For two years, Olivia Antilla was an inside force for Benilde-St. Margaret's girls' basketball team, which won the Class 3A state championship in 2010 and finished third in 2011.
Now a senior, Antilla transferred to Osseo this year and was a vital piece of the Orioles' 2012 Class 4A state tournament team, which lost to Hopkins 77-55 in the championship game.
She led Osseo in scoring with 52 points in three games and was named to the all-tournament team.
Jim Paulsen caught up with Antilla in the bowels of Target Center following the tournament.
Q Talk about your transfer from Benilde-St. Margaret's. Was it difficult to change schools?
A Not really. There were family reasons for changing. It was easier because I already knew a couple of girls on Osseo, Janay Morton and Phillis Webb.
Q Did it take long for you to be accepted by the team?
A No, not at all. They accepted me as a member of the team from the very beginning. I felt comfortable right away.
Q What was the biggest basketball adjustment in going from Benilde to Osseo?
A Playing defense. At Osseo, Coach [Joey] Waters is all about defense. At Benilde, we talked about defense, but we didn't work on it like we do here. As Osseo, if you don't play defense, you don't play.
Q How difficult was that? Defense is hard work.
A At first it was hard. It seemed like all we did was defensive drills. But then you see why you do it and how important it is. It's all worth it. I just had to get used to it.
Q Osseo played well in opening minutes of the [championship] game, then Hopkins went on that 19-2 run and the game just kind of snowballed. Why?
A We started out good, but then things started to go against us and we stopped playing together as a team. We fell apart. Everyone was trying too hard and trying to do their own thing. We didn't play the same way as we did before.
Q What was going through your mind as Hopkins was building up that big lead?
A That we had to come back and finish the game strong. We weren't going to be able to come back, but we played hard until the end. And when we put the subs in, we were all cheering them on.
Q What's the difference between Class 4A and Class 3A?
A Class 4A is harder. The teams are more athletic, and it's more competitive. Not that there aren't great teams in Class 3A, but the teams in 4A like Hopkins and Edina are so good.
Q What are your plans for next year? Any basketball in your future?
A I hope so. I'm still looking around. I'm hoping to play Division I.
Q Any concrete names on your list?
A Not really. I'll let you know when I decide.
Q Overall, how do you feel about changing schools?
A It was great. I love Osseo. I bleed orange and black.