Feb. 23, 2006
Women's basketball senior Brooke Queenan and her three classmates will play in their final game at Conte Forum on Friday at 7 p.m. when the Eagles (19-8, 6-6 ACC) host NC State (16-10, 6-7 ACC). Queenan, a 6-foot-2 forward from West Chester, Pa., looks to lead Boston College to its program-best fifth-consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance.
Q: With a 19-8 overall record and a 6-6 ACC mark, you have two regular-season games remaining. Talk about what have been the keys to another strong season.
A: I think it's all about playing the same way that we have always played. That's just good team basketball, good defense, and having a lot of scorers. That has always been our strength, ever since I've been here. This year, we are just continuing that.
Q: You are the team's top scorer (14.5 ppg) and leading rebounder (8.0 rpg). What has been your role this season as a senior tri-captain?
A: Well, my biggest role has been a captain and a leader in that respect. We already have a pretty experienced team. I've tried to bring together all of the things that I've been through, such as the experiences at the Big East Tournaments and the NCAA Tournaments. We've been to the NCAAs three times and to the Sweet 16 twice. I definitely have a lot of experience in the postseason, as do our other seniors. Being able to bring that and then, of course, being more of a scoring threat than I have ever been here. I've also tried to help get the rebounds and things like that on a consistent basis.
Q: This is a team that can certainly fire on all cylinders - from a dangerous three-point threat to a great inside presence to strong scoring defense. Talk about the various role players on the team and what they bring to the table.
A: Well, with Aja [Parham], not everything she does on the court really shows up in the stats, but she definitely brings our intensity and our vocal leadership. I think she's been huge this year by being consistent and grabbing rebounds for us and everything else. Obviously, Sarah [Marshall] runs the offense, controls the team and calls the plays. She's the person we look to set the tone. Kindyll [Dorsey] is someone who I feel has really stepped up. Not having played that much [prior to this season], I think that she has really stepped up. We all knew that she was capable of being a great shooter. She's our second-leading scorer and has been hitting some big shots for us. That makes it much easier inside by having her shoot so well from outside.
Q: Your team dropped its first four ACC games before righting the ship and reeling off six straight conference victories. What frustrated you most about starting 0-4 in the ACC?
A: A couple of the games that we lost were tough games and that was definitely frustrating. We lost to Maryland in overtime and then lost to Duke in the last five minutes. I think that those were frustrating just because we were so close. And then in a couple of the other games, we did not think that we played well at all, those being the Miami and the Virginia Tech games. We dropped a couple games that we were at least capable of playing better in. But, I think that motivated us and helped us to see what we needed to do for the rest of our ACC games. So, I guess it was good and bad. It made us look and see what we were doing wrong and why we lost four games in a row, because I don't think we had ever really done that since I've been here. But, I think it helped us to win the next six ACC games.
Q: How was your team able to turn around the 0-4 ACC start?
A: Well, I don't think we panicked or thought we were bad, or anything like that. We knew how good we were. And, that's what made the losses more frustrating. We looked at the losses to see what we were doing wrong. It was really just a couple things, like picking up our defense. Doing things like that have helped us, and they should continue to help us throughout the rest of the season and into the postseason, too.
Q: Prior to this season, you and your teammates had waited about two seasons to make the transition to the ACC. How would you describe the style of play in this conference, and what has the adjustment been like?
A: It's definitely different from the Big East. It was kind of hard for all of us, because [the seniors] had played in the Big East for three years. The style of ACC play is faster - they press more, they do more trapping, more things that we had never really seen in the Big East, such as 1-3-1 half court traps to pick up the pace. I think they like to transition a lot more than any Big East teams we ever played. It's been an adjustment to get used to that style of play.
Q: Looking ahead to tomorrow night, you, Aja, Christine and Lisa will take the court at Conte Forum for the final time. What do you expect for Senior Night in an important ACC clash with NC State?
A: For my last game in Conte, I won't really believe that it's my last game until I go out on the court. I've been here for four years, and I've been through so many different roles. I think that my career has really been a path leading up to where I am now. Playing for the last time will be emotional, but right now I can't really believe that it's going to be the last time. Going up against NC State will be a big game.
Q: BC won at NC State, 75-66, on Jan. 30. What do you know about NC State and what do you expect from them in the rematch?
A: We played them at NC State, and they are just like any ACC team. They're going to pressure us. They're going to press and trap. They do have more of an inside presence than most teams do. I think that they're leading scorer is a center [6-foot-3 Tiffany Stansbury, 12.5 ppg], so I think it'll be just like any ACC game, picking up the pace of the game.
Q: You've been a part of a women's basketball program that made back-to-back trips to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament and is now looking for its record fifth-consecutive NCAA appearance. What have been the highlights of your career at Boston College?
A: I think our Big East run in the Big East Tournament my sophomore year was huge. To come in as a fifth seed and become the first team to win four straight games to win the tournament, that was just a moment when our team really came together. I don't think anybody thought we could do that except for us. Beating UConn at UConn, that was just a lot of fun. My freshman year, even thought I didn't really play, we had two back-to-back buzzer beaters before reaching the Sweet 16. That was a lot of fun, too. During my sophomore year, we had a really great win at Ohio State to make it to the Sweet 16. I think that was really exciting for us. Last year, we had a really big win against UConn here at BC after having lost to them by about 30 points two weeks earlier. A lot of our tournament games are something which I'll definitely remember.
Q: What are the keys to a strong postseason run for this squad, both in the ACC and NCAA Tournaments?
A: I think in the ACC Tournament, we have to be really consistent. We have to consistently play our game, at our tempo. When we let that get away from us, we're going to have games like we did recently at Maryland, where we just don't play well at all. Being consistent and doing what we do best is going to be the key for us in the ACC Tournament and in the NCAAs.
Q: When you look back on your time at Boston College and your days in Conte Forum, what will you remember most about the experience?
A: I'll definitely remember my teammates, especially the seniors that I've been with for what seems like forever. We've been through everything together - sitting on the bench to playing to being role players. We've just been through a lot together. All my teammates, even those who have graduated, we still keep in touch. I think I'll remember the moments with them more than anything.
- interview conducted by senior Alex Timiraos