home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


March 10, 2013

Geno Auriemma

Stefanie Dolson

Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis


UConn:  94
DePaul:  61

THE MODERATOR:  With this win tonight Connecticut advances to the semifinals, facing the winner of the Syracuse Villanova game tomorrow night at 8 PM, joining us is Coach Geno Auriemma, freshman forward Breanna Stewart, sophomore forward Kaleena Mosquesa‑Lewis, junior center Stefanie Dolson check that.
COACH AURIEMMA:  I would say the same thing I said to our team after the game, we played a really good basketball game.
The game was well played by a lot of our players, individually and as a team, and, you know, coming off of a pretty emotional game last Monday and we had an opportunity to come out and play.  A team that I think is one of the harder teams to defend in our league.  You saw that one stretch where, when they started making shots, they're really, really‑‑ they're really hard to defend.  We had to make sure we had the right match‑ups in there all the time.
So I'm really, really happy with what we did and I'm looking forward to tomorrow.

Q.  How pleased are you with the impact that you got tonight and the freshmen all together?
COACH AURIEMMA:  Well, I had an inkling that Stewie would play better than she has in a while because she practiced better this week than she has in a while.  I saw today some of the same things I saw Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and it carried over into today.  That's a good sign.  Stewie is used to playing USA Basketball, where you play for, like, eight or nine games, then you go back home.
She thinks three games this week and then maybe six after that, so this is her way of doing‑‑ five months, she said "That's not what I signed up for, man," so I think she is in her comfort zone now.

Q.  Stefanie what did you think of Stewie's performance tonight?
STEFANIE DOLSON:  I think she did a good job of not second‑guessing herself, making decisions quickly, being extremely aggressive, cutting to the basket and doing a really good job not standing still and making sure she is always moving and always being aggressive and defensively she had a few blocks, a few rebounds, definitely happy with how she played.  Keep it up.

Q.  Stef and Kaleena, if there was one thing that the needed to straighten out afternoon Monday night and get back on the right track, back in the right direction, what would it have been?
KALEENA MOSQUEDA‑LEWIS:  I think we need to do focus on rebounding aggressiveness offensively and defensively and when we came out into the game we picked up the intensity on the glass, everyone was going after the glass, whether it was someone starting or coming off the bench.

Q.  Kaleena when you beat a team by 50, like you did last month against DePaul, how important is it to get off to a good start like you did?
KALEENA MOSQUEDA‑LEWIS:  It's really important.  We don't want to take any teams lightly, and they're a good team, a well‑coached team and this is when teams play better than they have all season so we wanted to make sure we came out in the beginning of that first half and be aggressive and play Connecticut basketball.

Q.  Coach, talk about the balance on this team tonight.  You had 46 points in the paint, 12, 3‑pointers, five players in double figures, and how important it is to get that kind of a balance?
COACH AURIEMMA:  Yeah, I thought we had a little bit of an advantage against DePaul, they're much more of a perimeter team and I thought Stef could have a good game if we got her established and also with Stewie, and that's when you know you have played well when you get that kind of balance.  Sometimes you just don't get it, sometimes it's just you're forcing, you know, the issue and today I thought we just played.  When shots were there we took 'em, we got the ball where we wanted them to get it and, you know, I've seen her shoot great from the 3‑point line and poorly from the 3‑point line, but very rarely have I seen her miss when we get the ball into the paint.

Q.  Stewie, how do you build upon such a performance, after such an up‑and‑down stretch for you, how do you build off this over the next two games and into the NCAA Tournament.
BREANNA STEWART:  I mean, I think that just coming out and playing confident and really just looking to shoot when I'm open and anything I can do to help this team.

Q.  Geno, why did you start Mo and how do you think she did?
COACH AURIEMMA:  Why did I start her?  Part of it was I thought it was a good match‑up, you know?  We wanted to pick them up full court and disrupt.  Their offense is really good, you saw it during that one stretch if you don't get pressure on the ball they get wide‑open shots, it's a fun offense to watch if you don't have to coach against it.  I thought that was the easy answer, so you could put pressure on the ball.  The hard answer is, at some point she is going to have to play and she is going to have to play well.  And it's getting more difficult to get her in situations that are comfortable for her.  If you put her in, you bring her in off the bench and we're winning that's easy, if you bring her in off the bench and we're struggling, that's difficult on her as a young freshman and that's what happened in the Notre Dame game.  Best way to make sure she is in a game at a time when it means something, it's a little bit of both, I'll start her and see what happens.  First couple of minutes, okay, after that, really good, really good.

Q.  Can you talk about the difference in this team when the freshmen are playing and getting things done like, they were tonight, talk about that.
COACH AURIEMMA:  You're talking about three really, really talented players that if they play really well, then if we sub and the other team subs, I would hope that the level of play doesn't drop too much from‑‑ there shouldn't be a huge gap between Stefanie and one of the freshmen big guys or even Kiah Stokes who played pretty well tonight.  Because I think that's the wear‑down that it does to the other team.
They've got to get their other guys into the game, too, but their guys may not be as talented as our guys and then they have to hurry up and put their starters back in and after a while it catches up with you.  So it's important for them to contribute just a little bit, they don't have to do a lot, they just have to do a little bit.
In the first half it was great, whoever we put in they played exactly like we wanted them to play and I got cocky and said, let's put them out there and see what they do, and at one point I said I'm glad we're up 30, because if I put you guys out there another 7 minutes, we're tied.  It's true!

Q.  How is Moriah when she is pressured and does she have the ability to stabilize the offense in that sort of a situation?
COACH AURIEMMA:  No, she doesn't and I don't know any freshman point guard in America who does, that's why none of them are worth a shit.  There is not one team playing for a national championship, I think, that has a freshman point guard, because it's hard.  But having said that, I want her response to be, against pressure, to attack the basket like she did today.  Because pulling it out and trying to get us into an offense, that's not going to happen.  That's not going to happen.  Is Mel here?  (Laughter.)  So as long as she stays aggressive, I'm good.  I'll live with anything else she does, as long as she plays defense, gets ball pressure and when she feels pressure and sees an opportunity she attacks the basket and something good will happen.  Right now, that's what you can expect, what we can expect, I think, from Moriah and that's exactly what she did today.
THE MODERATOR:  Thank you, guys.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297