Feb. 6, 2010

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Notre Dame Women’s Basketball
Notre Dame vs. Pittsburgh
February 6, 2010
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center – Notre Dame, Ind.

Head Coach Muffet McGraw

On the play of Skylar Diggins
“Skylar had an incredible stat line. The big number however, was zero – zero turnovers. That was huge, just a fantastic game start to finish. You could tell from the beginning of the game she came out ready. Skylar is having a great year. She’s played well right from the beginning of the season. She really did an outstanding job of going after the rebounds today. That was probably the last piece that was missing and now we can expect a double-double from her for the rest of her career.”

Initial thoughts after the game…
“I thought we really did a great job taking care of the ball. I thought we were a little uncharacteristically sloppy at the end of the game but we made up for it with out lack of turnovers in the first half. We also finally outrebounded somebody, which was nice. It’s always good to see that.”

On the lopsided amount of free throws for Notre Dame…
“We were aggressive and just did a nice job inside. They handled our press well so we really didn’t foul much. They were so wide open when they shot it that we really didn’t have a chance to foul them.”

On outscoring Pittsburgh in the paint…
“It is pretty hard to believe that we outscored them, especially with the size that they have. I thought that was very impressive. We really did a nice job of attacking the basket off of the dribble. Natalie and Skylar were good down low, but (Lindsay) Schrader was unstoppable. When they went man-to-man we did a really nice job of not settling for jump shots.”

On Notre Dame’s defense…
“I was really disappointed in our defense. Seventy-six points is unforgiveable. We have a lot of work to do with our defense.”

Notre Dame Players

Skylar Diggins – Fr. – F

On her impressive first half…
“I just felt like I was getting open looks. My teammates did a good job of setting me up today. We wanted to make sure that we came out aggressive. Coach (Muffet McGraw) really emphasized attacking them and getting them in foul trouble and we did a good job of that. As far as rebounding goes, Coach was on me this week about rebounds this week and she challenged me. I came out with a chip on my shoulder for rebounding and I wanted to see how many I could get. I was not worried about my stats, I was just playing, and I think that’s what I’m doing better. I’m not playing not to make a mistake. I’m being competitive and just trying to let the game come to me.”

On Notre Dame’s rebounding…
“I thought we did a good job of crashing the boards. They are a big team. For me personally, I just wanted to get in there. I watched some tape and I didn’t realize how much I was standing around.”

Lindsay Schrader – Sr. – F

On Pittsburgh’s size…
“I think we had to go around their big players. Some of us got our shots blocked. We couldn’t try to go up over them. Once we started going around them they started fouling us. I think we did a good job of attacking the basket.”

Pittsburgh Quotes

Agnus Berenato – Head Coach

General remarks…
“I want to complement Notre Dame, and I think they played a really good game today. I thought it was a fabulous environment and I want to thank the crowd for being here today. You have a team that’s number 3 in the country and a team that is on the struggle bus. We are 1-8 in our conference, and it’s a 10-point game. Look at us with only 10 turnovers, and that’s a fabulous effort in the game; stats show the intangibles of the game. The game was not a lot of turnovers or steals, it was a well executed game.”

Positives of the game…
“We had four players in double figures and we need to have at least four players in double figures. I thought Selena (Nwude) came in and did a great job for us. I thought Chelsea (Cole) started out fabulous, but she got fouls and was taken out of the game. She was out of the game because of foul problems. I feel like we are getting better. We are starting to get it together. The most important thing is that everyday we get better and enjoy the game and respect the game. I felt today my team got better.”

On guarding Skylar Diggins
“Our plan in the beginning wasn’t to give her anything open. We know she is a great player and she had a hot hand. I thought Notre Dame did a great job feeding the hot hand. What she was able to do on us was to curl hard and either go for the lay-up or pull up for a jump shot. I think in the second half we did a much better job with her.”

Shayla Scott – Junior – Forward

On playing well defensively…
“I think just like Coach was saying our game plan was to prevent the 3 point shot and not allow shots in the paint. It comes down to practice. I think we need to work on defense and on our chemistry not only on offense but also on defense. We need to work on helping each other and having good rotations in zone. It takes being confident in being in the right spots and helping each other out on the court. Having good defense will create a better offense for us.”

On lack of turnovers…
“Coach always tells us when the defense gears up we need to slow down offensively. I think we take pride in listening and executing this. We need to play relaxed and take care of the ball which will give us more opportunities to score.”