Postgame Quotes: Notre Dame at Cincinnati
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Jan. 7, 2013

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Notre Dame at Cincinnati

January 7, 2013

Fifth Third Arena

 

Postgame Quotes

 

University of Cincinnati Quotes

Cincinnati head coach Mick Cronin

Opening statement:

“Notre Dame played a great game so give them a lot of credit. It was a great college basketball game. Definitely, I’m not happy with the loss. In my opinion, seven second-half turnovers beat us. We shoot 57 percent in the second half, shoot 67 percent from three, and those are seven possessions. Notre Dame is a great offensive team. We might have had some defensive breakdowns, but you have to give them credit. Jerian Grant making two NBA shots. They make some big time plays. We were going to have to score more than 60 points tonight to win. Pretty evident that no one is going to beat this team scoring 60 points. Period. End of story.” 

 

On needing to score more than 60 points:

“You can replay things anyway you want, but no one is going to beat them scoring 60 points, definitely not tonight.  I think it was doable. We could have scored more points tonight. We left points on the board. First half, I thought we had three shots around the rim that we got hit on. We have to learn to play with more contact and not bank on calls. Get those balls in the basket. That’s my opinion. At the end of the day, what Cincinnati would have had to have done to win this game is we could have scored more points. They played great offensively. Their last five games they have had over 80 (points) every game. So 66 is nothing to sneeze at defensively against them. Obviously, I’m unhappy with some of the things we did defensively.  I think we could have scored a lot more tonight.”

 

On UC passing better:

“We had 18 assists. Our passing was way better than it has been in a month. Our passing was as good as it’s been in a long time, and it was yesterday in practice.”

 

On Shaquille Thomas earning more playing time:

“I think he has earned it. I think the development of our team and those guys are a part of it. I think he has a lot of talent and long term we will be better the more he develops. Obviously, there is going to be growing pains with that. A couple of times defensively he might have missed rotations. He’s the only guy – along with Ge’Lawn (Guyn) and Cheikh (Mbodj) – that played without a turnover. You are going to have some growing pains.”

 

On UC improving its offense:

“Absolutely, 18 assists on 23 baskets. I still think our free-throw shooting needs improvement. Games like this when you are playing a really good team and are playing really well, to beat them you can’t go 5-11 from the free-throw line. Again it goes to offense, and you can only stop them so much. You have to get the ball in the basket. Whether it was the (Thomas, Kilpatrick and Rubles) all missed a driving lay-up in the first half, 5-11 from the foul line and those seven turnovers. Those are all offensive possessions where we came up empty. Against this team, you won’t beat them unless you can put the ball in the basket.”

 

On the play of Kelvin Gaines:

“It’s the best he’s ever played: four rebounds in 11 minutes. He got a big stick back in the lane. He did a great job of trapping. He got tired. That’s the only reason he came out and David went in was Kelvin was going to pass out. He was literally going to pass out. I saw him running down the floor gasping for air. In his defense, he hasn’t played those kinds of minutes. That’s the challenge for him is to always get him to where he can use his athleticism and make multiple efforts in a row. He has great athleticism. It has been a three-year project with conditioning with our strength and condition coach.”

 

Cincinnati Player Quotes

No. 23 - Sean Kilpatrick, G

On Notre Dame three-point shooting hurting UC:

“Three-point shooting and they got a lot of lay ups on the pick and roll.”

 

On how difficult it is to guard Notre Dame when they pass the ball:

“It’s tough but the weak the side needs to be able to see it and rotate because we know that they are looking for the skip pass.”

 

On coach being upset about their defensive performance:

“For the most part we did decent but we didn’t do to what we are capable of to our potential. Like I said, they hit a lot of shots and it killed us when the clock was running down but we didn’t do a lot of rotating.”

 

On how much pressure it is defensively because of Notre Dame’s multiple scoring options:

“It is, but it’s the BIG EAST (season) now. We’re in a league where everyone on (the opponent’s) roster can play and that’s something that we have to sit and figure out now because it’s not like it’s December anymore. It’s January. This is the meat of the schedule and that’s something we really need to get in our minds.”

 

Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey

Opening Statement:

“I’m really proud of my team. The toughness that we had to display both physically and mentally against an unbelievable defense, for us to be that efficient against that defense I think really was the difference. We did a better job of guarding the three-point line in the second half and it helped us escape, and anytime you can win on the road against a really good team it’s gratifying. So I’m just proud of our group and their toughness both physically and mentally.”

 

On how their maturity helped them overcome an early UC scoring run:

“At that timeout there we’re older, we’re less flustered and we’re not looking at the official saying how we got fouled or complaining about missing a shot. That’s where we’ve grown up and our maturity has really helped us. That’s a good reference point as we go on the road again, just to take a punch, to take a punch and be ready to come right back, and we came out of that timeout rolling.”

 

On how they found ways to score when their three point shooting slowed:

“Our guards were fabulous tonight. Just kind of using the ball screens and rolling to our big guys. We had some great drives as well. Those two guys just kind of operate things and I think that I have the best backcourt in the country, quite frankly, and they played like it tonight on the road. The three-pointer was not going to do it in the second half and we had to get some other stuff.”

 

On Jerian Grant’s progression as a player:

“He’s really grown up. A year ago here he looked like he was on a JV high school team with his body language and moping around and complaining about fouls. He has really come along way. I think he gave us a great defensive effort tonight against some strong guards on the other end, but he loves making big shots and he made a bunch of them tonight.”

 

On stopping Cashmere Wright:

“Eric Atkins had a fabulous game because he handled the ball the whole game against pressure and he guarded that guy and never let him get going. I think his game was fabulous because he defended [Wright]. We were really aware of him and just didn’t want to let him hurt us from the three-point line and he didn’t, but some other guys did in the first half. I thought we adjusted in the second half and made them more of a two-point shooting team.”