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Penn at Virginia
Jan. 16, 2011
Postgame Quotes

Virginia head coach Debbie Ryan
Opening Statement:

“It was a hard game for us to play today and I think more mentally than physically. You’ve got to give Penn a lot of credit. They came in here with nothing to lose and just played. We were playing with the weight of the world on our shoulders and you could see it in every play. I think that one of the things that happens when you go through a stretch like we’ve been through, you start to question and wonder. That is just what happens. You’ve got to find a way to get them just to focus on the here and now and not worry about what’s happened in the past. Just stay with what you normally do.”

On a non-conference game coming in a good time:
“It comes at a great time actually because it gave us a chance to put some things in and work on some things. It helps me to see where people are and how they’re going to handle things like this. I think this is a very good teaching moment.”

On getting a win:
“It is a good feeling. It is a good way to finish the weekend. I know that this team will be very very ready on Friday night. I have absolutely positively no concern about that. I want them to see that. I want them to feel that. I want them to see that and understand it.”

On having a young team:
“Unfortunately, the inconsistency is what you deal with and that is the hard part. The kids coming off the bench tonight just didn’t seem to have any energy or any pop. The weird thing about that is that they won every competition in the last two days [in practice]. They played very well the last two days. They have been hot on the floor and they got in the game today and it looks like they didn’t have anything. It was just very strange, so I had to put the starters back in.”

On the play of Chelsea Shine and Simone Egwu:
“They played really well because they went to a 2- 3 zone. Chelsea is really good at finding openings in the zone. She did a good job of finding Simone, and I thought she played extremely well today with finding Simone and giving her the opportunity to shoot lay-ups and Simone finished well and did a good job in there.”

Virginia forward Chelsea Shine
On the first-half lead:

“We constantly talked about the team. It’s been a frustrating and emotional past couple of weeks. I’ve struggled and it’s been tough, but it’s awesome the encouragement and support I’ve had, nonstop, from my teammates and my coaches and even from fans – I’ve gotten some emails. But just getting in there every day and continuing to work, whether it was today or will be next week, there’s a breakthrough at some point that this team is going to have. That I am going to have. That each individual player is going to have. We constantly talk about that and work toward that because we’ve been feeling kind of down, but the cool thing about this team is that we go through this kind of stuff together and always come out on the other side. We learn from it and take a great deal from it in order to make us stronger and better.”

How good it felt to get the win:
“This was one of those games that reminded me of the Virgin Islands. The first two games we were down; it was hard and it was tough. And that’s just kind of how we’re feeling. We were hungry for a win and were exhausted from the emotions that go with losing and the weight you have to carry with that. I think you saw tonight, and what we saw in practice, was that people were going to do whatever needed to be done to get that win. I know it wasn’t the prettiest thing in the world, but it’s a win. We’ll take it and we’ll be able to go back and watch it and take a lot of good things from the game. It’s a good feeling and a big sigh of relief. Now, we’ll really be able to start focusing for Friday night.”

On maybe being back in a groove:
“I hope so. I continue to work everyday in practice with the team. We make each other better. I really think that’s where everything starts and then when the game comes, it’s the game flow. I try to let it come to me and let it come to the girls on the team. It’s all in a flow. It’s going to be a good couple of days of practice that we get before Maryland in order to really tone up and key up everything for the game.”

On how hard Virginia’s schedule is:
“It is a really, really hard schedule. I think it’s awesome that we get to compete against the top-ranked teams in the country. And we learn from every game we play. No matter who we play, we’re trying to keep a level of competitiveness and poise every time we step on the court, so that we can play the same game tonight as we would play against Maryland. Obviously, it’s different levels of teams, but playing against the best only makes you better. Win or lose, you can learn so much from them. I really think that’s what we’ve done so far this year. We’ve taken out every good and bad thing that we can, and we’ve learned from it. I do definitely think that in a conference like this, where every team is really, really good, that we’re learning a lot from every game we play.”

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