March 9, 2014
Jim Flanery, Creighton head coach
Obviously we have a lot of respect for Butler given the first two games. We have a really hard time scoring the ball against them, and today was no different. What we did differently was we really tried to commit to pressing them so that at some point in the game the game would open up a little bit more and we would give ourselves an opportunity to maybe have better opportunities on offense. The grind-it-out nature of the first half contributed a lot to the result of the game. It helped that we just played them on Tuesday.
Obviously offensively that was not a pretty game. They did a good job on Marissa (Janning). They did a good job on McKenzie (Fujan). Sarah (Nelson)'s will to win today was really good based on how she played the other day against Butler on senior night. She was a little over-the-top hyped and just didn't perform at the level that she normally does, and I think her leadership I thought was huge in the first half and kind of set the tone with full-court defense, and Marissa was good. The other story of the game was MC McGrory, our freshman guard bailed us out and made big plays for us. Happy to be moving on and we know we'll have a challenge tomorrow against a really, really good St. John's team.
Marissa Janning, Creighton sophomore guard
(on not scoring until making two free throws with 8:11 to play in the game)
(on MC McGrory's shot at the end of the first half)
I think it gave us a lot of motivation going into halftime with that lead, especially on a buzzer-beater. For MC, I think it gives her a lot of confidence. As teammates we were there to build her up even more and get her head big so she had confidence going into the second half, and she came in just ready to go and ready to win. She has that will to win. She's a big, strong kid and she was really good for us on defense. She put a lot of ball pressure on, and then offensively she brought a lot that I couldn't do and McKenzie couldn't do today, so it was great for her to step up.
Just get some extra shots up, kind of thing. They're easy shots, so nothing else was really falling and I really didn't get any shot opportunities it was great to get some wide-open ones that were free basically, so just to get me going a little bit. It was nice, and we went on a spurt where we couldn't miss a shot, and that was just great. We kept getting to the rim, and I think even teammates hitting other shots makes my motivation and my confidence greater and you just get on a run as a team.
Beth Couture, Butler head coach
You have to give Creighton a lot of credit; you know going into it it's tough to beat a team three times, but I thought they played really well. Their bench played a big factor in this game, with his kids hitting a couple of big threes. I'm really proud of my team, and proud of my seniors.
We really played the whole first half without Daress [McClung], and for her to still come in and have 25 points was big. She wanted to will us to the win, but at the end of the day we didn't get that.
First year in the BIG EAST, I thought we did a really good job, and we'll continue to work hard.
What was your plan in stopping Creighton's Marissa Janning?
We've done a really good job against her three times, but that was Mandy McDivitt. She's our defensive stopper; she'd never be Defensive Player of the Year because she doesn't have the steals and all that, but for four years now she's played other teams' best players, and has just given them trouble. We can't take any credit. She's the kind of kid that dreams at night about stopping someone from getting to their average. She's kept us in a lot of games by stopping their best player, and we're going to miss her.
Thoughts on the first year in the BIG EAST?
I feel really good about being in the BIG EAST; I think we've got a really good basketball league, with a lot of good coaches. It's really different than a lot of leagues I've been in, because you don't really have a style of play. Everyone plays really differently, so every night you have to prepare in a different way.
Daress McClung, Butler senior guard/forward
How were you able to put up 25 points with such a big performance in the second half?
I just feel like a lot of my teammates made a lot of openings for me at that point. I think Creighton's a good team and they play great defense, not to take that away from them. I feel like the flow of the game went well, I just wish it would have been a little bit more.