March 19, 2010
Texas A&M Head Coach Gary Blair
"After what happened yesterday on the men's side of the tournament I have plenty of ammunition to go into my practices before the game. We have to treat every game like a Big 12 game. We are going into each game like we are playing Nebraska, Texas, or Oklahoma. By the time we play Portland State they will be the Los Angeles Lakers, and Claire [Faucher] will be Kobe Bryant. My assistants do a great job of getting us prepared and there will not be one stone left unturned. We give that opponent that night 100% of our attention and we will not start thinking about anything else until about 30 minutes after our game."
On Tanisha Smith
"She has the ability to create offense off of her passing. If she was a little more selfish she would be the leading scorer on our team, but she sometimes passes up good shots to set her teammates up with better opportunities. That just shows the unselfishness of this team."
On how far A&M has come
"When you inherit a bad program, like I did with Texas A&M a number of years ago the first thing you start with is your defense. You go out and you find players that are going to work well and play in a system. We had to develop a defensive mentality first. We have to play pressure defense no matter if we are playing half-court man, in a full court press, or even in a zone. Our entire system is about pressure."
G Sydney Colson, Jr.
On being at the tournament:
"I think for me it is really cool that we have made it to the NCAA Tournament these past last three years in a row. I think it is a really good thing for our program. Looking at how Texas A&M started off when Coach Blair got there, I think we have made some really big strides and people recognize us a little more now; we are glad to get this recognition and we are glad that all of our hard work has paid off to make it here another year. We have worked really hard this year and we are excited to be at this point and we are ready to take on whatever challenges are ahead of us."
G Sydney Carter, So.
On the team's cohesion
"I actually think that now we are playing well with great chemistry offensively, as well as defensively. It think we started the season off and we were not clicking like we should have or we did last year defensively. We had a couple leaks we had to patch up, but I think now we are really popping out with our strengths offensively and it makes us a threat that everyone out there can score. Defensively we are really getting after people, how we are known to do so, and I think that defensively and offensively we have good chemistry and we are playing well together."
On not underestimating opponents
"We are the type of team that takes it one game at a time and of course we are not overlooking anyone. For an instance, we overlooked a team last year and we came up short. As far as we go is as far as we go.
G/F Tanisha Smith, Sr.
On what the team did to improve to this point
"I would say our defense and taking coaching. Our team works real hard on the defensive end. We didn't have as much defensive pressure as coach wanted us and we have worked real hard to this point on rebounding. Rebounding has been a big key for us and taking coaching. Knowing when to take criticism and know when they are trying to push you real hard. Taking that and doing the little things that coaches want us to do has got us to this point."
F Damitria Buchanan, Sr.
On the game tomorrow
"Just playing well, playing hard. We've been clicking really well lately and we always seem to play better towards the end of the season, so just going out there and accomplishing what we've been doing recently to get the job done so we can get to the next round and possibly San Antonio, as well. Just executing a game plan and getting it done."
On Portland State
"Portland State has a good point guard who can shoot the ball, but we have a game plan and we execute against any team we play, regardless of who they are, so we just go out there and play hard. It's March Madness, all teams are competitive so we're trying to go out there and be the aggressor."
On the emotions of the NCAA Tournament
"It's an amazing experience, you never know. Everybody who made it to the tournament is a good team, so you can't underestimate anybody because of their seeding. You just go out there and play people like you would play anybody in your conference or anybody in your preseason, just play as hard as you can. It's competitive, exciting, and a good opportunity for our team and the program to be able to get out here and play hard."
F/C Danielle Adams, Jr.
On the game tomorrow
"I'm really focused right now. I think our whole team is focused. We're just looking to make it to the next round and keep going until we get to San Antonio." On what's keeping her focused "Just thinking about playing for a national championship is keeping me focused right now. I mean, I know this team can go to the championship game, so I know what we're capable of. I'm just going one game at a time."
On Portland State
"They have a good point guard and great three-point shooters, so we're looking to defend on the outside as well as the inside. We have one of the best defenses in the country, we're just looking to maintain that."