Jan. 5, 2012
COACH BLUDER: Well, we picked a fine time to finally make a three. (Laughter).
You know, Kamille has done that twice for us now this year. That's what you want, is your seniors to step up, want the ball in their hands, knock it down with confidence. For her to be 0 for 3 from three point range and to step up and make that, it was huge. And I think it really just took all the wind out of their sails for that over time.
I'm really proud of our team for battling, keep believing. I thought over zone defense was very good tonight. Our halfcourt stuff was pretty good tonight. Morgan had a double double. Kalli Hansen I thought came in and played some really great minutes for us, and I need to thank the crowd, because I thought they were tremendous, especially in the end. They hung in there with us, and really gave us some life at the end of the game.
As you said, the three pointer but you had to have them. Did you just know that it was time?
COACH BLUDER: Well, we had to go for it. I will continue to believe in our three point shooters, no matter what, because they are the right people to shoot the ball. They are good three point shooters, and it's just a matter of time. And for us, it just happened at the last 12 seconds of this game.
How is Samantha now?
COACH BLUDER: I don't know yet. I haven't heard yet. It was her ankle. I thought it was her knee when I first went out there and it scared me quite a bit. I was glad no injury is a good injury, and a bad ankle sprain can last a long time. So I don't know the severity of it.
Right ankle; right? Correct?
COACH BLUDER: Correct. Yes.
Were you worried about attrition towards the end of the game?
COACH BLUDER: Well, you always worry about when your players go down, because you have to adjust at that point. We had to adjust for Melissa not being in there tonight; and then Sam goes down and we have to adjust for that; and Morgan goes out and we don't know if she's going to come back.
And so your team has to make adjustments at that point, but yeah, you certainly worry about your players getting hurt, and we just seemed to have our share again.
How big was a win like this, because you don't want to be 1 2 in the Big Ten. Not saying must win, but how big was this win?
COACH BLUDER: I thought it was a great win. Illinois is a good team, one of the best defensive teams we probably went again this year. They are holding their opponents to 60 points a game. They are forcing about 21 overs on their opponents, and we only had ten turnovers tonight and I thought that was really good.
Even though we didn't score many 3s we got to the free throw line. We found another way to score tonight.
But Illinois has lost so many heartbreakers. They lost to one point to Arizona State; three points at Oregon. They only lost by four points to Texas Tech, a Top 25 team in the country.
So this is a good Illinois basketball team that's going to beat a lot of people this year.
Are you ready for the Girl Scouts?
COACH BLUDER: We love Girl Scout Day, and I understand there's been a lot of pre sold tickets and it's white out. There's a lot of promotions going on. I think there's five dollar tickets.
So I think people are pretty excited to see Nebraska come into Carver Hawkeye Arena for the first time joining the Big Ten Conference and they are a Top 25 team. So we have an opportunity on Sunday and our crowd is getting behind us, and we really appreciate that.