November 30, 2002

Post Match Quotes

Nov. 30, 2002

Recap| Box Score

Santa Clara

Head Coach Jerry Smith
Opening Statement
"I'd like to congratulate Michigan on a great year and a great match today. Like our last match against Nebraska, they gave us a very tough match, but I'm very proud of my team. We did a lot of things right today. We reached another one of our goals for the season, to reach the College Cup. We feel like we're peaking at the right time of year. We've certainly come a long way from the beginning of the season when we lost to Stanford 3-0 in our opening match. There's a lot to be said for peaking at the right time and our team is doing that.

On Veronica Zepeda
"Veronica is one of the cleverest dribblers in college soccer. If teams have never played against dribblers like her or Aly, they're very surprised. One of things we talked about was that Michigan had good size in their back four and we need to try and keep the ball on the ground. We felt although our players were a little smaller, we were a little quicker and more agile. I though Veronica's goal was a perfect example of quickness, cleverness, and overcoming bigger, stronger players."

On Michigan's goal
"They kept the game tight the whole time and after we scored our third goal, we might have relaxed a little bit and they pumped that one in on us. And that can happen anytime."

On North Carolina
"We've had a lot of great matches against North Carolina in our history. We've been fortunate to win our last two matches against them. North Carolina is still the program to beat. They're not the number one seed, but everybody knows they're the team to beat."

Senior Midfielder Aly Wagner
On the Broncos scoring twice in just over two minutes
"One thing we focus on is that five-minute period after a goal is scored, to really focus on keeping the ball in your half and taking advantage and capitalizing on opportunities.

On returning to the College Cup
"I'm really excited. Like coach said, that was our goal and we achieved it. The College Cup is an amazing event and it's something you want to go out in-one way or another-as a senior. I'm looking forward to it and I think our team is ready for the challenge. We've proven that we're pretty strong mentally, and physically as well."

Senior Midfielder Devvyn Hawkins
On her goal
"It was a perfect hit ball, and I just put my head on it and redirected the ball.

Junior Midfielder Veronica Zepeda
On her goal
"Last week, I had a couple of shots outside the box and we wanted to minimize that this week. This week in practice we focused on taking the extra touch before taking the shot. That's what I did. I was actually about to shoot the ball, and through my head, it kept running 'don't take a shot yet,' so I tried to get a little bit closer, and it worked."

Michigan

Head Coach Debbie Rademacher
On the game
"They were a good team and I thought we really fought until the end. They moved their defenders forward which forced our forwards to move up with them and then when you're coming back and trying to hold the ball against their defense with only one forward that makes it tough. I think that was the key for them."

On playing against Santa Clara's three forward line up
"We don't play a three-front defense typically, but we knew that we had to mark their three center midfielders. So we gave our outside midfielders the responsibility having to play both ends of the field. That's really the only way we could have done it.

On Abby Crumpton's injury in the first half
"Well, she sprained her ankle and we wanted to test her out at the beginning of the second half to see what she could give, and she really couldn't give anything."

On taking a step forward as a program
"We definitely did. We started off really strong and had a few bumps along the way, but I think that really helped us prepare for the tournament. We have a very big senior class, a lot of experience there, and I think that is what helped us through the first three rounds."

On next season
"We have a strong class coming in and a strong supporting cast. This is the best experience the underclassmen have had. Like I've said, we've lost big senior classes before and the rest of the team has stepped it up; they've been mentored. Every team goes in a cycle, we'll certainly have a different team next year than the one this year, but they'll find their identity but they've certainly learned from a great group."

On Santa Clara
"They always play the same style. They want to play an attractive, possession-style of soccer and they do that year after year. Certainly they have a lot of experience whether they have seniors or not. They're a pretty similar team to the team they had last year in the championship."

Senior Carly Williamson
On Santa Clara's strengths
"Their vision was incredible. Their ability to pass and hold onto the ball was really strong. They were really able to exploit the width of the field and use their playmaking ability. Aly Wagner is a great player, but their whole team was tough today. They were ball-winners and could really hold onto the ball after winning it."

Senior Andrea Kayal
On Santa Clara's two quick goals
"Obviously when a team scores against you, you want to come back right away with intensity. I don't think that we were lacking it, however I think that scoring made them more focused on getting another one and really got them going."