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Nov. 20, 2012

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Virginia Head Coach Tony Bennett

On playing 6 games in 12 days:
“I thought they came out with a lot of energy. The first half was the best half of basketball that we’ve put out there this year. I thought they were very active on the defensive end. They were swarming the ball and bothering the posts. In the first half, you could see that Mitchell is talented, but when he gets going he could be a load. I thought we did a great job in the first half with the energy. When they are motivated, the mind is always stronger than guys realize.”

On North Texas’s second half momentum:
“I thought we played well in the first half. There were three areas that really cost us in the second half that really brought them back in the game. The first was transition defense. Whether it was a make or a miss, North Texas would either get it under the net or they would go. The second thing was handling the pressure. We got rattled. I think North Texas got a little tired because they came with everything, but we didn’t do a good job. Finally, the rebounding hurt us. When you look at the offensive rebounds, they had 21 offensive rebounds. A lot of that was our guards not engaging or being in the play.”

On Teven Jones’ performance:
“I am pleasantly surprised. I always knew he was quick, but we haven’t seen him play a whole lot in a game setting. He wasn’t available for the first two scrimmages and the first game. Then during the Delaware game, he pinched a nerve so couldn’t play again. For him to be able to step in and contribute they way he did was great.”

On the high volume of fouls:
“We knew we were going to be at the free throw line. They were giving us their intensity and physicality, and trying to make us make plays. When people are pressuring you that much, you not only have to be able to be tough enough to be open, but there are also times when you have to be able to go by them off the dribble. I thought we were better as the game went on, and their intensity waned a little bit because it’s hard to play that intense for the whole game.”

Virginia Sophomore Guard Justin Anderson

On North Texas:
“North Texas is a tough team. Not a lot of people give them credit, but their toughness is tremendous, and we had to match their intensity. They have a great player on their team who gets a lot of attention, but the other four guys on the court are also tough, and will jump into you. They play defense really well.”

On his turnover issues:
“It’s all a part of the game, turnovers and assists, positives and negatives. And I can’t let that affect me personally as a player, because my teammates have my back and they’re going to lift me up if I have a turnover. As far as playing better today, it’s just preparation. My coaches put me in a good position and its up to me to execute their preparation. It’s all about what’s best for the team.”

Virginia Redshirt Freshman Guard Teven Jones

On his teammates:
“Everybody gets down and when we hit that rough patch I figured, why can’t I be there for them? We all have each other’s backs and I think it shows out there on the court.”

On his relationship with Jontel Evans and the possibility of playing off the bench:
“Me and Jontel have a very close relationship. He’s like my big brother. Coach Bennett said when we’re both healthy we’re going to be a tough team to deal with because we can both put pressure on the ball and run the team. When he gets back I’ll be even happier, and I’m fine with coming off the bench behind him.”

North Texas Head Coach Tony Benford

On the game:
“I would like to give Tony and his group credit. They had a great game plan and came out and took us out of a lot of things we wanted to do. They did a good job doubling Tony Mitchell, and Chris Jones, who has been playing really well. They did a great job executing on the offensive end. We told our guys that they’re one of the best teams around, even if they are young. They do a great job of moving the basketball and getting the ball to the right shooter, and guys that can make plays. They did a good job executing.”

On North Texas’ play:
“Our guys need to understand that we can’t dig ourselves a hole and get down 20 and try to come out and fight. We need to slow them down from the beginning and do what we talked about in the scouting report. But, our guys gave a great effort.”

On second half play:
“We just came together and told ourselves we need to calm down. We go against managers in practice, about eight of them pressing us. So, we said this is easy, and we settled down.”

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