Nov. 23, 2011
– GEORGIA TECH HEAD COACH Brian Gregory
“I heard Glen (Rice) talk about energy. And that was the No. 1 theme. We wanted to make sure we went out there for 40 minutes and played with positive energy. I thought our guys did that. That does not mean it’s mistake free or it’s perfect by any stretch, but I think that was a focus and I think our guys took a step today in terms of proving to themselves that with a lot of distractions coming off a loss and a lot of games in a short period of time and a holiday tomorrow – all the different things – that they were able to focus on the task at hand and they did a very good job of that.”
“Our bench, in the first half, did a great job of sparking us. They created some momentum, and then when our starters came back in, at different time, they only added to it. That first half was a total team effort. I thought we did a really good job defensively, and when we defend and rebound like that, even though we’re getting better in transition, those points in transition and getting the ball to the early post really set the tone for the game.”
On Tech’s big men
“Daniel (Miller) can even be more aggressive in there at times. But we have to keep getting the ball into all our bigs. Julian (Royal) I thought played his best since the first game and that was a physical game today. Nate (Hicks) gave us some good minutes in the first half. But our posts are developing and gaining some more confidence and our perimeter guys are gaining a little more confidence in terms of delivering them the ball and being able to play from there. So I’m happy with their progress, and I’m happy with their ability on the glass. The other thing I mentioned on the radio is that Daniel had four blocks today. I don’t anybody has ever really talked about his ability to block shots. I think he’s over three per game right now, which is, believe me, the most I’ve ever had in anybody in 23 years of coaching.
On Pierre Jordan
“I thought he was tremendous. He’s banged up a little bit, but we got some answers to those questions with the soreness. But he felt good yesterday in practice and he’s been doing everything humanly possible and you could tell he had a little extra hip in his hop today and he gave us a huge lift. He got the break going, made really good decisions and set the tone for those guys coming off the bench. He set the tone for that energy we played with in the last 17 minutes of the first half.”
On team’s defensive progress
“I’m hard to please when it comes to the defense. We are getting better, there were lapses even in the second half. The one thing we have to understand about our defense is that we have to get better offensively. We can’t keep putting all the pressure on the defense. The one area of our defense we’re not as good as is our transition defense. We need to get better there. And that’s all about communication – and if you have kids nowadays you know that’s an area of concern. You cannot text message who you’ve got in the open court. You actually have to talk and communicate and that’s something we have to work on.”
GEORGIA TECH GUARD/FORWARD Glen Rice, Jr.
On team’s defense:
“We took a lot of time on the scouting report, and we scouted them real well. We knew their tendencies and what they like to do. I knew my teammates had my back on the help side, so it made it even that much easier.”
On playing for Coach Gregory
“We’re still adjusting. It’s comfortable. He’s making sure that we play as a team.”
On team’s communication
“If you don’t talk, you can’t play with Coach. At practice we’re talking constantly and that translates into the game. It makes us faster, quicker and we’re all on the same page.”
SIENA COACH MITCH BUONAGURO
“I thought our kids competed real hard with the circumstances. Obviously with injuries and everything else we only had seven scholarship players tonight. We just played Monday night and flew down yesterday. I think our guys gave really good effort and I thought Georgia Tech’s defense really bothered us. I thought we missed a bunch of layups, especially in the first half. That would have kept the game a little closer. That may have been from fatigue. You’ve got to give Georgia Tech credit. They played really good defense and they used their bench well. You have Glen Rice getting 23 off the bench and that made a big defense.”
On defending Tech’s low post game
“We only had a day to prepare. We’ve g tot keep our big guys out f foul trouble. We were playing behind and those kids have improved. [Daniel] Miller and [Kammeon] Holsey are better than they were last year. Holsey hurt us and they got some easy baskets.”
Did the contested shots by Tech get into the head of your players?
“Yes I think Georgia Tech’s athleticism and their length bothered us but we missed some point blank layups. We charted [that] we missed twelve layups in the first half. If we make half of those, it’s a six, seven point game. It’s a different game and the fatigue. It’s like I said, we had a war the other night against St. Bonaventure at home and now we fly down here with seven healthy bodies and we might have been fatigued and tired.”
Did the arena affect the depth perception of the Siena shooters?
“I don’t know. We came in and the kids shot around today for the kids to get used to the venue. I don’t know if that was a factor but with Brandon Walters and OD [Anoiske], those are shots they normally make.”
Will your travel team have more than 7 players in the future?
“We hope. One of our starters was hurt in the Navy game. Hurt his head, Owen Wignot. He’s been out the last three games. Trinity Burdine, one of our good sophomores, is out. Our top player, our point guard, Rakeem Brookins, from last year is out. And we have two African kids that are ineligible from the NCAA [Lionel Gomis and Imoh Silas]. We’re a team that’s playing at about half capacity.”
On the play of Evan Hymes
“I think the length and athleticism of the Georgia Tech perimeter players may have bothered him a little bit. He was getting in the lane but he was having trouble finishing. He had six assists; I didn’t realize that. The other thing about this game is that we didn’t turn the ball over. When I look at the stat sheet, we only had 10 turnovers but we couldn’t make a shot. That was the difference in the game. We could not make a layup or an open jump shot. I thought other than that our guys played hard and accounted themselves well.”