Nov. 19, 2015
GEORGIA TECH HEAD COACH Brian Gregory
“Really, very pleased with just our focus and our intensity to start the game. You know every year is different and you’ve got to figure out your team a little bit, and I was excited to see how we would respond after a well-played game and important victory on Monday. To come back and start the way we did and to play with the energy level that we did that was good to see. You have five seniors so you have to count on those guys for that, but you have to trust them and put a little faith in them. And they did a very good job with that. I thought our defensive energy was good to start. Offensive execution and unselfishness was very good. So I was obviously pleased, very pleased with that. And give them [Green Bay] credit. They went to some different guys. They’ve had a tough, tough trip in terms of just travel, but they’re going to figure things out. They are going to be pretty good. Give Travis [Jorgenson] and Josh [Heath] a lot of credit because they guarded a high-level guard in Carrington Love today and did a great job of just disrupting him and keeping him out of rhythm. I thought that was a big key.”
On Tech coming out strong and rebounding on the boards
“Well, we only had a one-day prep because we took Tuesday off due to NCAA rules and regulations. We had to do that. So we had one day, but that one day was filled with some extra rebounding. Green Bay is averaging 16.5 offensive rebounds a game and that being two road games against Stanford and East Tennessee State. So they’re a dynamic offensive-rebounding team. So, it was good because when you do something not according to your identity, which Monday night was when it came to us on the defensive glass, to be challenged right back after that and then respond the way we did. They ended up with 10 [offensive rebounds] and they might have got three in the last three minutes.
Now the problem is there weren’t going to be a lot of offensive rebounds the first ten minutes of the second half because they made every shot they took. We didn’t guard a soul. But, we were much better on the glass today. Much more physical against a team that’s a good rebounding team.”
After the other night, hardly hitting any three pointers, was it nice to see them go in tonight?
“Yeah. We don’t worry about it. Right now we’re focused on ‘Are we getting quality shots?’ ‘Is the offense creating quality shots?’ ‘Are players making the next pass to go from good to better, in terms of shot selection?’ We did that on Monday night; we just didn’t make them. The one thing is, and I talked about it after the game and I didn’t really emphasize it, we gave up 24 offensive rebounds Monday. We also got 19 offensive rebounds on our end. We are a very good offensive-rebounding team and even when you miss quality looks, what you’ve done is you’ve broken down the defense and you’re going to offensively rebound better. And we were able to get some put backs. Even today, we had 15 offensive rebounds with as well as we shot the ball. That was because our offense created good looks. And if you break down the defense, they’re going to have a hard time keeping our guys off the glass. But, it is always better when the ball goes in the first time too.”
GREEN BAY HEAD COACH LINC DARNER
“They came out the first seven or eight minutes and I don’t think they missed a shot. It seemed like they scored every possession down. They got in a good rhythm whether it was feeding it inside and scoring or knocking down threes. We just couldn’t overcome it. I don’t know if anybody in that first half could have beaten them the way they shot the ball, shooting 71 percent and 60 percent on threes. We didn’t guard them very good, but they’re hard to guard when they make shots like that.”
Was fatigue a factor?
“I don’t know if there’s another team in the country that’s had to do what we’ve had to do. Last week [we] fly out to Stanford, and we’ve got to go commercial. We have a four-hour delay. We get into Stanford on Thursday, and we don’t have the chance to practice. We haven’t practiced since last Wednesday. Then we play and spend the next day coming back. Then we get up and fly down to East Tennessee State and get the 6 a.m. game. Then we play this one. [We’re] playing two high-majors in the first three games on the road with a lot of travelling. I don’t want to use excuses, but I told our guys that if you watch an NBA team do that the third game is normally a tough one for them too. I thought tonight would be a very tough one. I was hoping we could get them to miss shots. We had a couple guys that we wanted to let shoot it and they made shots tonight. That’s the price you pay when you play these games. You want to try to figure out what you want to give up. They came out and hit those shots and it seemed like it got the other guys going and we couldn’t stop them. I burned my three timeouts, and I was about ready to use my fourth one in the first half just to try and slow them down. I don’t know that anybody could have slowed them down in the first half. Halftime was the only thing slowed them down.”
How did Georgia Tech’s post players affect the fast start?
“We can’t play against size like that. I hope nobody in our league has four post players like they do. Just physically the size and how strong they are, they overmatched us. We tried to box them out sometimes, and I don’t think it mattered. They just went and got it. They’re awful good at that and we’re not very big and not very strong down low. I just think they went and got it. I don’t think it was them pushing off or going over our back. I think they just went out and said ‘I’m going to go get it’ and they went and got it from us.”
Did Georgia Tech’s tempo surprise you at all?
“No. I’ve known Coach [Brian] Gregory since my playing days at Purdue when he was at Michigan State. They played fast at Dayton and they’ve pushed it. I think they’ve got a nice group of guys and if they can shoot the ball like they did tonight, it’s going to make it a lot easier for those guys down low to score. We were kind of hoping they wouldn’t shoot it. They’ve struggled a little bit in the past and some of their guys have struggled shooting it. We rolled the dice and they threw it out and knocked them in. Josh Heath goes 6-for-7. We seem to do that. We’ve gone into each game with a certain game plan of ‘okay we’re going to double off of him.’ We did it at Stanford and their point guard gets 23 [points]. We did it at East Tennessee State off somebody else and he had a career night in the first half against us. It hasn’t worked for what we’ve tried to do. When we play this game we have to give up something. If we tried to guard them man-to-man, it would have been a 50 or 60 point game.”