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Jan. 7, 2010

Recap | Box Score

On the low crowd turnout – just 1,462 fans – because of severe weather conditions
“It was pretty odd. It’s usually packed in here. It’s always a joy coming down here because a lot of people come here and support Tennessee’s program and at the same time they have an appreciation for women’s basketball. Mother Nature played its own part in the game, but the people that came out were faithful. I’m glad they got a chance to see what I thought was one of our better games.”

On subbing out four and sometimes five players at a time
“We got tired. I guess they tired us out. We wanted to make our speed a part of the game. We knew that if we kept it a half-court game, their height advantage would come into play a lot more. We wanted to find easier ways to score. Once the game settled down (we thought) maybe we could tire them out a little bit. I thought we should just bring in some fresh legs and give us a different look. The players I brought in were defensive-minded. They like to get after it. Offensively, they weren’t the five we’d like to have on the floor but they can sometimes make things happen and change the complexion of the game.”

On the matchup of centers Kelsey Bone, of South Carolina, and Kelley Cain, of Tennessee
“I know (UT sophomore) Kelley (Cain) knows just by having a year under her belt playing in the SEC that it’s different. Her playing in the league this year, Kelsey (Bone) is going to make her a lot better as a sophomore – better than she was today. She’s just got to take her hits this year. We’ve just got to figure out a way to put all that talent to work.”

On playing Tennessee in Knoxville before hosting the Lady Vols in Columbia
“It is helpful. They are who they are. They’re big, they’re skilled. They have players they can bring off the bench. When Bjorklund shoots the ball like she shot the ball, they’re going to win a lot of basketball games whether you’ve seen them before or not.”

On South Carolina’s improvement from last season to this season
“We are more talented than we were last year. We’re less experienced, but we’re more talented. When we add some experience to the talent we have, we will start making these games a lot closer than what they are. It did feel good. It felt better than how we’ve been playing. When you can play against one of the top teams in the SEC (like we did tonight) – if you can bottle it up and bring that against other teams, we should win a lot more basketball games than lose.”

On the physicality of the Southeastern Conference
“It means a whole lot. The SEC is known for its physicality. It was a big part of my decision to come play in the SEC. It’s expected, it’s just a matter of me being able to handle the physical nature.”

On how this game will prepare South Carolina for when Tennessee travels to Columbia later this season
“It gives us a big advantage to come here first and then be able to tackle them on our home floor. We will be able to watch film and see where we messed up. Hopefully, the outcome will be different.”