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Postgame Quotes: Wisconsin vs. Alaska-Anchorage, Jan. 26



Jan. 26, 2013

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Wisconsin Postgame Quotes
No. 20 Wisconsin vs. Alaska-Anchorage
Sat, Jan. 26, 2013 
Kohl Center — Madison, Wis.

Head Coach Mike Eaves

On Derek Lee’s status:
“I haven’t talked to the doctors yet. Everybody’s in there now getting ice packs and such, and they’ll look at everybody. So I can’t answer that right now.”

On what the referee’s explanation was for not calling a penalty on the hit on Lee:
“Their explanation to me was that nobody saw a hit to the head. All eight eyes said they did not see contact to the head. The young man left the game because of some kind of injury to the head, so … I wish you would go ask them. I can’t say anything, but if you could go down there and knock on the door and ask for an explanation, I’d appreciate that.”

On how he’d characterize his team’s play tonight:
“They grinded it out. Poor first period, had jump in the second and got a couple goals. I really liked the way that the kids solved the riddle in the third period. We didn’t give up a lot in the third period at all. We protected the puck well. There were a couple of Grade A scoring chances, but not very many at all, and when they pulled their goalie we were very solid. We looked like we knew what we were doing out there. We grinded it out and we solved the riddle on a night that was tough. We lose a senior winger in Ryan Little to illness and then Derek’s out of the lineup, so guys had to step up and solve that riddle. We grinded it out and did solve it.”

On Jefferson Dahl’s performance:
“Jefferson, in the second half (of the season) has chipped in offensively on several occasions, and tonight was one of those nights. We needed somebody to step up, with losing Derek Lee, and he did that tonight. He’s as solid a performer as we have, and you kind of know what you’re going to get from Mr. Dahl game in and game out. I can only remember one bad game that he had, and that was our first game back, up at Alaska, and I don’t know where he went, but he wasn’t there that night. Overall you kind of know what you’re going to get with young Mr. Dahl.”

On how comfortable he’d with Dahl centering the line with Tyler Barnes and Nic Kerdiles if Lee misses some time:
“Well, they did a pretty nice job. I think we’d have to sit back and take a closer look at what we might do in the absence of Mr. Lee, but tonight they had a little chemistry.”

On finding a way to win tonight:
“We’re maturing as a team. That’s what we talked about after the game. We solved the riddle tonight in a way that we ended up with a ‘W’. I wish, and the players wish, that every game would be like last night. We had great pace and tempo and shots, scored goals. But that’s not reality. These are nights where you’ve got to find ways to solve the riddle, and it’s not always pretty, but we did it.”

On Landon Peterson’s performance:
“(It was) exactly what we thought we’d get out of him. He’s such a competitive young guy. In practice, he does not like any pucks to get behind him, and he battles on every shot. It’s one of the reasons that he has the numbers that he has, and the way that he is helps push Rumpel. There’s a friendly competition there, and I think all coaches would like that on a team, to push each other and make each other better.”

On what he said to the team after a lackluster first period:
“It wasn’t 212 (degrees)—which is steam. It was firm in that I said, ‘we’ve been here, we know that we’re better, and we need to go out there and go back to basics, so it was more of a reminder.”

On the upcoming series with North Dakota:
“It’s perfect timing. It’s one of the great venues in college sports, and it will be filled to the rim with 11,000 people. I think it’s a great place to play, because as an athlete, when you’re in a place like that—it’s hostile, they’re right on top of you, you’re playing a good team—this is when you play your best. This brings out the best that you have. I’m excited to see how our team goes in there. It’s all about getting (points) right now. We’ve got to go in there and try to get some (points).”

Wisconsin Players

Jefferson Dahl on winning an ugly game:
“It definitely wasn’t how we wanted to start the game. That first period was pretty ugly. But, I like how we responded in the second and third and we somehow found a way to solve the riddle and get it done tonight.”

Dahl on his two-point night:
“On my assist, we wanted to establish pressure down low. There was a change and quick up to [Nic Kerdiles] and he made a great play around the defenseman. I caught it and saw [Tyler Barnes] back door and just tried to slide it over to him. On the goal, [Sean Little] made a good pass to Frank [Simonelli] and we talked about getting passes through, and Frank put a good one on net and there happened to be a rebound that found my stick.”

Landon Peterson on his mindset coming into the night not having played since Jan. 11:
“You have to come in prepared and focused each and every day at practice and every night during the weekend. Joel [Rumpel] and I are both playing well, so you just have to stay focused all the time.”

Tyler Barnes on winning a close game and the growth of this team:
“The strides we’ve made over the year are pretty amazing. We started out having a rough time and not playing well together. I think that’s the biggest thing we’ve changed is we’ve gotten used to the guys we’re playing with and we have more trust in the guys we’re playing with. Things are going more smoothly and the hard is still there and that’s where we need to keep the focus.”

Dahl on the strides the Badgers have made since the start of the season:
“The way we started off that first half wasn’t the way we wanted to. We knew we all had to be playing our best hockey in the second half and it’s just about bearing down, doing the little things and trying to get two points every night.”

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