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Feb. 9, 2005

Recap | Box Score


We are very fortunate to win the game tonight. Simply put we played very good defense. We shot the ball poorly from three-point land, we shot the ball poorly from the free-throw line and we had too many turnovers, but we defended and I think that was the reason we won. Devin Smith made a big shot.

We didn’t practice yesterday because half of the team was sick. We just had a walkthrough. Our team showed a lot of character tonight and a lot of courage. It wasn’t pretty tonight.

We turned it up down the stretch. We changed a couple different scenarios. We were man-to-man but we did a couple different things on their screens. We contested shots a little better and we wanted to win. They wanted to win, but I think we dug down tonight a little more.

Elton Brown was fired up and played with a lot of animation tonight. I thought he was overpowering for four or five minutes. He was sick so we couldn’t play him for long. I think for a few minutes he took over the game on offense.

When we win a game, we gain a little more confidence. We have to win with defense. We’re not going to outscore people–we’re not that gifted. We have a good team, but we don’t have that type of personnel. We have to play smart and play good defense.

The fans are great. We appreciate the fans that were here. They helped us win tonight. I hope they had fun. We can only control what we can control. Historically fans only come to the big games; every game is a big game for us.

We will have to defend Virginia Tech better this time. We turned the ball over too much; we need to take care of the ball. We also need to guard their perimeter and we have to play for 40 minutes.


Like so many times this year it seems as though when we really need to be at our very best from an execution standpoint, we falter. Up until the eight-minute mark I think we played and put ourselves in a pretty good position. During the last eight minutes, we lost our patience and composure and we executed poorly and couldn’t come away with a basket. I have to give Virginia a lot of credit as they played the style of ball to give them a chance down the stretch.

You have to put certain types of ingredients on the floor that can create offense when the defense is solid during critical portions of the game. We have not developed to that point. In our system we have to execute, move the ball and use schemes to get people their best look. I think we have some youngsters who will develop into players who can create, but we’re not at that point right now. During that critical part we were not able to create for ourselves or each other.

Down the stretch we became a little tentative, but I also think that everyone made an attempt to play within themselves to a certain degree, we made poor decisions down the stretch. Maybe if we executed a little better we would have been able to create more for ourselves.

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