Mercyhurst Quotes

March 21, 2013

Head Coach Michael Sisti
Opening statement...
"We're excited to be here. Obviously, our program has done an awful lot over the years. I always say that any accomplishment we get, whether it's the team or individual, should be shared by all our past and present players and coaches. Everyone worked hard to put their mark on the program and help us to move forward. What is nice and rewarding is that this particular group went back to our grass roots with their work ethic and their passion, their pride and their team chemistry. I'm just really proud of them; they've earned everything they got all season. It's been a fight since the beginning of the season, and we've gotten better each week. We fought through our league playoffs, which were really challenging, and we found a way to win the CHA playoff championship. Then, last week we had another gut check, but our players and staff did a great job supporting us, and it was an exciting college hockey game. I'm really proud of them for winning the game, but also of how they won the game with so much pride and passion. They represented themselves and our school well."

On today's practice...

"It went well. Our kids seemed relaxed, and had a nice mix of focus and excitement. I'm looking forward to seeing them play tomorrow."

On playing with a chip on their shoulder because expectations were down with 12 new players this season...
"We never lower the bar; we always want to do great things. From when I started the program, no one expected us to be great, but we didn't let other people's opinions stop us from achieving our goals. I give my staff and players the credit, because they go out and get the job done, in recruiting and in playing the games and in practice. There were a lot of games this season where this team could have felt sorry for themselves or made excuses, instead when the chips were down, they found a way to win."

On playing in a conference that doesn't always get a high level of respect nationally...
"It's tough to win consistently, no matter who you are. Sometimes in the past, because we didn't have a lot of teams in our league, people thought our league wasn't good. But, when team's season revolves around beating you and they don't care if they lose all their other game, they just want to beat you, and you get them at a whole different level. It's tough to win those games when the pressure's on you. Our teams have done that, and the thing is, to win the years we've won, it's something that people overlook. We've been in the NCAA Tournament nine years in a row. When you look at all the great teams, all the great programs that play women's hockey, that's tough to do. We've done it nine times in a row with an at-large bid. People will talk about our schedule, but with the way the NCAA chooses teams, you can't get in by luck. You can't sneak in the back door. You've got to win hockey games, and that's something our players have done."

On Boston University...
"They're a very good team. I don't think you could get here if you're not a great team. They're very deep; they have good goaltending, a great set of D, and very skilled forwards. They play consistent every night. They're a well-coached team, and they've been here before too. They have some world-class players, and they've earned the right to be here. Any team that's here is capable of winning the tournament. We respect them very much and have had some great games against them in the past. We have both ended each other's season in the past, so it should be an exciting game."

Junior forward Christine Bestland
On being able to tie and/or break the program's record for wins in a season this weekend...
"It's pretty special to be a part of that. I know we worked really hard this year. With 12 new players, it's a totally different team.  We worked really hard from the beginning of the year with workouts on the ice and off the ice--we're just really excited to be here."

On her 71-point season to this point...
"I basically look at my numbers and don't really think anything of it. If it wasn't for my team, I wouldn't have those numbers--they help me out a lot. Most of my points are assists, so I need them to finish it off and put it in the net, so if it wasn't for my team, I wouldn't have the points that I have. We have a lot of great offensive players, so that makes it a lot easier."

Senior goaltender Stephanie Ciampa
On her strong senior season that includes a 20-1-0 record...
"I was just trying to make the most out of this last year. I'm just trying to work hard and do my part to help us win. I've been working and chugging for the last four years and this year I'm just doing the same thing I've always done and I'm doing my part and playing my role."

On her feelings of Lakers' 4-3 overtime win over Cornell in the NCAA quarterfinals...
"It's a whole new weekend this weekend--we're playing a whole new team. We can definitely use the experience of last weekend to help us for this weekend."

On being able to tie and/or break the program's record for wins in a season this weekend...
"What that team did was really special. It's pretty cool to be in the same position to do that, but we still have a game to win before that."




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