Q. Can you talk a little bit about what it's like to play in the tournament and what it's like to be a part of this milestone?
PALLAS KUNAIYI-AKPANAH: I think the Big Ten conference is one of the best conferences in the NCAA. I think all the teams here work hard. Everybody really cares about the players and the athletes, and every program is invested in their teams. So I really enjoy playing with the Big Ten, and happy 25th anniversary.
Q. Talk about being able to survive and advance; you did that today. What are your thoughts?
COACH MCKEOWN: You know, we've got a little bittersweet taste because I thought we were in complete control of the game. Third quarter, you know, really into the fourth quarter, just couldn't make plays when we needed to. They turned us over, got some easy buckets, and then they made touch-outs, too, and-ones.
But I loved how we kept our poise to finish it. At this time of the year that's all that matters. We get to play tomorrow, and we'll address some of the things we struggled with and get ready to play Iowa.
Q. What do you think was the difference, especially in that fourth quarter with the teams kind of making that big --
COACH TSIPIS: Well, we felt when you're down 17, when they scored towards the end of the third quarter, that we had to do something to lengthen the game out. The press was good to us. It made us play at a faster pace. They got a little bit tentative in it. We were able to score off some turnovers, and it just ratcheted, I thought, even in our half-court offense, our activity level.
We did give up a couple baskets in it, but again, I thought they were playing with the proverbial playing not to lose, and we were able to take advantage of that. And again, to get to the line with that attacking mentality, to be able to stop the clock, we had to be, because it came down to a one-possession game with 18 seconds left, and I thought we obviously -- Cayla made a great play, just didn't go that way for us, and it ended up being the offensive foul.
But I'm just proud of that effort. Just can't let it get to that point and have to fight back, especially against a team that is so well-coached that's going to be able to try to shorten the game on us.
Q. Shooting was a little bit of an issue. Do you think that was just partly the foul trouble, Marsha getting in a little bit of foul trouble early?
COACH TSIPIS: I thought in the first half, we got some good looks, and whether that be nerves of being the first Big Ten game, but some shots that I think we work on every day, I didn't think we were taking shots that we don't necessarily practice, but if you miss two or three or four to start the game, I thought we did a good job of closing the gap at the end of the first quarter.
But then we were playing some lineups and trying to manage with Abby having two and Marsha having two, and they did a good job, I thought, in the triangle-and-two taking away our top two scorers we had on the floor, kind of forcing us to get to options three, four and five.
Q. You kept Pallas down. You did a nice job of keeping her down, and she got in foul trouble, but Pulliam seemed to be the one --
COACH TSIPIS: Yeah, she had a great first half, and she scored every single way possible. She scored against the man, scored against the zone, scored off an out-of-bounds play. Even when we went to the junk defense, we let her touch it, and if you let her touch it, she's got a chance to score it. Transition, as well; I thought we had a better sense of urgency in the second half.
But again, for them, they had another player step up in Abi Scheid, scored seven straight to start the second half, and you can't -- if you take one person down, you've got to do it the same way and be able to take everybody and limit them to one or two baskets.
Q. One last one on just the seniors and especially what Cayla and Kendall have meant to this program this year.
COACH TSIPIS: Yeah, I mean, obviously it would have been nice to have Kendall on the floor just from a depth standpoint. I thought with Cayla, you hope with a senior, again, who didn't have her best game at Senior Day at Rutgers, goes down with such fight, and I thought she did that today, and not just because she went straight to the rim. She had to fight through different defenses and continued, and I thought made a lot of the right decisions, played aggressively.
And again, great effort and set a great example, I think, not only tonight but in her two years here of the progression you can have as a player.