Nov. 18, 2015

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University of Notre Dame Women’s Basketball
Notre Dame vs. Toledo – Notre Dame, Indiana – Nov. 18, 2015

Head Coach Muffet McGraw

On the game…
“I was really happy with the defense today. There was so much improvement in just a couple days. There was a renewed energy and intensity. I thought our zone looked really good. We seemed to communicate a little bit better. Overall, very pleased. I thought the rebounding was better. Generally, everything looked better. Offensively, we did some really good things in the second half. I think we are going to continue to get better offensively as we work on our combinations and people in the game. I thought Lindsay (Allen) looked superb – it was great to have her on the floor for all that time. Having Taya (Reimer) back was a huge boost for all of us. It was really important to get her back in the lineup. So, really happy with everybody today.”

On the switch to the zone…
“We hadn’t shown it before and didn’t play much of it last year. They were probably expecting a little bit more man-to-man. I thought the way we played the zone was smart. We communicated well and helped each other well. They missed some shots. They had some open shots that they missed and they were pressing a little bit after missing a few shots. We could have turned the game around even quicker if we had made some shots offensively.”

On inside points…
“I thought Taya and Kathryn (Westbeld) were working hard inside. Brianna (Turner) was a little bit off today, but I thought those two did a really good job. I thought we were looking inside, trying to post them up more than we did last game, and we were a little bit more effective doing it.”

On Taya Reimer
“I think the big thing with Taya is her experience. She has big game experience. She has the defensive ability and is a good communicator. With everything she does, she makes us a little bit more confident because she has done it all before. Having that experience in the lineup is really important for us.”

On what she told her team at halftime…
“I was really happy at halftime. They only had 17 points and that was just great defense. That’s all we can control – we can’t control the ball going into the basket. I thought that the shots we were getting were good. Maybe we took a couple too many threes. I thought we could’ve gone inside more. We never got to the foul line, but there were a couple of quarters where nobody got to the foul line. I thought it was a really well-officiated game, where we could play our game. I thought we could’ve tried a little harder to get some contact by driving the ball.”

Madison Cable – Guard – Graduate Student

On the zone…
“We threw a different look at them. We tried the zone and it started working really well. We were communicating on the screens, trying to get rebounds, and I think we disrupted them a little bit so we stuck with it.”

On the offense…
“We tried to play good defense, which leads to offense. Some of our shots weren’t going in, so we tried to pick it up on defense to create points.”

Kathryn Westbeld – Forward – Sophomore

On her game…
“It’s being in the right spot at the right time. It’s easy looking high-low. I know Taya found me a couple of times, Lindsay found me, too. We ran the floor well with defense leading into offense is really what helped.”

Lindsay Allen – Guard – Junior

On the team’s mindset at halftime…
“I think we focused on slowing down and taking our time. I think we had forced a few passes, which led to turnovers for them and easy baskets. So we focused on taking our time, working our sets, and calming down. We had some easy shots that we were missing around the basket.”

Toledo Team Quotes

Head Coach Tricia Cullop

On the game…
“I was proud of our effort in the first half and the fact that we could hang within 10 or 11 points. We felt good going into halftime. The zone they played really gave us fits. When they went to the matchup zone, we really struggled. It just shut us down entirely. They have good length, [Brianna] Turner really clogs up the middle as a shot blocker, and they cover a lot of distance in a short amount of time. We would kick to a corner and think we would have a shot, but they would cover it pretty well. I thought their defense was the difference in the game because we really struggled to get a good look. I was just so impressed with how well Notre Dame passes, shoots, and shares the ball. It’s a fun style of basketball to watch because they are so unselfish and make you pay any time you overcommit on defense.”

On Notre Dame’s defense…
“We didn’t execute what we were trying to do offensively very well. We didn’t move the ball fast enough and I thought we were very stagnant. I think when you’re facing a matchup zone, you have to move and cut, screen, and attack, and I thought we didn’t move the ball very well. I thought late we finally figured it out and finally got our kids to do what we wanted them to do coming out in the second half.”

On what her team takes away from this game
“We played this type of a schedule out of the gate so that we could get better. I think what you learn from playing a team like Notre Dame is how hard you have to play every game in order to have a chance. I thought we fought hard in the first half, but I thought since we weren’t getting open looks in the second half, we let down our intensity. I think it’s a great lesson to learn, and I’d rather play a team like Notre Dame than play a team we beat by 20 or 30. We wouldn’t learn anything. Despite the differential in points, I’m glad we did this so that we could get better.”