Women's Hoops: VandyMania talks with the players

On Sunday afternoon, Vandymania talked to Vanderbilt freshmen Tia Battle and Ashley Earley about Jim Foster's decision to accept the head coach position at Ohio State.

Vandymania: Tia, how did you all find out?

Freshman guard/forward Tia Battle: We actually met yesterday, yesterday evening with Coach Foster.

Vandymania: He was here? He called a team meeting?

Tia Battle: It was a called team meeting. He said he wanted to meet with us.

Vandymania: Was that the first solid indication you had that he would be leaving?

Tia Battle: We really didn't know. We had heard speculation, but we really didn't know.

Vandymania: How did you react?

Tia Battle: Well, I think initially we were all kind of shocked. We didn't have much to say. . . . We really didn't know what to say.

Vandymania: You're committed to staying here?

Tia Battle: Oh, definitely. They always tell you, "Choose the school first, choose the team, then choose the coach." I love Vanderbilt.

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Vandymania: When did you first get an inkling that he might be leaving?

Freshman guard/forward Ashley Earley: Well, I guess Thursday, but at that point I really didn't pay much attention to it, because I didn't think it was anything.

Vandymania: Ashley, when did you start thinking that it was serious?

Ashley Earley: : On Saturday when the meeting was called.

Vandymania: Are you already in strength and conditioning? That will just continue on?

Ashley Earley: Oh yes. You can't stop getting ready. You can't stop because there's some distraction or whatever.

Vandymania: Do you think there's a possibilitiy of transfers out because of this?

Ashley Earley: No, I don't think there will be transfers.

Vandymania: Do you think this will bring the team closer together?

Ashley Earley: Definitely, oh definitely. We're a team that faces challenges, and that's what you have to do -- you have to come closer together.

Vandymania: Do you see next year's seniors as starting to rally the troops yet?

Ashley Earley: Yes, definitely. Their senior leadership starts now.

Vandymania: Have you heard anything about our signees? Nicole Jules?

Ashley Earley: Yes, I talked with her this morning. She was shocked, surprised

Vandymania: Did she just learn it from you when you called?

Ashley Earley: I think she already knew. She was shocked and surprised, but I talked to her about it, and she's fine.

Vandymania: She still wants a Vanderbilt education?

Ashley Earley: Yes. She's still excited about coming here.

Vandymania: Do you know anything about her as a player?

Ashley Earley: I know she's a very good post player. I just know what Coach Foster has been telling us -- she's strong, she can bang, soft touch. She'll be good.

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In other news, according to trainer Kris Mack, sophomore guard Juli Colli is suffering from a novicular stress reaction in her left foot. Surgery is anticipated. Last year Colli was sidelined for several games with a stress reaction in her right foot.

Senior forward Zuzi Klimesova and senior guard/forward Jillian Danker have been invited to participate in the WNBA combine this weekend prior to the WNBA draft later in the month.

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