I thought about what it would be like to, I honestly thought about what it would be like to come back here and everybody is going to be like I should've, I could've, I would've, and I think that was definitely feeling I brought the out in the second half that I don't, I didn't want to have that kind of a conversation with my teammates or with myself.
And defensively, Zellous is a very good player, she came out in the first half and really did very well. And I took that personally. Jeanette took that personally and we worked really hard and I got most of my fouls in the second half but I think I frustrated her and I know she scored a lot less. So that was my main contribution to my team.

Q. A little bit of inspiration from Cuba Gooding talking to you guys.
No, so, anyway, -- anyway we were going it was a couple of us heading downstairs to get something to eat and we saw Cuba in the bar. We weren't in the bar you but we saw him. And anyway he came up to, he had already spoken to the team came in, spoke to a couple of the people who were in the room with Tara, we do an inspirational movie theme for every game. And Men of Honor was a the team for the game four. And so he was in that movie and we told him that and he was very excited about it. And then I ran into him at the bar and we had a little conversation random about McDonalds and I brought him back a fillet of fish.

Q. Did he pay you back for it?
ROSALYN GOLD-ONWUDE: I said it was on me, don't sweat it, Cuba.
(Laughter.). For real.

Q. Did you have to leave a ticket for him?
ROSALYN GOLD-ONWUDE: He's filming tonight. I got his cell though. -- no. I don't.
CANDICE WIGGINS: No questions about that any more. Get the mic away.

Q. Jayne, can you talk about we'll ask you this tomorrow, but can you, I know it's too early to even ask this, but Monday, Maryland, a lot of big bodies, any thoughts to what that's going to be like?
JAYNE APPEL: I don't think it's ever too early. We're already talking about them in our locker room, getting a scouting report after the game. Waiting for the 30 minutes of media to start. So we have already started. We have been looking forward to this game a lot. We know it's going to be physical. Tara kind of gave credit to Pitt saying they're getting us ready he for Monday with how physical they were.
I think we're just going to come out and try and do what Stanford does.

Q. Can you talk about getting Walker out of the game and how it seemed to frustrate her, that she wasn't able to get going offensively and then she picked up some early fouls. It seemed like your team really fed off that.
JAYNE APPEL: Well I think that our coach told us before when we were scouting them that in games that she's scored I think it was 10 or less, they haven't won. So I kind of made that a goal of mine to always make sure I was doing my part in stopping her. And I knew my teammates would do their part also.
I think that that was our main focus on defense. Definitely her and Zellous. So making sure that she didn't score and getting her in foul trouble, that is really it kind of hurts their team because she's a big part of their offense. So that was really important for us.
THE MODERATOR: All right. We'll let you go back to the locker room now. Take questions for coach.

Q. Can you talk about offensively the difference between the first half and for your team and the second half?
COACH VANDERVEER: I thought that in our, our team wanted this game very badly. I thought in the first half we really weren't able to establish any flow offensively and I thought that, I mean they were really all over Candice and the physical nature of the game is different than what we have played in in the last games.
I think that it kind of, it kind accounted for some of our maybe bad timing and I thought that some people were trying to make some plays that really weren't there. And we tried to do a couple of those in the second half too. But once we kind of got in a little flow and I really think Roz was really so huge for with her hitting some shots and her really playing as well as she did, she really took a lot of pressure off of Candice. And also off of J.J.. and then I think things kind of went from there. When she kind of got going and she was so into it, I think that was really the key for us.

Q. Like I asked the girls, how important was that stretch when they took Zellous and Walker out of the game a little over 7:30 minutes left and your girls made a couple big plays. I think I think you went on a 7-0 run. Did you feel the tide turn right there?
COACH VANDERVEER: There was a time in the second half where when Walker went out I thought, well, I'll get Jayne out and give her a little rest. But then she went back in and they're a different team without Walker in the game in the same way that we're a different team without Jayne in the game.
I'm not sure why both of them went out. But when you have your two best players on the bench, I really tried, I try never to take Candice and Jayne out together. But we did take advantage of that a little bit. The women on our team really responded I thought really well.
THE MODERATOR: One quick look at the stat sheet out rebounding 55-30, that seems like maybe the ball game kind of in a nutshell there.
COACH VANDERVEER: We did talk about rebounding being really key. And just I think you could get a sense from our team that this was really important. And they played really hard for each other and just to battle and to not back down when a team really took it at them and I was, I really was afraid when I saw Candice get hit, but I think the other, just the physical game will really help us to go for Monday night and hopefully beyond.

Q. Maryland has a lot of players left over from their 2006 National Championship team. Does the difference in tournament experience concern you at all heading into Monday?
COACH VANDERVEER: I don't think at this point it does. We'll have a very good sense of what we need to do against them and they have a very good sense of what they will need to do against us. But I think our team is playing very well. People are very excited to play with and for each other. And I think it's going to be a great battle on Monday night.
Both of our teams have a lot of really positive tournament experience. Maybe the fact that we haven't gone to the Final Four will work for us.
THE MODERATOR: All right, coach, thank you.

End of FastScripts

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