November 23, 2002

Post Match Quotes

Nov. 23, 2002

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Nebraska Quotes

Head Coach Jon Walker
On his formation
"There's a difference between going into the game and deciding you're going to sit in your own half and play with five in the back... we didn't do that. We played 4-3-3, we just asked our wide forwards to retreat sometimes and our mids to push up. We tried to play as attacking as we could. Once we were down a goal late, we pushed up and ended up with four up front. We did the thing that we thought would get us back in the game."

On Own Goal
"I'd have to look at it on tape. The ball just kind of squirted through there, so I'm not really sure what happened."

On the Set Plays
"We scored on a set play, just like they did. That's what it comes down to at this level of the tournament. It's just one individual play, and often it's a set play. And I'm sure there's certainly no shortage of practice time for both teams dedicated to this. Sometimes the execution is just good and that's the way it goes."

On Santa Clara
"I think the thing they do best is pass. They have excellent technique and they have two playmakers in the middle of it in (Veronica) Zepeda and (Aly) Wagner. I think one thing I'd say, Jerry's done a better job in getting prepared for the physical parts of the game. I think you saw that last year at the final four, and again today. They're an excellent team. It certainly wouldn't surprise to take another run at the College Cup."

Player Christine Latham
On her goal
"I think she did stop, had a bad touch on the ball. It was bouncing and I think she meant to clear it but it bounced off her shin. I was just hoping to pressure her, but it worked to my advantage. I touched it by her and the goalkeeper came out and I touched around her to score."

Santa Clara Quotes

Head Coach Jerry Smith
Opening Statement
"I'm very proud of my team today. Once again, it was an example of being pushed to the limit, having your back against the wall, and then responding in a positive way. Last Sunday, we were down 1-0 with 30 minutes to play and we had a tremendous effort; kept our composure, never panicked, did all the right things and we once again did that today.

"I have to give Nebraska a lot of credit. They are a very tough team, they are very obvious about the things they want to do in their game and they are very good at it. They are a type of team, that seven years in a row, they've been to the Sweet 16, so they're using to being here, used to playing teams like Santa Clara and used to playing them well. They are as tough a team physically as we've seen all season long. Christine Latham up front is as good a forward as I think in the country. I thought she scored a great opportunistic goal against us today.

On Devvyn Hawkins
"With stitches in her head, she headed a goal in for the winner. She couldn't head the ball all week and last night we were asking the doctors if she could receive another dose of local anesthetic."

On Chardonnay Poole
"Great effort by Chardy after what she'll say is a mistake in the first half to allow goal. In those situations, most players can't recover. You make a blunder, an error, cost the team a goal--might cost the team a win--and you think about that... but good players become great players when they can put that out of their head and focus on how they can make a positive difference and it couldn't have been more appropriate for Chardonnay to score the second goal of the game. Just a fantastic play. Again, great job by her to put things tog ether."

On Hawkins being injured on other side of field during Nebraska's first goal
"I think we let down a little bit. What often times happens when a player goes down, the other team puts the ball out of bounds and then you throw it back in to their team and you address the injured player. Devvyn was injured and maybe some players on our team let down, thinking Nebraska was going to kick the ball out and she didn't."

On Physical nature of the game
"You don't get to the end of the season without a bunch of bumps and bruises and you don't get out of a game with Nebraska without the same. That's been the way they've played for a long time. We've slowly but surely been putting an end to that myth that teams can play rough against us. I think we did that again today.

On Shot Percentage
"The game was 3-2 and it's a tough, tight, hard-fought game, but I think had we been a little bit more composed in our finishing, we could have won the game by two or three goals. Not taking anything away from Nebraska, but we had some very easy chances. There were several times where we rushed shots when we had more time than we thought we did and had we been more composed we could have scored four or five goals today."

On Tight Games
"I'll never hold my team back from being successful, but I think it's a good, healthy, normal thing to make mistakes, to have to come from behind, to have things tight at the end of the game. They are going to happen to everybody and I don't have a concern that is limiting our team from being successful. There's only one group of people that can prevent us from winning the championship, and that is ourselves."

Player Devvyn Hawkins
On her head
"It's hurting a little bit. Last time I went into the game, it was numb. Today, I played without any meds. It hurt a little bit, but my adrenaline got me through it. Hopefully, the stitches will come out Tuesday."

Player Chardonnay Poole
On her goal
"I couldn't have asked for a better ball from Aly. We've been practicing that all week. Their keeper is really good in the air, so we've been practicing driving the ball low. Aly placed it perfectly; all I had to do was touch it in. I'd been saving it. I knew I had to get once sooner or later."

On the first Nebraska goal
"It was off a punt, and one of our defenders went out to challenge the ball, and we're supposed to drop back. I made the mistake of taking too many touches in the back and she is a great forward and pressured me. She made a great goal off of my mistake."