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March 16, 2013

Natasha Cloud

Cindy Griffin

Ashley Prim

Chatilla Van Grinsven



COACH GRIFFIN:  Wow, what a game.  Started out obviously down by 12 points I think it was, and the kids fought back and give Fordham a lot of credit.  They really came out strong.
But our kids were very resilient today, determined today, had a lot of desire today, and you know, just down the stretch we made plays when we needed to make plays.  They believed it.  You know, things did not always go our way.  The ball did not always bounce our way but these kids believed that they could win and we came out with the win.

Q.  Ashley, we have talked in the past you being the senior on the team, the fourth‑year senior, playing another game, playing another game, and now the realization that you have the Atlantic 10 Championship, what does that mean to you?
ASHLEY PRIM:  It means a lot.  I'm so excited for my team, and for myself, as well.  Just helping this team, being a senior point guard and trying to get us on the right track, everybody stepped up when they were supposed to and we did it.  We did it.  And this is what this year is leaving off to the next class, and I'm just so excited.  I'm so excited.

Q.  Ashley, being a senior, you guys came out down 12‑0, and you hit those free throws to have that break‑out run.  What did you tell the team after the time‑out to get them to rally around?  At halftime when there was a big adjustment I guess was made, you were on a 12‑0 run, what did you tell them, to keep your heads up and keep your team in the game?
ASHLEY PRIM:  It was a combination of myself, Natasha, Erin, everybody said we need to step it up.  We are not going to leave here with any regrets.  We have to do what it takes to win, because we have to leave it all on the floor and we weren't going to leave this gym without a win.

Q.  For Chatilla, things were not going well at the beginning, obviously could not score but you were doing other things, rebounding, how important was that to try to get the ship righted?
CHATILLA VAN GRINSVEN:  I think great defense always is getting us back in the game, especially for this team and it shows really the fight that we have in our team and determination.
I think we really showed that on the defensive end and of course making the plays, people like Natasha and Erin and Primmy making plays, great plays and great minutes just when we needed it.  Took us back in the game but definitely started out with defense.  Eventually, of course, I wish I was more effective on the offensive end, but today was not the day for me.  But I think the team did great and you know, we pulled it out.

Q.  Talking about offense, Natasha, you were aggressive at the beginning, you came out cold and you started pushing the momentum, even though you did miss a couple of shots what was your mind‑set?
NATASHA CLOUD:  I mean, Coach and the team has been harping on me being more aggressive as a scorer this year, because it's never really been my go‑to.  I've been more of a defensive player.
But everybody just kept telling me to shoot the ball because Rooney was so far off me.  Just my team having confidence in me, the coaching staff having confidence in me made my have confidence in myself, so I was just putting up the shots.

Q.  Ashley, what does it mean when you hear NCAA Tournament and St. Joe's is going now?
ASHLEY PRIM:  We are excited.  We just have to play, because it's one and done now, so we have to play without any regrets.  But it's just a great accomplishment to make it there and to win the Atlantic 10 Championship.
So we have to take the same thing, one game at a time, because we are one and done.  So we've accomplished this so we can get as far as we can in the NCAA.

Q.  Your overall reaction to being named most outstanding player?
NATASHA CLOUD:  I was surprised.  I'm not really the one that usually has the points, but I mean, my teammates‑‑ I give the credit to my teammates because they found me and they got me the award.  So my teammates get an award, too.

Q.  What do you have to say about Fordham as a program?
COACH GRIFFIN:  Coach Gaitley has done an unbelievable job with that group.  They really play well together, and they play with five or six kids and they can interchange them in so many different ways.
You really have to be able to defend multiple people, and you know, they came out really strong today, and did an unbelievable job.  You know, we were very happy that we were able to beat them today because they are a very good team.

Q.  Nice piece of neck wear you have, I don't think I've ever seen a coach coming in wearing a net post game.  What does it mean to get St. Joe's back to the NCAA Tournament for you?
COACH GRIFFIN:  It's been a long time coming.  I think with the win over Dayton, you think you have it, you know, but today was solidified with it.  We are going to enjoy Monday night.  We are going to enjoy knowing that we are in and our ticket is punched, and I'm going to enjoy seeing St. Joseph's across that ESPN line, at least for 24 hours, anyway.  It's unbelievable that the players that we had were able to step up.
And this isn't just for the players that are on our team now.  I feel as though it's for the players that have preceded them and had gone to the championship game and maybe came up empty a little bit.  Half of them or more than half of them are in the stands right now.  So to be able to celebrate not only with our present team, but our past team, is really special.

Q.  Erin going into the second half had not attempted a shot, was there an adjustment to get her more involved in the offense?  The first possession, she takes a jumpshot and finds Ashley Robinson underneath.  Seemed like the offense started to go through her the second half.
COACH GRIFFIN:  We knew she needed to get shots and we knew they were going to focus on her along with some other kids.  So we did go to her early in the second half just to get her some more touches.  You know, she made things happen.  That big three there late was huge.  She's a terrific player.  You know, we should get her the ball a little bit more.

Q.  What did you learn from the first match‑up with Fordham, and in particular, being able to limit Erin and Marah scoring‑ and shooting‑wise?
COACH GRIFFIN:  We learned that our two best defenders needed to be on their two best offensive players, and that's really what it was.  We did a good job for the most part on those two kids.
Natasha and Primmy had that responsibility throughout most of the game.  We watched a lot of film.  They were very focused today.  You know, the score is in the 40s, so there was not a whole lot of offense going on at either end.

Q.  Early in the game when you went down, do you think it was the defense that got you back into it, until the offense finally came around?
COACH GRIFFIN:  I do.  I think like a lot of teams, I think we score in bunches, and that was a big bunch there in the beginning.  I knew if we started to chip away, that we would be able to‑‑ we would be able to make a run at it, because our defense is solid.
You know, we depend on that when we are not making shots and not making the shots we were usually getting.  Natasha was struggling, we couldn't get Erin the ball.  Primmy came up making some plays there, just chipping away and chipping away.  And you know, I just think this team has a lot of resilience and a lot of determination.  Refuse to lose.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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