Post game quotes: March 10 vs. Stanford
March 10, 2012
Head Coach Lindsay Gottlieb
"Thanks all of you for being here and covering us. First thing I'd like to do is congratulate Stanford. Such a terrific basketball program. They do things the right way. They have great players. They're well coached, and they deserve, obviously, this Pac 12 Championship tonight. I said to anyone who will listen, recently, the more film I watch, I'm more impressed with Chiney and Nnemkadi. I think they may be the best on court ever in terms of what they are relied on to do. And that's before Nnemkadi started hitting threes from 30 feet. So obviously, all credit to them, we wish them well in the NCAA Tournament."
"The second thing I'd like to thank the Pac 12. This has been a first class event, and I really wanted our young women to come into this championship game, which is something you earn. You don't get that opportunity very well and really compete and give ourselves a chance to win and cut down nets. I couldn't be more proud of our effort today. I thought that we did that."
"I think we represented ourselves and our university well. I have really passionate players and talented players, and they're disappointed because they want to win, and we didn't come here for second place. But I think the future of our program is bright. I think we've got a really exciting couple weeks in front of us. And I know this group will be back here and maybe we can do some really special things down the road. We leave with our heads really high."
On what the team needs to do to get over the hump and be back in the championship game next year
"We can be a lot better, which is fun. It's encouraging. The first thing is obviously, sometimes we miss free throws and sometimes we turn the ball over. I think the more chances we give ourselves to put points on the board, the better we're going to be. We can play in that tempo."
"Stanford's a particularly tough match up for us because we score through the post so much and we have an advantage there that kind of negates that a little bit further. But I think as our players mature a little bit and take that next step, I think our competitive fire is there."
"It's at an elite level. I think our depth and versatility is at an elite level. I think the next step, talk about beating Top 10 teams is having all of that come together on a consistent basis and maybe shoring up some of our weaknesses."
On how the Pac-12 Tourney prepares the team for the NCAA Tournament
"Well, I think Tara says it all the time, the Pac 12 you know your opponents so well, it should prepare you for what you're going to face next. I think we give them challenge that's make them better. On the flip side, I absolutely feel like the way we competed today should make us even more dangerous in that tournament next weekend than we were coming into this. We're not often faced with that type of post play, a team that's so well prepared, a team that plays really hard. You want to raise each other up."
"I talked when I got the job about making Cal women's basketball one of the elite programs in the country. I think there are a lot of pieces that go into that. I think we're on the cusp of that. Absolutely having Stanford in our backyard or across the bay is something that helps us from a mental standpoint and a physical standpoint."
"If we bring this type of intensity and focus against whoever we're matched up with, I think we can do some special things because Stanford poses problems for us that we have to deal with that makes us better."
Junior guard Layshia Clarendon
On the effect last Sunday's game had on today's game
"We definitely had to put it away or we wouldn't have to then to where we are today. We put it in the back of our minds and scored it in our bank a little bit as we went through the tournament knowing we've got to beat Colorado. But if we want to get to Stanford, we have to beat Washington State. Want to get back to Stanford and get this chance. I think the biggest difference was just our fight and our toughness. Knowing that we're going out with the fight we're going out with. No matter what, we're going to hang our heads high. I don't think we could hang our head that's high after last Sunday. We just kind of knew we didn't bring it all. So we just brought all we could, and that's the way it goes."
On what kept them energized at the end of the game
"If you watched us play all year, I was still believing. With the last 3:00 minutes, you've seen us come back. Ohio State, Stanford the first time. I was still like we just need something. Something to get us going. You've got to fight till the end. Like Coach said, we're competitors. We're going to go to the end. That's just who we are."
Freshman forward Reshanda Gray
On the wall Stanford built in the paint "We just had to fight through it. We just had to be strong and not worry about any calls or anything. Just do us and do what we do best."