Katie Gearlds Show for Monday 11/29/2021 Notes

DocRon

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Aug 15, 2001
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Since WBB gets so little coverage, I am giving a summary of Coach Gearlds’ Monday Show. Unlike previously, this will not be word for word but more a highlight of some of the main points.

Katie Gearlds Show
Nov. 29, 2021
Tim Newton (TN) and Katie Gearlds (KG) with guest Brooke Moore (BM)

TN: You have to be pleased to be 5-2

KG: Yes a lot of people looked at our schedule and didn’t think we’ed be 5-2 at this point.
  • Home game we lost against Dayton was not “ideal” but if we had not lost that we would not have done as well in Florida.
  • We have a young BB team. The improvement we showed from the Dayton game forward was encouraging.
TN: The AP poll came out today and you got one vote. I don’t think anyone would have expected that.

KG: They have been out in the community and are coming together.
  • How they get along off the court translates into how they play on it.
  • We understand nobody expects much of us so we’ll just keep playing with a chip on our shoulder.
TN: About the games - On Nov. 16 at Illinois State you went on the road and beat them 76-64. Ellis had 20 pts, Layden had 18 pts and Kyle 14 pts. Team shot 53% from the field and 47% (9/19) from 3PT. If you shoot on the road like that, you have a good chance to win.

KG: Yes, we have to make shots.
  • Obviously we try to throw the ball inside to Shaya
  • Rickie had a great two games for us in Florida as well as at Illinois State.
  • But we’re going to shoot the ball a lot from outside - some days they’ll go in and some days they will not.
TN: At Illinois State you really were in control most of the night. They took a brief lead just once. We’ve seen that BB is a game of runs but your team has been able to withstand those runs (for the most part.)

KG: We talk to the team often about that - that BB is a game of runs.
  • We just need to make sure our runs are longer and the last one.
TN: The next game was a home game against Dayton that you lost 62-78. You were in that game down only 2 at the half but the 13-23 3Q really spelled the difference.

KG: Yeah, we always want to be in that position at halftime
  • For the most part we really executed our game plan in the first half
  • But in the 3Q we were 3/13 & then 7/14 from FT line.
  • Listening to Coach “Paint” show before I came on he says “Sometimes that just happens.” When that happens we’ve got to be able to dig down deeper on D.
  • Dayton handed it to us. They didn’t have as many off rebs the 2nd half but they capitalized on every single one in the 2nd half.
  • But as I said, what we learned from that loss helped us play so much better last weekend.
TN: That Dayton team is favored to win the Atlantic Ten and I think would be a very competitive team in the Big Ten.

KG: Oh absolutely. They had 3 5th year seniors, one other senior and a sophomore. They have mostly played with each other for two years.
  • But we’re still trying to figure things out.
  • I love my team - how hard they play for me right now.
  • They’re fun to be around right now.
TN; One week ago you had a game with just a 48 hrs turnaround. That’s a little unusual when you’re not playing a tournament.

KG: Yeah it was a good experience for us really - like for when we get the the Big Ten Tournament.
  • We played Sat night and had a little walk-thru Sunday but we got after it a little as we didn’t really want to waste a day.
  • On Monday we won (Marshall 70-60) - it wasn’t pretty but we gutted it out.
  • Wins don’t have to be pretty right now, they just need to end up with a W.
TN: And you hit your FT’s in that game, 21/26.

TN: So you get on the road at the St. Pete’s Showcase and I think everybody looked at that and said “Wow, you’re going to have to play a couple of Top 25 teams in three days. You started on the road against West Virginia on Thanksgiving. They jump off to an 8 pt lead in the first 4 mins. For the rest of the 36 mins it was dead even but you could never make up those first 8 points.

KG: I don’t know how many fans saw the game but honestly we had some really good looks in those first few mins. We missed two layups & Madison air-balled a 3PT in the corner. Maybe it was nerves or inexperience but those were really good looks that didn’t go down.
  • We battled - stuck with the game plan and executed it really well.
  • It was a 4 pt game with about 4 minds to go. We trapped them and got a steal but then we lost it on a turnover.
  • They scored and that kinda took the air out of it.
  • We had ourselves in a position to win after a tough start and battled.
  • WV rebounded well - were a good physical BB team.
  • After the game I told them I wish I had done a few things differently to help them win the game.
  • It will help me learn and grow as a coach.
TN: So once again you had two games in even less than 48 hrs because your next game against Florida State was at 11AM on Saturday. It had to be one of the more bizarre games in the history of WBB. You go up 26-10 in the 1stQ and then they scored the next 27 pts. You had good looks but were 0/13 in the 2ndQ. What was it like in the locker room at half?

KG: I think we were “a little tight” at halftime like “Wow, what just happened.
  • With a couple of mins left in the 2Q I sat back and said “Oh my God, we are not going to score this quarter.”
  • We were getting looks and we only had 3 TOs.
  • The best thing was it was still only a 7 pt game.
  • In the first Q we jumped out and had a lot of energy. In the 2Q we did the same thing and nothing went down.
  • At halftime I got on Madison and Shaya a little bit and they came out and responded in the second half beautifully.
TN: FSU scored the first 4 pts in the 3rdQ so you’re down 11 now but thas most impressive to me - that you could get it down to a manageable lead by the end of the 3rdQ and then in the 4thQ everybody hit shots. Hardin had six 3PT in the game.

KG: Yeah, Hardin had some big shots. But if you didn’t watch the game you have no idea what that kid did. She was guarding a 6’4” post and battled her butt off.
  • On the perimeter we did a really good job of trying to take away some of the things FSU did.
  • They wanted to play in the high/low and we were deceptive guarding it.
  • They only had 4 offensive rebs and we only turned it over 10 times.
  • Shaya was something really, really special in the second half.
  • Brooke hit a huge 3PT to tie the game going into the 4thQ.
  • It was good to see Madison “back.” Good to see her make some shots.
  • Whether the players were on the court or on the bench, they were locked-in.
  • It was a really fun game to be a part of.
TN: I was listening to Brian Jennings broadcast the game as I was driving in to the Bucket game, You were up by one with less than a minute to play and you were passing in the ball. I wondered which direction you would go - you got the ball in to Ra Shaya and she made a great baseline spin for a short baseline J that really sealed the game for you.

KG: Yeah, that was kind of the 2nd option there. We wanted to give Madison a look at it but they took it away from us. But our group stayed with what we wanted them to do and Brooke threw it in to Shay and she made a great drop step and finished it.
  • Then we got a stop on the other end and made two FTs and we were able to ice the game down the stretch.
TN: I want to bring up Rickie Woltman. You have talked a little bit about her before but she is really giving you some quality time right now off the bench,

KG: Yes, she’s doing exactly what we need her to do and more on top of it.
  • We want to be sure we put her in a position to be successful. We told her to defend your butt off, rebound your butt off and she’s doing that.
  • But now she’s getting more and more confident on the court so that we’re throwing her her the ball and she’s wanting it.
  • She had a huge bucket down the stretch. Missed the layup, got the off rebound, powered it up against FSU’s big in a crucial moment for us.
  • To have both Shaya and Rickie inside not just for Rickie to get def rebounds but as a post presence - I can’t say enough about how important that is for us.
  • She works her butt every day in practice for us.
  • I feel the longer the season goes on the more we are going to see of Rickie.
TN: You also talked about Jeanae Terry when you brought her in from Illinois and she’s done so many things for you - played so many different positions. That’s really important as you go through the rest of the season.

KG: Yeah, she had 10 assists and only one TO against FSU.
  • We’ve put the ball in her hands a little bit more in the last two games especially in transition and half-court.
  • We moved Abbey off the ball a little bit worrying that the pressure of the game could affect Abbey at her size.
  • She had made that change beautifully.
  • Walking into practice today she asked “Do you want me to take some reps at the point?” and I told her “I want you to get a lot of reps at the point today,” (Laughs)
  • Her energy is so contagious. She just wants to win BB games.
  • She is willing to do whatever it takes for her team to win games.
TN: We’ve talked about Cassidy Hardin who was named to the All Tournament” team down there - I think she is showing she can be more than a 3PT shooter. You mentioned her guarding a 6;4” post player.

KG: Going into the season I don’t know how many fans thought she would make an All Tournament team somewhere. She is just playing well right now.
  • The only bad shot she takes are the ones she doesn’t take.
  • She spaces the floor for us and understands the game of BB.
  • Defensively she will do anything. She will take a charge for us, she’ll be the one to do help side for us. It doesn’t matter if she is guarding the perimeter or a 6”4” or 6’5” post player.
TN: I have a feeling she will lead the team in charges taken this year.

KG: Yep, you see her on the floor a lot.
___________________

TN: I wanted to add some more data to a few of our former Boilers playing professionally.
Adreona Keyes (2014-2018) - In her last game in Romania she had 19 pts, 10 rebs and 3 blocks. She is averaging 21 PPG for her team which is 6-0 this season.
KK Houser (2009-2014) - Playing in Poland had another huge game with 23 pts and 6 assists. Her team is 4-3 and is averaging almost 16 pts and 4 assists a game.
Sam Ostarello (2009-2013) - Who by the way is now a naturalized Italian citizen now, is playing In Italy. She had 7 pts in her last game which is now 5-2.
Aya Traore (2003-2006) is playing in Spain and in her last game had 12 pts and 5 rebs. Her team right now is 6-2 and she is averaging more than 13 PPG and almost 6 RBG.
___________________

TN: We are joined by Brooke Moore.Her mom is watching on Facebook. Welcome. What has the season been like - it must be fun to be at 5-2 and have a win over a top 25 team.

BM: Yeah, we’ve been having a lot of fun so far. Just learning every day and listening to Coach Katie and all our coaches.

TN: Coach Gearlds told me the weather was great in Florida. How hard was it to get off the plane back here on Sunday?

BM: Oh, it’s tough - it’s tough. I’m from the South.
  • We know the snow is really fun sometimes but…
  • Last year was my first time being in snow. It’s pretty but too cold.
TN: I’m going to talk about your HS career in Atlanta. You were the 4A player of the year and lead your team to a state championship. When did you start playing BB?

BM: Around 7 or 8. I was actually was first in Florida and then we moved to Atlanta when I was 7yo.

TN: When did you realize you had the ability to get a scholarship?

BM: I got my first offer in the 7th grade. I got moved to the top teams and when coaches came to look at them they saw me too.

TN: You decided to go to Auburn and played two seasons there and decided to come to Purdue. What made you decide that?

BM: Well, the Big Ten is a very good conference. I always wanted to play in a good conference.
  • I did a lot of research on Purdue. I knew Dominique Oden and talked to her and all the great things she had to say.
  • I couldn’t visit because of COVID.
  • I understood how it was a BB school and how well the fans support every team.
TN: The locker room after FSU had to be exciting. We talked about the end of the game and there were double technical fouls - two on Purdue (Kyle and Terry) each team. You were on the floor and I heard you pulled one of your teammates away from the scrum.

BM: Yeah, I had to pull Shaya away. She’s the type of player who is real passionate. She’s like the “mom” of the team. She’s going to be there for everybody and I felt it was my duty to grab her and get her out of that situation.

TN: Let’s talk about the coaching change. Coach Gearlds was going to be the assistant coach but then suddenly was named head coach. What was that like? (And I will remind you she is sitting just off stage.) (Laughs)

BM: Oh she is a very cool coach. I’ve learned a lot from her. Honestly I would not want to play for any other coach.
  • We’re having fun and honestly that’s the biggest thing.
  • We smile and do it all.
  • There are days that Katie comes in and says “I know your tired but let’s just do it.”
  • That’s the biggest thing - to know the coach and coaching staff have our back. And that want to see us win.
  • This last win we were so happy. Everybody was smiling, everyone was cheering & happy.
  • We dumped Coach Katie with water.
  • It was a beautiful moment and we have moments like that in practice too.
TN: That seems to be the comments of people who are watching the team - they say the team looks like they are having fun. It is a long season and we are only at the end of November. You need to have fun.

BM: Coach Katie makes sure we do. She writes on the board, the last thing before evert game “Have FUN.” “Play together and Have FUN.”
  • That’s the key to our being successful so far and that will be the key to us being successful down the road.
TN: What do you see as your role on this team for it to be successful and for you to be successful?

BM: The number one thing is energy. I think a lot of people feed off me for energy. I am always wanting to joke around. I think that’s what the team needs sometimes. But it’s about energy.
  • Secondly on offense and defense I’m an upper class-man so whatever I need to do to get the team a win that is what I will do.
  • Obviously my role has changed from last year. But I trust Coach Katie - we all trust Coach Katie.
  • I would never question her and what she has for our game-plan.
  • I just try to be ME everyday and it’s working so far.
TN: Let’s talk about the school aspect of it. We have two more weeks of class and then the finals. You have all that plus a lot of BB. How do you balance that?

BM: Well we rely on our tutors and counselors. But it’s really tough.
  • When we were in Florida, we didn’t “have work” but we had work.
  • We weren’t in school but we had a lot of work to get done.
  • We might want to hand out on the beach but you may have to type up this paper.
  • You just need to remember that you have assignments coming due.
TN: Life after basketball - you’re hoping to play for a long time. But what will happen when you have to hang it up?

BM: I would love to coach. And then after that or during that go into Roller skate (or real estate??). It’s really popular around Atlanta.
___________________

TN: We had Brooke Moore talking about her role and she said it was to provide energy. What do you see that you need from her?

KG: Exactly what she has been giving us.
  • We’re starting to magnify her a little bit more.
  • I think she is becoming more comfortable doing what we have asked her to do.
  • I told her coming in that we would bring you in off the bench but “pull the reins off her a little bit.”
  • We talk about we want to get Madison and Shaya going early and we want to get Hardin going in transition. So when she is in the starting lineup she doesn’t get to be Brooke.
  • So bringing her in off the bench allows her to be Brooke.
  • She is really starting to understand that if the ball “pops” and moves side-to-side then it is going to get back to me.
  • She got it going against West Virginia and then not only did she hit clutch shots against Florida State but she made clutch defensive plays for us.
TN: So Georgian Tech is coming up Wednesday night. Nell Fortner is their head coach. She was here in 1996-1997 and then left to Coach the Olympic team. She led Purdue to an improbable BIg Ten title and almost an upset of the top seed (Old Dominion) in the NCAA tournament.
  • They’ve really gone international. of their 11 players are from overseas so maybe we’ll see a little different style from them.
KG: Yeah, but BB is BB. Watching them and us you’ll see a lot of similarities in the way they play and the way we try to play.
  • They’re big inside and they have an international point guard.
  • They have a real athlete on the wing and a lot of shooters to go around.
  • Obviously we will have our hands full. We’ve got to do a good job on the boards and take care of the basketball.
  • If we can do that we will give ourselves a good chance to win.
TN: Georgia Tech is just outside the Top 25 ranking. They were in the Top 25 but then lost one game.
  • Then you have to Big Ten coming in on Sunday with #18 Ohio State.
  • They are unbeaten but have not played a great schedule.
  • Jacy Sheldon leads them in scoring (19 ppg, 47% from the 3PT).
  • Taylor Miksell who is now on her 3rd college BB team - started at Maryland (for 2 years), then to Oregon (for 1 year) and now to Ohio State - she’s only shooting 59% from 3PT range.
KG: Obviously not someone we can leave open.
  • RIght now I just haven’t dug into Ohio State - just focusing in on Georgia Tech.
  • It will be a huge opportunity for our BB team.
  • They were always tough when I was here.
TN: How do you feel about playing two Big Ten games in early December?

KG: It might be different for our team but actually this was how it was set up at Marion. We would play 3 or 4 league games and then go back to non-conference games.
  • A basketball game is a basketball game. They are all important.
  • There is none more important than the next one.
TN: You are trying to build your team up and get some momentum built up. What is it like playing during prep for finals and the holidays?

KG: The good thing for us is we have two weeks of Wed/Sun games and then we have a week off. That’s finals week.
  • We’ll work around their finals schedules.
  • We’ll give them some time off - they’ve played a lot of games.
  • They are student-athletes. We need to make sure that we allow them an opportunity to finish the semester strong.
TN: Are you settling in on your rotation?

KG: I think we have a decent understanding but we are still filling things out.
  • I still want Jayla to be a part of the rotation. She got really sick with allergies when we were down in Florida. Allergies really kicked her butt so she did not play much against FSU.
  • Right now my problem is a little bit different than Coach Paint. His team is phenomenal and we’re just trying to figure it out.
  • We’ve only been together for 2 1/2 months.
TN: But the good thing is you are seeing Rickie Woltman stepping up. You are seeing Cass guarding people she has no business guarding but she is doing it well. Whatever you are selling they seem to be buying.

KG: It’s a lot of belief in them and making sure they feel comfortable.
  • We need to make sure we as a staff don’t put them in a position to fail.
  • I always tell my team - “I’m not going to ask you to do something that I think you are unable to do.” “I am not going to ask you to do something for our team that is going to make you look silly.”
  • We want each of them to be successful. They’ve really bought into that.
TN: More and more people come up to me wanting to talk about this team and I think that is a testament to what you and your staff have done here - not only this month but through out the entire summer.

TN: Good luck and we will see you next week.
 
Last edited:

DocRon

All-American
Gold Member
Aug 15, 2001
7,719
2,006
113
Sheridan , Michigan
Since WBB gets so little coverage, I am giving a summary of Coach Gearlds’ Monday Show. Unlike previously, this will not be word for word but more a highlight of some of the main points.

Katie Gearlds Show
Nov. 29, 2021
Tim Newton (TN) and Katie Gearlds (KG) with guest Brooke Moore (BM)

TN: You have to be pleased to be 5-2

KG: Yes a lot of people looked at our schedule and didn’t think we’ed be 5-2 at this point.
  • Home game we lost against Dayton was not “ideal” but if we had not lost that we would not have done as well in Florida.
  • We have a young BB team. The improvement we showed from the Dayton game forward was encouraging.
TN: The AP poll came out today and you got one vote. I don’t think anyone would have expected that.

KG: They have been out in the community and are coming together.
  • How they get along off the court translates into how they play on it.
  • We understand nobody expects much of us so we’ll just keep playing with a chip on our shoulder.
TN: About the games - On Nov. 16 at Illinois State you went on the road and beat them 76-64. Ellis had 20 pts, Layden had 18 pts and Kyle 14 pts. Team shot 53% from the field and 47% (9/19) from 3PT. If you shoot on the road like that, you have a good chance to win.

KG: Yes, we have to make shots.
  • Obviously we try to throw the ball inside to Shaya
  • Rickie had a great two games for us in Florida as well as at Illinois State.
  • But we’re going to shoot the ball a lot from outside - some days they’ll go in and some days they will not.
TN: At Illinois State you really were in control most of the night. They took a brief lead just once. We’ve seen that BB is a game of runs but your team has been able to withstand those runs (for the most part.)

KG: We talk to the team often about that - that BB is a game of runs.
  • We just need to make sure our runs are longer and the last one.
TN: The next game was a home game against Dayton that you lost 62-78. You were in that game down only 2 at the half but the 13-23 3Q really spelled the difference.

KG: Yeah, we always want to be in that position at halftime
  • For the most part we really executed our game plan in the first half
  • But in the 3Q we were 3/13 & then 7/14 from FT line.
  • Listening to Coach “Paint” show before I came on he says “Sometimes that just happens.” When that happens we’ve got to be able to dig down deeper on D.
  • Dayton handed it to us. They didn’t have as many off rebs the 2nd half but they capitalized on every single one in the 2nd half.
  • But as I said, what we learned from that loss helped us play so much better last weekend.
TN: That Dayton team is favored to win the Atlantic Ten and I think would be a very competitive team in the Big Ten.

KG: Oh absolutely. They had 3 5th year seniors, one other senior and a sophomore. They have mostly played with each other for two years.
  • But we’re still trying to figure things out.
  • I love my team - how hard they play for me right now.
  • They’re fun to be around right now.
TN; One week ago you had a game with just a 48 hrs turnaround. That’s a little unusual when you’re not playing a tournament.

KG: Yeah it was a good experience for us really - like for when we get the the Big Ten Tournament.
  • We played Sat night and had a little walk-thru Sunday but we got after it a little as we didn’t really want to waste a day.
  • On Monday we won (Marshall 70-60) - it wasn’t pretty but we gutted it out.
  • Wins don’t have to be pretty right now, they just need to end up with a W.
TN: And you hit your FT’s in that game, 21/26.

TN: So you get on the road at the St. Pete’s Showcase and I think everybody looked at that and said “Wow, you’re going to have to play a couple of Top 25 teams in three days. You started on the road against West Virginia on Thanksgiving. They jump off to an 8 pt lead in the first 4 mins. For the rest of the 36 mins it was dead even but you could never make up those first 8 points.

KG: I don’t know how many fans saw the game but honestly we had some really good looks in those first few mins. We missed two layups & Madison air-balled a 3PT in the corner. Maybe it was nerves or inexperience but those were really good looks that didn’t go down.
  • We battled - stuck with the game plan and executed it really well.
  • It was a 4 pt game with about 4 minds to go. We trapped them and got a steal but then we lost it on a turnover.
  • They scored and that kinda took the air out of it.
  • We had ourselves in a position to win after a tough start and battled.
  • WV rebounded well - were a good physical BB team.
  • After the game I told them I wish I had done a few things differently to help them win the game.
  • It will help me learn and grow as a coach.
TN: So once again you had two games in even less than 48 hrs because your next game against Florida State was at 11AM on Saturday. It had to be one of the more bizarre games in the history of WBB. You go up 26-10 in the 1stQ and then they scored the next 27 pts. You had good looks but were 0/13 in the 2ndQ. What was it like in the locker room at half?

KG: I think we were “a little tight” at halftime like “Wow, what just happened.
  • With a couple of mins left in the 2Q I sat back and said “Oh my God, we are not going to score this quarter.”
  • We were getting looks and we only had 3 TOs.
  • The best thing was it was still only a 7 pt game.
  • In the first Q we jumped out and had a lot of energy. In the 2Q we did the same thing and nothing went down.
  • At halftime I got on Madison and Shaya a little bit and they came out and responded in the second half beautifully.
TN: FSU scored the first 4 pts in the 3rdQ so you’re down 11 now but thas most impressive to me - that you could get it down to a manageable lead by the end of the 3rdQ and then in the 4thQ everybody hit shots. Hardin had six 3PT in the game.

KG: Yeah, Hardin had some big shots. But if you didn’t watch the game you have no idea what that kid did. She was guarding a 6’4” post and battled her butt off.
  • On the perimeter we did a really good job of trying to take away some of the things FSU did.
  • They wanted to play in the high/low and we were deceptive guarding it.
  • They only had 4 offensive rebs and we only turned it over 10 times.
  • Shaya was something really, really special in the second half.
  • Brooke hit a huge 3PT to tie the game going into the 4thQ.
  • It was good to see Madison “back.” Good to see her make some shots.
  • Whether the players were on the court or on the bench, they were locked-in.
  • It was a really fun game to be a part of.
TN: I was listening to Brian Jennings broadcast the game as I was driving in to the Bucket game, You were up by one with less than a minute to play and you were passing in the ball. I wondered which direction you would go - you got the ball in to Ra Shaya and she made a great baseline spin for a short baseline J that really sealed the game for you.

KG: Yeah, that was kind of the 2nd option there. We wanted to give Madison a look at it but they took it away from us. But our group stayed with what we wanted them to do and Brooke threw it in to Shay and she made a great drop step and finished it.
  • Then we got a stop on the other end and made two FTs and we were able to ice the game down the stretch.
TN: I want to bring up Rickie Woltman. You have talked a little bit about her before but she is really giving you some quality time right now off the bench,

KG: Yes, she’s doing exactly what we need her to do and more on top of it.
  • We want to be sure we put her in a position to be successful. We told her to defend your butt off, rebound your butt off and she’s doing that.
  • But now she’s getting more and more confident on the court so that we’re throwing her her the ball and she’s wanting it.
  • She had a huge bucket down the stretch. Missed the layup, got the off rebound, powered it up against FSU’s big in a crucial moment for us.
  • To have both Shaya and Rickie inside not just for Rickie to get def rebounds but as a post presence - I can’t say enough about how important that is for us.
  • She works her butt every day in practice for us.
  • I feel the longer the season goes on the more we are going to see of Rickie.
TN: You also talked about Jeanae Terry when you brought her in from Illinois and she’s done so many things for you - played so many different positions. That’s really important as you go through the rest of the season.

KG: Yeah, she had 10 assists and only one TO against FSU.
  • We’ve put the ball in her hands a little bit more in the last two games especially in transition and half-court.
  • We moved Abbey off the ball a little bit worrying that the pressure of the game could affect Abbey at her size.
  • She had made that change beautifully.
  • Walking into practice today she asked “Do you want me to take some reps at the point?” and I told her “I want you to get a lot of reps at the point today,” (Laughs)
  • Her energy is so contagious. She just wants to win BB games.
  • She is willing to do whatever it takes for her team to win games.
TN: We’ve talked about Cassidy Hardin who was named to the All Tournament” team down there - I think she is showing she can be more than a 3PT shooter. You mentioned her guarding a 6;4” post player.

KG: Going into the season I don’t know how many fans thought she would make an All Tournament team somewhere. She is just playing well right now.
  • The only bad shot she takes are the ones she doesn’t take.
  • She spaces the floor for us and understands the game of BB.
  • Defensively she will do anything. She will take a charge for us, she’ll be the one to do help side for us. It doesn’t matter if she is guarding the perimeter or a 6”4” or 6’5” post player.
TN: I have a feeling she will lead the team in charges taken this year.

KG: Yep, you see her on the floor a lot.
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TN: I wanted to add some more data to a few of our former Boilers playing professionally.
Adreona Keyes (2014-2018) - In her last game in Romania she had 19 pts, 10 rebs and 3 blocks. She is averaging 21 PPG for her team which is 6-0 this season.
KK Houser (2009-2014) - Playing in Poland had another huge game with 23 pts and 6 assists. Her team is 4-3 and is averaging almost 16 pts and 4 assists a game.
Sam Ostarello (2009-2013) - Who by the way is now a naturalized Italian citizen now, is playing In Italy. She had 7 pts in her last game which is now 5-2.
Aya Traore (2003-2006) is playing in Spain and in her last game had 12 pts and 5 rebs. Her team right now is 6-2 and she is averaging more than 13 PPG and almost 6 RBG.
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TN: We are joined by Brooke Moore.Her mom is watching on Facebook. Welcome. What has the season been like - it must be fun to be at 5-2 and have a win over a top 25 team.

BM: Yeah, we’ve been having a lot of fun so far. Just learning every day and listening to Coach Katie and all our coaches.

TN: Coach Gearlds told me the weather was great in Florida. How hard was it to get off the plane back here on Sunday?

BM: Oh, it’s tough - it’s tough. I’m from the South.
  • We know the snow is really fun sometimes but…
  • Last year was my first time being in snow. It’s pretty but too cold.
TN: I’m going to talk about your HS career in Atlanta. You were the 4A player of the year and lead your team to a state championship. When did you start playing BB?

BM: Around 7 or 8. I was actually was first in Florida and then we moved to Atlanta when I was 7yo.

TN: When did you realize you had the ability to get a scholarship?

BM: I got my first offer in the 7th grade. I got moved to the top teams and when coaches came to look at them they saw me too.

TN: You decided to go to Auburn and played two seasons there and decided to come to Purdue. What made you decide that?

BM: Well, the Big Ten is a very good conference. I always wanted to play in a good conference.
  • I did a lot of research on Purdue. I knew Dominique Oden and talked to her and all the great things she had to say.
  • I couldn’t visit because of COVID.
  • I understood how it was a BB school and how well the fans support every team.
TN: The locker room after FSU had to be exciting. We talked about the end of the game and there were double technical fouls - two on Purdue (Kyle and Terry) each team. You were on the floor and I heard you pulled one of your teammates away from the scrum.

BM: Yeah, I had to pull Shaya away. She’s the type of player who is real passionate. She’s like the “mom” of the team. She’s going to be there for everybody and I felt it was my duty to grab her and get her out of that situation.

TN: Let’s talk about the coaching change. Coach Gearlds was going to be the assistant coach but then suddenly was named head coach. What was that like? (And I will remind you she is sitting just off stage.) (Laughs)

BM: Oh she is a very cool coach. I’ve learned a lot from her. Honestly I would not want to play for any other coach.
  • We’re having fun and honestly that’s the biggest thing.
  • We smile and do it all.
  • There are days that Katie comes in and says “I know your tired but let’s just do it.”
  • That’s the biggest thing - to know the coach and coaching staff have our back. And that want to see us win.
  • This last win we were so happy. Everybody was smiling, everyone was cheering & happy.
  • We dumped Coach Katie with water.
  • It was a beautiful moment and we have moments like that in practice too.
TN: That seems to be the comments of people who are watching the team - they say the team looks like they are having fun. It is a long season and we are only at the end of November. You need to have fun.

BM: Coach Katie makes sure we do. She writes on the board, the last thing before evert game “Have FUN.” “Play together and Have FUN.”
  • That’s the key to our being successful so far and that will be the key to us being successful down the road.
TN: What do you see as your role on this team for it to be successful and for you to be successful?

BM: The number one thing is energy. I think a lot of people feed off me for energy. I am always wanting to joke around. I think that’s what the team needs sometimes. But it’s about energy.
  • Secondly on offense and defense I’m an upper class-man so whatever I need to do to get the team a win that is what I will do.
  • Obviously my role has changed from last year. But I trust Coach Katie - we all trust Coach Katie.
  • I would never question her and what she has for our game-plan.
  • I just try to be ME everyday and it’s working so far.
TN: Let’s talk about the school aspect of it. We have two more weeks of class and then the finals. You have all that plus a lot of BB. How do you balance that?

BM: Well we rely on our tutors and counselors. But it’s really tough.
  • When we were in Florida, we didn’t “have work” but we had work.
  • We weren’t in school but we had a lot of work to get done.
  • We might want to hand out on the beach but you may have to type up this paper.
  • You just need to remember that you have assignments coming due.
TN: Life after basketball - you’re hoping to play for a long time. But what will happen when you have to hang it up?

BM: I would love to coach. And then after that or during that go into Roller skate (or real estate??). It’s really popular around Atlanta.
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TN: We had Brooke Moore talking about her role and she said it was to provide energy. What do you see that you need from her?

KG: Exactly what she has been giving us.
  • We’re starting to magnify her a little bit more.
  • I think she is becoming more comfortable doing what we have asked her to do.
  • I told her coming in that we would bring you in off the bench but “pull the reins off her a little bit.”
  • We talk about we want to get Madison and Shaya going early and we want to get Hardin going in transition. So when she is in the starting lineup she doesn’t get to be Brooke.
  • So bringing her in off the bench allows her to be Brooke.
  • She is really starting to understand that if the ball “pops” and moves side-to-side then it is going to get back to me.
  • She got it going against West Virginia and then not only did she hit clutch shots against Florida State but she made clutch defensive plays for us.
TN: So Georgian Tech is coming up Wednesday night. Nell Fortner is their head coach. She was here in 1996-1997 and then left to Coach the Olympic team. She led Purdue to an improbable BIg Ten title and almost an upset of the top seed (Old Dominion) in the NCAA tournament.
  • They’ve really gone international. of their 11 players are from overseas so maybe we’ll see a little different style from them.
KG: Yeah, but BB is BB. Watching them and us you’ll see a lot of similarities in the way they play and the way we try to play.
  • They’re big inside and they have an international point guard.
  • They have a real athlete on the wing and a lot of shooters to go around.
  • Obviously we will have our hands full. We’ve got to do a good job on the boards and take care of the basketball.
  • If we can do that we will give ourselves a good chance to win.
TN: Georgia Tech is just outside the Top 25 ranking. They were in the Top 25 but then lost one game.
  • Then you have to Big Ten coming in on Sunday with #18 Ohio State.
  • They are unbeaten but have not played a great schedule.
  • Jacy Sheldon leads them in scoring (19 ppg, 47% from the 3PT).
  • Taylor Miksell who is now on her 3rd college BB team - started at Maryland (for 2 years), then to Oregon (for 1 year) and now to Ohio State - she’s only shooting 59% from 3PT range.
KG: Obviously not someone we can leave open.
  • RIght now I just haven’t dug into Ohio State - just focusing in on Georgia Tech.
  • It will be a huge opportunity for our BB team.
  • They were always tough when I was here.
TN: How do you feel about playing two Big Ten games in early December?

KG: It might be different for our team but actually this was how it was set up at Marion. We would play 3 or 4 league games and then go back to non-conference games.
  • A basketball game is a basketball game. They are all important.
  • There is none more important than the next one.
TN: You are trying to build your team up and get some momentum built up. What is it like playing during prep for finals and the holidays?

KG: The good thing for us is we have two weeks of Wed/Sun games and then we have a week off. That’s finals week.
  • We’ll work around their finals schedules.
  • We’ll give them some time off - they’ve played a lot of games.
  • They are student-athletes. We need to make sure that we allow them an opportunity to finish the semester strong.
TN: Are you settling in on your rotation?

KG: I think we have a decent understanding but we are still filling things out.
  • I still want Jayla to be a part of the rotation. She got really sick with allergies when we were down in Florida. Allergies really kicked her butt so she did not play much against FSU.
  • Right now my problem is a little bit different than Coach Paint. His team is phenomenal and we’re just trying to figure it out.
  • We’ve only been together for 2 1/2 months.
TN: But the good thing is you are seeing Rickie Woltman stepping up. You are seeing Cass guarding people she has no business guarding but she is doing it well. Whatever you are selling they seem to be buying.

KG: It’s a lot of belief in them and making sure they feel comfortable.
  • We need to make sure we as a staff don’t put them in a position to fail.
  • I always tell my team - “I’m not going to ask you to do something that I think you are unable to do.” “I am not going to ask you to do something for our team that is going to make you look silly.”
  • We want each of them to be successful. They’ve really bought into that.
TN: More and more people come up to me wanting to talk about this team and I think that is a testament to what you and your staff have done here - not only this month but through out the entire summer.

TN: Good luck and we will see you next week.
Interesting to me that Coach makes less and less effort to disguise the fact that she has remade the team from what it was doing under Versyp.. It must be delicate as I am sure she does not want to make an enemy of her former coach but it is clear she feels things needed to change and that the way things were being done before was not a way that would lead to success.
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