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March 9, 2012

Brittany Chambers

Jalana Childs

Deb Patterson


Baylor – 86
Kansas State – 65

THE MODERATOR:  We're now joined by the Kansas State Wildcats.
Coach, your thoughts on this afternoon's game.
COACH PATTERSON:  Well, we lined up against a dominant basketball team and I thought we had segments of the game where we played well against Baylor.  Obviously it was a tremendous night for Brittney Griner.
But I'm proud of what we brought to the floor by and large.  We made some mistakes and had some individual lulls.  But I think the second half we completely competed extraordinarily hard and gave up some rebounding numbers when we went to the zone, which is what happened in our first two contests against them.
But I'm proud of our basketball team and wish Baylor the very best as they move through NCAA Tournament play.
THE MODERATOR:  Questions for the student‑athletes.

Q.  Jalana, can you talk about after scoring 31points yesterday, the defensive effort for Baylor against you today?  They seemed to really key on you after you scored the first seven points for K‑State.
JALANA CHILDS:  Yeah, I kind of talked about this yesterday.  When someone's scoring, you know the defense is going to change a little bit.  And they didn't really have to change that much because my game was changing with Brittney Griner being in the post.
I can't make the moves that I want to make.  I gotta pivot extra times, exert as much energy as I can just to get a shot off.
Defense did a great job.  Not just guarding me but my entire team.  They really make it hard for teams to get what they want.  Just that Griner factor in the game, it's really difficult.
But we fought harder than I thought.  And I'm proud of my team and I'm ready to move forward.

Q.  Brittany, what's it like to watch a player have the performance that Griner had tonight?
BRITTANY CHAMBERS:  She's an unbelievable player.  And I think that with each game she's even evolving her game more and more.  I mean, we tried to push her out, but when you push her out, her mid game has improved so much from last year.
She really just is an unbelievable player.  It's fun to be on the court with her, I guess now saying it, not when it's happening.  But, yeah, she's unbelievable.
And she definitely has proven to be the best player in the country.

Q.  Did you feel like you were doing all you could do to stop Griner?  Is she so dominant that no matter how or what kind of approach you take to her she's still going to get those points.  Analyze a little bit how you were defending her.
BRITTANY CHAMBERS:  We don't really have the height that some other teams have.  We have ‑‑ 6'2" is our tallest.  When she's stepping back making shots over all of us like she is, there's not much you can do.  The most you can do is keep pushing her farther and farther away from the basket.  But she wasn't missing tonight, jump shot around anything.
I think with a little bit more height maybe you can pressure her a little bit more.  But with the night she had tonight, it's pretty tough to stop, if she's making those kind of shots.

Q.  Jalana, you had those seven early points and Destiny Williams was on you after a timeout they made the move and they put Griner on you.  When that timeout came, were you anticipating that move given the hot start that you had had?
JALANA CHILDS:  Like I said, the defense is going to change according to what you do.  I wasn't really thinking about it at the time.  I was really thinking about me, personally.  And the ways I could get us points on the board.
I was going to guard Branshea Brown myself, it didn't matter.  We had to find ways to get away from the basket, and I think that's the smartest thing you can do.  I was just trying to be smart.
I wasn't going to try to do my regular hook shot on her.  She'll see it in the stands.  But gotta play smart, and their coach did a great job of adjusting.
THE MODERATOR:  Thank you.  Questions for Coach.

Q.  Coach, how much of Baylor's offense did you feel like was specifically designed for Griner today?  Was she just in the right spot at the right time, or how many of those sets are set up exactly so that she can get the shot she wants to get?
COACH PATTERSON:  I've watched Baylor play a lot this year, and I know in the recent contests I've watched, I've seen Coach Mulkey over there on the sidelines admonishing her players with this message "42."  And she understands that's the best player in the country.  And they get her the ball.
And today, in particular, with the size mismatch that they have against Kansas State, it's just a given that they're going to go to Griner.  And they did.  Go to the well.  She's hitting shots at the rate she is.  You can send two to her, but she's still going to score over, and then you run into all kinds of issues with your rebounding, which is what you saw as we began to give up rebounds once we went to the zone.
So I think they've got a lot of answers.  I don't think that their system is so simple that it's just run up the floor and get it to Griner.  But at times it's keep it simple and give Brittney the ball.  They do that when it's time to do that.  When it's not time to do that, somebody's going to step up and penetrate hard to the basket or make a mid‑range jump shot or shoot an open 3.
So they're very smart.  They play around her extremely well.  There's not a lot of possessions where you see Baylor play mindless basketball.  They can make it look easy, but they're making great basketball decisions.

Q.  Today maybe didn't go exactly the way you wanted, but was it a successful trip here?  Did you think you got good things out of it?
COACH PATTERSON:  Yeah, I'm really proud of what our team brought to the floor.  I wish late in the first half we'd gotten Jalana more touches.  I think we lost a little bit of focus there.  But I think we learned at this tournament the value of‑‑ and really have the last four games of the season, post touches and involving our posts a lot.
I think Brittany Chambers played terrific for us during the course of this tournament, when the three was taken away she found ways to distribute the ball and to get to the rim some.  Jalana was tremendous.  I thought we competed extremely hard and back at that competitive level you have to compete at to be successful.
So it's a tough matchup for us against Baylor.  But I was very, very pleased with my basketball team the last‑‑ our basketball team the last two days.  And I know we'll continue to get better and we're looking forward to a real strong competitive showing in the NCAA Tournament.

Q.  Coach Mulkey indicated maybe it was a little bit unusual for Griner to see as much one‑on‑one defense as she saw early.  Is rebounding part of the thinking how you defended her?
COACH PATTERSON:  The last two games we've played them we tried to jump, tried zone.  Tried to show two at them the last two games.  And just got our lunch handed to us, and didn't board the ball at all.  And Griner ends up with 28, but everyone else ends up with deep double figures, and our thought was, well, let's do the best we can to push her out.  Let's be accountable on our rebound numbers.
And I thought the first half we did a really good job of that.  I thought the first half swung not so much somebody's going to score for Baylor.
I thought the first half swung with Baylor's defense.  It wasn't really about them scoring the ball as much as it was us not scoring the ball.
So I guess it's all in how you watch and look at the game.  The simple thing to see is Griner scoring points.  And I know it's simple to say K‑State had another empty trip.  But the reality is if we're matching trip for trip, if we're shooting better than 27percent from the floor in the first half, then maybe things look a whole lot different than they might have.
So I thought the first half was more about our lack of aggressiveness and we kind of got away from distributing the ball inside.  Probably the last 10 or 12minutes of the first half.

Q.  This is the end of a long run for you.  You have 18 regular season games against the Big 12.  You have two here in the tournament.  So 20 games against the best conference in America.  Do you like where your team is at as far as preparation for the NCAA Tournament, or do you think they're playing kind of their best basketball right now as you prepare for the tournament?
COACH PATTERSON:  I love where our team is at right now.  If you had asked me that about ten days ago I would have really been in a panic mode.  But I love how they rose up and competed so well and so hard and so true too.  I think what's made them successful all season long.
This team has been very tough minded.  We've had a couple of lulls along the route late in the season.  But I think that's a reflection of the challenge of competing in this league when you're a relatively‑‑ we're not extremely deep.  We are what we are.  And that double roundrobin in America's toughest league, where two of your losses are going to be against No.1 in the country, and where you're lining up against the defending national champions, it's brutal.
So I was really pleased with how hard we fought, with the new freshness in our disposition and our approach to the postseason, and I really am looking forward to us playing extremely well in the NCAA Tournament.  I feel good about where our team is at.

Q.  What are your expectations for Monday?  Have you spent any time looking into the seedings, where you might be?
COACH PATTERSON:  No, I'm so odd that way.  I just don't even remotely look at that.  I think about it in terms of getting into the tournament.  But I don't take it any further than that.  And I know what we get we'll get.  And I'm hopeful that after playing the RPI and the strength of schedule that we did, which was astronomical, that we'll get a good seed.
I think we're very deserving of it and have completed the kind of season that the NCAA committee says secures you a bid and a strong quality seed.
If there's anything else we could have done, I don't know what it could be.  I know wins are big but we competed our tail off all season long.  So I'm hopeful for a real good quality seed and then you gotta line up and play it the seed isn't going to matter once the 40minutes starts.  It's about how you play.  So let's hope for good things on Monday.
THE MODERATOR:  Thank you, Coach.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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