Women's Basketball Media Day Quotes

Oct. 11, 2010


Women’s Basketball Media Day

Monday, October 11, 2010

Head Coach Bonnie Henrickson

Opening Statement:

“Let me just address one thing first and then go on to how excited I am about the season. Senior Nicollette Smith is on a leave of absence right now for personal reasons.

Where we are right now I’m absolutely excited with the four freshmen and the returners and the work they have put in this fall, it has been a great offseason for us. If you look at the most productive summer we have had from a strength and conditioning standpoint that has been impressive. I like our speed, I like our length, I like our athleticism and I love the fact that Angel Goodrich is back, obviously.

Our rules have changed for those of you that do not know, we have actually been able to start practicing earlier so we have a couple of practices under our belt. We go back 40 days from our first scheduled game and we get 30 opportunities to practice, so we went a couple of times last week. It’s been exciting to get on the floor with this group. Angel is back penetrating and driving and dropping passes only Angel Goodrich can throw. Carolyn Davis and Monica Engelman have grown their game, and just the obvious experience those two gained in difficult situations – more so Monica than Carolyn obviously – but for those two to be put in situations the majority of the second half of the season, and to win games for us, should certainly impact the confidence and the experience those two have going into their sophomore campaign.

I think when you look at the young group of guards; Keena Mays who had a death in the family – that’s why Keena wasn’t here today – has been the most impressive as far as playmaking ability. She can put it on the floor and has vision like Angel does, has thrown a couple of passes – that didn’t surprise me because I have watched Keena play since she was very, very young – but might have surprised a couple of her teammates possibly. She’s a very, very crafty passer, very good off the dribble, very good playmaking guard, someone who can play both the point and either wing position.

Brooke Jelniker has probably been the most consistent of the freshmen from the two months they spent here in the summer, and then in practice as a kid who is a spacer who -as we talked in recruiting her – wants to be on the floor with all of these athletes who can make plays and put it on the floor, because she brings us the much needed ability to knock down a three and space the defense so she’s done that.

CeCe Harper is another kid who can play the point and the wing, so if you are looking at that, Angel can play the point, Keena can play the point and CeCe can play the point, so we have three people that can play that position. I’m obviously excited about that, but CeCe has shot it well from the three, she has made plays off the dribble, her basketball IQ – really the whole freshmen class has really high basketball IQ’s – so their learning curve has been pretty good so far even though we have only had a couple of workouts.

Diara Moore has been good off the dribble as well, defensively I think she can find a niche for herself and get on the ball and be a good defender.

The other returner on the perimeter is Marisha Brown, I think that once Marisha accepts and embraces a role for us that she can be a very good defender and she can be a great rebounder – in fact can be a great defender if she wants to be, if she chooses that path – I think she’s capable of doing that and capable of helping us on the boards, on the perimeter, those two things out of the gate, even though she did not get a lot of time last year, her experience of playing at this level can help us as those young kids grow and learn and get better. Aishah Sutherland had a much better sophomore year than she did a freshman year, for her we need the consistency that I think she should be able to bring now as a junior. Marisha and Aishah had the most impressive summers in the weight room. Their numbers were significantly higher in all of their Olympic lifts and their explosiveness from the summer before.

Krysten Boogaard looks good, she’s running, she’s put on the weight that we needed her to; it is always a challenge for her to keep that on. I think for us, with Carolyn being able to score the ball so well, we have talked about the length in the summer with Carolyn and Krysten, and finding a way to play those two at the same time. Krysten is talented enough that we need to get her on the floor and let her play with Carolyn some. I’m not committing to any minutes right now but I think find a way for those two to be on the floor together. We either take advantage of having them on the floor or whoever we are playing; take advantage of being able to play some perimeter defense.

We’ll be able to mix it up in transition, typically we have always been – especially with Angel at the point – rebound an outlet to the point guard, but if you’ve got any combination of Angel, Keena and CeCe, can get out and receive the outlet pass and let that person make a play in transition. So you could see Angel on the wing, you could see her out in transition trying to make a play. It allows us to get into transition a lot quicker. We have experimented playing it that way previously but we have not had great decision makers. I think that will allow us to use our speed even better, to get it into a playmakers hand as soon as we can.”

On whom she thinks the leading scorers on the team will be:

“I think Carolyn (Davis) obviously, the ball will have to go through her – the good thing about Carolyn is she is a good passer. The ball has to go inside a lot; I don’t think anybody will have the green light that Danielle (McCray) had. It seems right now that it would be Carolyn and Monica (Engelman), and maybe Angel (Goodrich) can surprise us too. Angel is a very underrated jump-shooter.”

On if she feels more pressure is on her this year:

“I felt that pressure every year I have been here, I’m the one who has to go to bed every night and wake up every morning with the decisions I’ve made. No one expects more than I do; the pressure that I feel comes from within. I want these kids and the program to be successful, and I want the fans to experience the success.”

On if Angel Goodrich is more vocal this year:

“She is – it’s interesting, we voted over the weekend; Carolyn, Monica and Angel are our three captains, those three have shown the most leadership ability. I even asked Angel, I felt like she took that step across the threshold that shows she understands everyone needs support. She understands it’s necessary for her to be a leader this year – she’s been great with the freshmen; when an assistant coach is not working with them, Angel is. She may not be the loudest voice in the gym, but she does a lot one-on-one, even off the court she helps.”

On how Tania Jackson will help in the post:

“I’ve talked to Tania about being the ‘X-Factor’ this year, she is a very competitive kid – she shoots the three as well as anyone on the team, I even would have said that last year. She’s been in all of our workouts so far this year and she’s been in every practice. She’s a great shooter, very strong and she doesn’t mind being physical, she embraces that. She can guard any post player – she is that athletic. She brings depth, and (is) a great shooter.”

On Monica Engelman’s improvements:

“She passes the ball very well, but I don’t want her to turn herself into a strictly-passing guard. She’s a good pull-up jump shooter, she’s a good three-point shooter. She might want to step back and let some of her teammates play-make for her at times – I don’t want her to try and change her game as much. She needs to shoot the ball more consistently, will help us.”

Player Quotes

Sophomore Guard Angel Goodrich

On how her injured knee feels going into the season:

“It feels good, the doctors cleared everything up, and it’s ready to go.”

On if she is nervous about playing on two previously injured knees:

“It doesn’t really come into my mind when I’m playing. I just have to go out there and do what I’m supposed to do – I have to help my teammates and not think about it.”

On looking forward to playing with Carolyn Davis:

“I’m very excited, she played very well last year after I was injured, I can’t wait to go out there and finally play with Carolyn.”

On replacing Danielle McCray and Sade Morris:

“Right now we’re just focused on what we need to do on the court, getting ready and working out every day.”

On what the feeling was after missing the season after having surgery on her second knee:

“It was really tough, just knowing all the rehab I would have to do after doing it on the first knee. I knew what was going to happen, and what I had to do – I knew what was coming. It definitely prepared me a lot more knowing what was expected of me and what I need to do to get back on the court. I think about it sometimes when I’m on the court, it’s hard not to. I just can’t do that, I have to look forward and do what I have to do.”

On if she will be the same player coming back from the injury:

“I think I’m a lot stronger. It helped a lot that I was able to watch from the bench during my injury. I was able to learn more about my teammates, and I’ll be able to be a better teammate and be more vocal.”

Senior Center Krysten Boogaard

On getting to know the freshmen during the summer:

“I was away for a little bit this summer, but for the most part, we have all connected very well – we will have great team chemistry this year.”

On the goals and expectations for the year:

“Obviously our season goals are to win championships. We want to win a Big 12 Championship, go to the NCAA tournament and have a great year.”

On what the team will have to do to fill the shoes left by the graduating class:

“Obviously Danielle (McCray) and Sade (Morris) were great members of our team; I think we have great freshmen, and we have people who know what needs to be done, and I think we will have a great year.”

On how Angel Goodrich has handled another rehab for her knee injury:

“I think she’s handled it really great – I’ve never seen anybody come out of an ACL injury like she has. I’ve been told that she has made really strong recoveries very quickly – I’m really proud of her for being so strong throughout the whole process. And I think everybody on the team has played a big part of that.”

On how the team has dealt with the injuries:

“I think the important thing is not to feel sorry for ourselves, everybody needs to step up individually. Of course, injuries are devastating to every team, but it’s important to keep your hopes up and get to where you want to go.”

Freshman Guard Charlicia (CeCe) Harper

On the goals for the season as a freshman:

“I want to help the team grow from last year any way I can.”

On how it helps knowing Monica Engelman coming in as a freshman:

“It definitely made it more comfortable for me to transition from high school to college; it really helps to know someone and know how the college life works.”

On how the upperclassmen have helped to welcome the freshmen:

“Everyone was very welcoming from the beginning, nobody tries to downplay anybody. Everybody motivates and helps everyone on the team.”

Sophomore Forward Carolyn Davis

On replacing Danielle McCray and Sade Morris’ production from last year:

“We are just going with the teamwork thing. We are all coming together and we all have the same goal. We are not looking at anything negative from last year or losing anybody. We are just looking forward to who we have on the court.”

On getting to play against Baylor’s Brittney Griner at home this year:

“It’s Brittney Griner. She is 6-8. It’s a difficult match up, but it is a fun match up. It is good to say I scored 28 points on her and to say that I stopped her every once in a while. It is just an exciting matchup to have.”

On playing against Griner in high school:

“The first game was good. I had never heard of her until I got there and I realized that she is kind of big. The first game I didn’t know much about her so I played like I didn’t know much about her. All the hype she gets kind of scares people, but I am ready for it.”

On helping the freshmen adjust to the college game:

“The first year flew by. It’s crazy to say that I’m a sophomore now and that I am helping freshmen do the things that I was having trouble with. I don’t forget anything that happened. I remember everything I learned last year and everything that happened. I’m happy that I went through all of the things I went through.”

On her confidence this year:

“It’s really good to have that experience. I played against a lot of people that I will play against this year. That is going to help me a lot. I’m glad I got that chance. My coaches and my teammates helped me build that confidence that I have.”

Junior Forward Aishah Sutherland

On getting better in the offseason:

“I’ve been working a lot on shooting. We have a 30,000 shot club. I’ve been shooting a lot and working in the weight room. I actually clean one of the highest cleans in women’s basketball. I’ve been working a lot on getting stronger and shooting.”

On having a leadership role this season:

“Everything I know and I went through I tell the younger girls. I try to guide them into fitting in with the team.”

On continuing to improve her mid-range game:

“I’m able to drive from the free throw line and from the three point line. I’ve got a lot better mid-range game now. I’m able to shoot and dribble a lot better. I’ve been working a lot on that. That’s what I’ve done the most this offseason. “

On playing with Angel Goodrich again this season:

“I’m very excited. She’s a great player and a great passer. She fakes me out sometimes on the floor. She will open the court up a lot for everybody. It’s hard to guard us when we have a good guard.”

Sophomore Guard Monica Engelman

On this year’s team:

“We’re a young team and we’re an athletic team. I am expecting a lot of good things and new challenges for myself if I am coming into a leadership role.”

On how the freshmen are progressing so far this season:

“All four of the freshmen can have a great impact on what the season is going to look like. They are all athletic and they all have their own characteristics to bring to the game.”

On how she has improved from last season:

“I’ve been in the gym and I feel like I have matured more as a player and as a person. I know what it is going to take to take my game to the next level.”

On what she has improved the most:

“For me, it’s being more mature on my shot. Coach Chester (Nichols) has been telling me to jump straight up and straight down. I have been working more on my handles and improving my rebounding.”

On where she originally learned to shoot:

“One of my strongest things throughout my game was shooting. Everyone else was good at ball handling and I was good at shooting. I’ve built up my dribbling skills, but I will give credit to the coaches I’ve had in AAU, Charlie Harper who is (freshman) CeCe (Harper’s) father. He worked a lot with me throughout high school on improving my shot.”

On the return of Angel Goodrich:

“When she came back and started playing pick-up with us, that was the most fun I’ve had playing pick-up in awhile. She’s awesome to play with and she has tremendous passing skills. It’s really fun.”