NIU Women's Basketball Media Day Quotes
Nov. 3, 2009
NIU Head Women's Basketball Coach Carol Owens
On the team's lone true senior, Kylie York...
"Kylie, I can't believe that she is a senior. She has done a great job. If you come to our games, she has as good of a shot than anybody. We are excited about what she brings. As we go into this year, I think about who is going to be our leaders. And every coach wants to identify that, but I think the good thing is that Kylie York and Mauvolyene Adams have taken that upon themselves. It's good to have those little coaches on the court, and when we are on the road. I am very thankful that they have come along.
On the junior class...
"I feel like all of our juniors are stepping up. It's good to see that they have gotten experience, and that is what we need. That's the core or our group. They are setting great examples for our freshman and sophomores. Our freshmen have been like sponges, they came in here and soaked up everything they can."
On the focus off the preseason...
"In practice, the main thing we have been working on is the communication. Communication is a big key to our success. Our chemistry is always important. In all the successful teams I have been a part of, chemistry is always important. They have to have that on the court. Our team has a real understanding of how that affects everything on the court."
On the condition of the team entering the year...
"This is the first year where we have gone in with everyone healthy into practice, and that makes a difference. We are in the best shape we have been in since I have been here. Practice we have been very, very competitive. We are hoping that that attitude will translate out onto the court."
On the schedule...
"As we talk about our schedule, we feel like we don't have to go very far to get good competition. Our schedule is challenging, but I feel like we are ready for that challenge. Once we hit January, we start our MAC play. We feel like it is a challenging schedule, but we look forward to playing these teams. When you play teams within the state, it draws a rivalry. I think our fans like that."
On what fans will see on the court...
"We want this to be a great experience. Our team will be fun to watch. Our emphasis the next week will be our defense. We want to continue to be a good rebounding team. On the offensive end, there is a difference between being a shooter and a scorer. This year we have a lot of people that want to score. We are excited about that."
Kylie York, Senior
On expectations and role for the season...
"This season I feel like being the only senior, obviously there is more weight on my shoulders to step up and be that leader. For me, just setting that example and being that leader and helping the younger teammates out."
On the team goals for the season...
"I think we could have a pretty good (non-conference) season, and then go into the MAC strong and get that championship. It's my last year, and I want to go out with a bang, and just give it all that we have. I think we have a good chance this year."
On being the team leader...
"My major role is just having the experience and helping the players out on the court. If someone has a question, I have been there and done that. On the court, being a leader by example."
On the variety of players this year...
"I think we have a lot more players this year with experience. Our juniors do have a big role this year, they are upper classman. Our freshman, they are coming along great. They are like sponges, taking everything in and they follow the lead. Everyone is stepping up and taking everything in."
On the opponents this season...
"I love the challenge, and playing all these teams in Illinois. It's a great challenge my senior year to play all these teams."
Courtney Shelton, Guard
On the team's overall appearance for this year...
"Our spirits are really high this year. We are just really excited about getting on the court and running the ball. We just have great expectations for each other this year."
On experienced gained from last year...
"It really was a learning experience last year for me just to watch, and see how everything went. Team-wise, I think we have matured a bit. We have been working really hard in practice."
Marke Freeman, Guard
On the mentality for this season...
"My mentality right now is to contribute in any way possible. Come out hard and strong, and be consistent in everything I do. Offensively and defensively play balanced at both ends of the court."
On improving in the game...
"I had a lot of opportunities to work with a lot of individuals for the better. Two of the main things I focused on were defense and my shooting because those were some of my weaker points, and I knew that these would be something to help the team out this year. I worked out daily and others that came home for the summer. I just worked out daily and took as many shots as I could. I was in the gym for hours."
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