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Jan. 29, 2006

Recap | Final Stats | Notes | Photo Gallery

USC Head Coach Susan Walvius

Opening Statement:

“Our team did a good job today. We took away Arkansas’ strengths, and it was a really solid all-around defensive effort. Melanie Johnson came in and really sparked our offense. Lea Fabbri obviously, 5-for-5 today, did a great job running the team. The good thing about our basketball team is that you can have a different person step up. It was an all-around team effort.”

Regarding Team Strength:
“We’ve got a lot of parity on this team. You’ve heard me say it before, but the strength of our team is the depth of our team. Somebody steps up a different night. It’s so important that everyone shows up because we’re playing eight people 20 minutes a game. When so many people know they’re going to play, they buy into the system and the opportunity to play well.

Regarding Schedule Strength:
“We had a very tough stretch to open the SEC schedule, opening with Tennessee, LSU, Vanderbilt, and Georgia. We have only two losses to non-Top 20 teams, and one was to a Kentucky team that beat Tennessee. They know you don’t have to win every game in the SEC to put yourself in position for the NCAA tournament.”

Regarding Team Goals:
“If you can finish in the top half of the SEC, you’re battle tested because you’ve played against top teams. If you can do that, you’re in good position to do well in the tournament and chances are you’ll go far.”

“The Minnesota win certainly helped us. Not having blemishes on our schedule also helps. We’ve done well. If you finish .500 in the league, you can get in (the NCAA Tournament) with our win over Minnesota.”

USC Junior Guard Lea Fabbri

“Today they let me drive to the hole a lot. I drove to the hole four times. They did a good job going after our shooters, but that left the lane open.”

“Our chemistry is always there. We get along together very well, and we play together very well. Today was a good game, and we’re happy to get the win.”

USC Junior Forward Melanie Johnson

“Different players step up on different nights. Tonight was my night to step up against a good team. I just had to take what the defense gave me.”

“We’ve played some top teams. This win was really good. It was one that we really needed. I feel like we can win some more if we continue to play like we played tonight.”

Arkansas Head Coach Susie Gardner

“(South Carolina’s) very athletic. They have great penetrators and we knew that. Our post people did a pretty good job with the height (disadvantage). Our guards let us down a little with cuts and dribble penetration.”

“At the three minute mark, we said `This is where we’d like to be. We’ve done that before and we’ve won those games.’ I felt comfortable, but we made mistakes that we hadn’t made before. It didn’t feel like we were in the flow we’ve been in this season. For whatever reason, we didn’t step up to the challenge.”

“South Carolina is a very good team. They’re going to win a few games in February. They have good players.”