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Feb. 22, 2014

Recap | Box Score | Notes | Photo Gallery media-icon-photogallery.gif | Photo Gallery media-icon-photogallery.gif | Photo Album media-icon-photogallery.gif

Virginia Head Coach Tony Bennett

On UVa’s 25-0 run:
“It feels like we’ve had a few of those over the last three games. It’s interesting that three games ago Justin got a block and Joe hit a three against Maryland, then this game Justin gets a block and Anthony gets a nice breakaway dunk. Against Virginia Tech, Justin dove on a loose ball and got the momentum going. Each game there has been something that started the momentum. It was a good way to finish, because Notre Dame is hard to guard. They do some of the same things we do. I think a key stat is their zero points off turnovers in the second half. We tightened up offensively and defensively in the second half. We got a good lift from Darion, and all the guys really.”

On Justin Anderson:
“He’s such an x-factor guy that, if you’ve seen him, he comes out of nowhere and can gather and get way up there. His timing is really good. He has the ability to track the ball, especially in transition. But, we want him in the right position on the floor. I really think he’s doing the things that are helping us win. He’s doing some special things. I let him know that I liked what I saw and I think he’s given us a great lift these last two or three games and I’m proud of him in that regard, but I hope there’s much more.”

On Akil Mitchell:
“Look at his 7-of-7 from the floor, and our bigs were 14-of-17 from the field, Akil really found some holes against there zone and their man-to-man, and was able to score some buckets.”

On missed shots:
“We have to play every possession, and when the other team gets off track then that’s when a run may happen for us. If we have the mindset that we don’t have to play every possession because we will go on a run then we’re mistaken. I’m thankful for the runs, but you have to be in there every possession at this time of year. That’s what I was frustrated with at halftime. We played about 20-25 seconds per possession and then broke down at the end. It’s nice to see them able to make plays like that down the stretch, but we’ll have to do that all game.”

On UVa being first in the ACC:
“That’s something that you have to earn the right for. I told them before the game that they’ve earned the right to have this opportunity in front of you this game. I asked them if they were going to waste it or take advantage of it, not meaning win it or lose it, but closing out with high hands, making the most of every possession and worrying about the process and being faithful to that. We use the step analogy, and the next one is the biggest in front of us.”

Virginia Redshirt Sophomore Forward Anthony Gill

On Justin Anderson’s block:
“It was my mistake at first, because I was supposed to be helping over, then Justin blocked it for me. I was going to push it all the way, but I felt like Coach Bennett wasn’t going to be too happy about that. So I gave it up to Malcolm and we converted.”

On the emergence of his offense at this stage of the season:“I’m just trying to understand Coach Bennett’s system every day. I’m trying to understand what he wants from me defensively. I’m just really trying to focus on that. And once I get my defense down, my offense will come.”

Virginia Sophomore Guard Justin Anderson

On his block that ignited UVa’s 25-0 run:
“That’s the packline defense. You help each other. That’s what we do. I saw their big fella go up to try to throw it under and I timed it up right. I’m surprised I didn’t get a foul called, but they said I didn’t get his hand. But it was a great play and a great finish by Anthony Gill in transition.”

On his reputation for iconic blocks:
“It is very satisfying. That is what this program is all about. It was built with defense. We have the defensive foundation. When you have a great play like that in transition and it leads to a big basket every time, it’s a huge lift. Even if sometimes in transition we may not get a shot right away, it gives us that lift and gives everyone on the bench that energy.”

On being the sixth man:
“It’s kind of nerve racking as a player, because you don’t know how the flow of the game is going to go. Especially being the sixth man you don’t know how it’s going to go because if London is locking up on defense, Malcolm is locking up on defense, Joey is locking up on defense, and then we’re getting great stuff (on offense), then you realize I’m going to go in when it’s time for fatigue. “

Virginia Redshirt Sophomore Guard Malcolm Brogdon

On the team’s collective confidence:
“We just play with a confidence that is unshakeable. Whether or not we are down, whether or not we get punched in the face first in terms of a team coming out and hitting a couple shots, I think we have a lot of resiliency at home, and we play with confidence.”

On his scoop shot layup while getting fouled:
“I wasn’t actually that surprised (that the ball went in). I enjoy finishing. I really work on my finishing and touch around the basket. And while that was a pretty crazy finish and roll, I expect my shots to go in, I really do. I was hoping it would drop and then it did.”

On the atmosphere at John Paul Jones Arena:
“I think it is (one of the toughest places to play in the conference), if not the country. I think it’s a really tough place to play because we have such a great fan base. I can’t speak enough about our fans and what they bring to us during the games, and the momentum they help us create.”

Notre Dame Head Coach Mike Brey

On the game:
“That is an example of how fragile a game can be. For thirty minutes, I really liked what we were doing. Virginia is really good, they are really, really good. I think they are the best team in the league and they put it on us twice. Their big guys hurt us tonight. Their two big guys were fabulous. The whole team is so explosive. It is a beautiful facility and a great atmosphere.”

On defense:
“We tried a little bit of everything to stop them. I think we never got into any offensive rhythm and that really hurt us. Their defense kept getting better and we were not able to stop them. I like what we did for those thirty minutes. We have to get back and figure out a little more about who we are before we go to Greensboro.”

On going forward:
“We can’t dwell on it much and we are who we are right now. We have two games at home and we will take it from there. I’m really proud of our three freshmen and I want to keep encouraging them. We missed a lot of stuff around the bucket that was very deflating. We missed a lot of shots. We tried to get our big guys to roll off of those shots, but it wasn’t working.”

On Virginia:
“Virginia might be the best team right now talent wise. They are very physical. They are really good at guarding you and they dictate the tempo of the game. I think they are a really confident group. Their team knows who they are on both ends of the court.”

Notre Dame Sophomore Forward Zach Auguste:

On Virginia’s second half run to seal the game:
“Virginia is a great team and they came out playing with a lot of resiliency. It was tough to match up against them. We didn’t take care of our business like men.”

On the difficulties of playing on the road at John Paul Jones Arena:
“It gives a great boost of confidence for their team. It’s very loud in here and the fans are really dedicated. It’s a great arena.”

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