Eastern Michigan and Toledo Quotes

Updated 3/9/2012
Opening statement of Eastern Michigan Head Coach Ann Marie Gilbert 
“First of all I would like to say, ‘what a great game.’  I ‘m really thrilled with the way our team fought, the way our team played.  We got outplayed in this game for most of the game by a very well coached, very hardnosed Toledo basketball team.  I have so much respect for Tricia Cullop and her basketball team, and what they were able to do this year.  How about those Eagles. These two ladies are our two go to players.  I’m just really thrilled on what they were able to accomplish with our defense in the second half.”

Tavelyn James on being one win away from a MAC Championship
“I think this game was a challenge for us to know that we deserved being in the Championship.  We played down to the level of our opponent.  I feel like tomorrow should be easier because we know what we expect and we know what we can do.”

Natachia Watkins on staying tough and mentally ready throughout the game
“We just kept telling each other that we have to be up at the next media, and we have to rebound because it was a big factor that happened in the game for the most part and defense.”

Head coach Ann Marie Gilbert on forcing 27 turnovers
“I was asked that question earlier and we expect to force 27 turnovers, but we expect to score more off the turnovers that we forced.  We always have hope that there is going to be a turning point in the game.  There was a turning point, when the momentum swarmed back to us.  It happened very late, but we just don’t quit.  We’ve been a very resilient basketball team.”

Head coach Ann Marie Gilbert on if the bye into the semi’s affected Eastern Michigan
“I do.  I’m not a big long layoff person.  We were like Central (Michigan) last year.  We were a five seed that made it to the Championship game.  We are trying to convince our team that the five seed did not win last year, so don’t let them win this year.  We felt like playing those games gave us some momentum and gave us an opportunity to get the kinks out as we got to Cleveland. I was nervous about this game.”

Opening statement of Toledo Head Coach Tricia Cullop
“I could not be more proud of my team.  I thought they gave everything they had today.  They played hard.  This is a team that punched us in the stomach the last time we played them.  I think today we proved that we’re every bit as good as them.  We let up for one minute at the end and it cost us.  I could not be more proud of my seniors and their leadership this entire season.  To lose a marquee player like Naama [Shafir] is hard.  If I had said we’d lose her and win 21 games you guys wouldn’t have believed me.  We did that because of our leadership.  We watched this team mature and learn more about everything.  Learned how to overcome adversity and pull together and become mature adults.  I’m truly honored to be their coach.” 

Courtney Ingersoll on EMU’s pressure giving them trouble
“They’re a quick team.  They get hands in your face and get hands on the ball.  In our defense a lot of the turnovers could have been prevented by us.  We had some poor passes and forced some other passes.”

Yolanda Richardson on how shocking the outcome was
“I’m still in shock.  We kept saying keep on playing these last three minutes and we’ll be there.  They hit those key shots and it was out of our hands before we knew it.”

Toledo Head coach Tricia Cullop on the end of the game 
“In my opinion it became very physical.  There were some plays that we tried to run and their was some pushing and they won the war of physicality.  I wish we could have gotten to the free throw line more.  We tried to run some plays but unfortunately it didn’t go that way.  It came down to too many turnovers, too many offensive rebounds.  We didn’t do a good enough job of boxing out.  There were several possessions where we played tremendous defensively and they got the offensive board and got a fresh shot clock.”