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Feb. 18, 2007

Recap | Box Score | PHOTO GALLERY media-icon-photogallery.gif


Debbie Ryan, Virginia head coach
On Florida State’s performance:
“They hit some tough shots. They ran a play where (Shante) Williams, who hadn’t scored the whole game, catches the ball on the elbow and makes that little fake and does not hand off, making two shots that way. That did not help. I thought it was (Alicia) Gladden at the end of the game who really hurt us the most. We just didn’t do a job of defending her. They were playing smaller, and of course Gladden is not small, but she is really a guard in the post position. They are also a little more flexible than we are, and it was tough to stop her.”

On her team’s performance:
“I thought my team played very well. I don’t think that we can play much better than that in terms of statistically. We scored 77 points with five people in double figures. We out-rebounded them. The turnover numbers weren’t good, but the rebound numbers should have off-set that a little bit. I thought our team showed great resilience. We were a little but flat coming out of the locker room, but we picked it back up and were able to get back in the game, and actually led a couple times. It was just such a tough game.”

On senior Siedah Williams:
“She had a really good game today, and she was very ready to play. She gave us eight rebounds. She played a good 27 minutes, and she hasn’t played that long in awhile either. She was really keyed up and ready to play, and I knew she was going to have a good game today.”

On the fan turnout today:
“The crowd was absolutely fabulous today. My hats off to the marketing people at Virginia. They did a terrific job of really selling us and bring people in, and the community has really fallen in love this team. They (the players) wanted so badly to win this game today and continue on their quest. They feel terrible right now, but I don’t know that I could have asked for more from my team. They gave tremendous effort, and they were tremendously prepared, and they did everything they could to win. A break here, a break there. A three here, a three there. It could have made all the difference.”

On whether the season is over:
“Two teams from our conference went to the NCAA tournament with 6-8 (ACC) records last year, so we’ve got lots of time. We are still alive. There’s still a heartbeat there. It’s like E.T. If we are going to play this well, and there are still two games to play, then we might as well go win them.”

On freshman Paulisha Kellum:
“She had a great game. She got tired towards the end there. I had to get her out because she was so tired, but she played a fabulous game today. I don’t think that there is much more you can ask from the kid. She was always in there, always after it. She is a solid player and a solid kid.”

More on Paulisha Kellum:
“I just think that Paulisha has really come into her own. She has grown tremendously over the last couple months. I have just seen her right before my eyes just change. She is ready to play at this level, and she is going to be a force to be reckoned with down the stretch here.”

On junior Sharnee Zoll:
“She wants to win. She is a player that wants to win very, very badly, and she will do whatever it takes to win. She stepped right up, and she had to hit the three [at the end of the game], and she did.”

On whether she was surprised that the Florida State coach called a time out with less than 3 seconds left in the game:
“Yes. It gave me a chance to at least get prepared. I couldn’t pass the ball, because the time would have run out.”

On senior Brenna McGuire’s last game:
“I felt really bad for her, because they [her three-point shots] were just barely off. It just wasn’t her day today.”

On the fact that Virginia has not yet played Clemson or Georgia Tech this year (the last two games of the season):
“The same thing happened last year. We hadn’t seen Clemson or Georgia Tech, and we played them the last two games of the season last year.”

Siedah Williams, senior
On playing on senior night:
“It was a bit emotional in the beginning. We came out hard in the beginning and throughout the game. We had our lulls, but I don’t think you could question our effort.”

On being escorted by fromer coach Tim Taylor on senior day:
“It shocked me at the first, because I didn’t know he was there. I heard somebody mention his name and I saw him running down from the stands and said he’d walk me down for senior night. When I first came here, that’s who our coach was, so it was nice.”

On the difference in the game:
“The first four minutes of the second half, they came out with more energy and went on a little run and that hurt us a lot. The rest of the second half we had to fight back, and it was see-sawing a little bit, but we couldn’t come out with win.”

On the atmosphere at JPJA:
“I didn’t really notice any difference in any other games. The crowd was great, and they were on their feet and we were trying to get them pumped up. The atmosphere was just great, and it’s a great place to play.”

Lyndra Littles, sophomore
On the rest of the season:
“Coach Ryan mentioned in the locker room after the game that, as sorry that we are that we couldn’t get this win for the seniors, we’ve still got a few games to play and we’re not going to quit.”

On Paulisha Kellum’s play:
“She might be a little overshadowed, but I think that makes her a better player. Teams will focus more on Monica Wright and when Pooh gets in there, they sleep on her and forget about her, and she’s just like a firecracker when she’s in there; she’s so explosive, she’s so strong. I don’t know too many guards that are as strong as her. When she’s in there and she’s coming towards you, she’s going to run you over.”

On Zoll’s shots at the end:
“Sharneé has heart and a desire to win. I wouldn’t want anyone else to take those last shots, because she just has a will to win, and she’ll do her best to carry us. I don’t care if she misses all of them, I’m going to tell her to keep shooting, because she makes all of them in practice. They were big shots even though we didn’t come out with the win.”

On close finishes:
“We’ve been so close in so many games that to finish so strong and to finish with a win, of course that helps. But then to come back and lose in this game after winning the Tech game, it’s like what didn’t we do in this game that we did in the other game.”

Sue Semrau, Florida State coach
On Virginia:
“Virginia is a very good basketball team and very young as well. They’re not losing much this year and for us to step up and answer the shots they were able to knock down, I’m very proud of my basketball team.”

On stellar free throw shooting:
“We’ve been a lot better as a free throw shooting team. We’re about 70% free throw shooting in conference play, and we’re getting the right people to the line. In non-conference you’re testing a lot of things out. I think at Virginia Tech we shot 80% and for those kids to step up and do that kind of job was great.”

On team organization:
“I heard a lot of who has who, who has who, and at that point you can’t have any mistakes. So at that point we made sure we were matched and they couldn’t get anything over our heads. We knew we were going to take people off the line as soon as Brittany made that first one; who was going to pick up the ball, what we were looking for. Against a young team, I think it was important that we settled down and showed some organization.”

On Lyndra Littles:
“She is so tough to guard. She can do so many different things and she’s so young. I think her athletic ability, her skill, her heart for the game of basketball is outstanding. Someone that’s undersized that can do the things she does has won our admiration for sure.”

On the atmosphere at JPJA:
“I think more than type of game is the type of atmosphere you guys provide in this arena. It was tournament-like. The arena is gorgeous with all the amenities; it’s more like Greensboro than a lot of the places we go. I thought it was important the number of fans you had, I don’t know what the official attendance was, but it was great. At the point you needed the fans the most, they stepped up. I thought it was a big lift for Virginia. The type of game I could have lived without, but it was nice to see that we could go on the road and win a big game.”

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