[2 AP/2 Coaches] Duke (16-1, 3-0 ACC) vs. N.C. State (10-5, 1-2 ACC)
Tuesday, January 20, 2009 • 8:05 PM ET • Raycom
Cameron Indoor Stadium (9,314) • Durham, N.C.
Game Quick Facts
TV: Raycom; Steve Martin (play-by-play), Mike Gminski (analyst).
Radio: Duke Radio Network (flagship WDNC 620 AM in Durham); Bob Harris (play-by-play), John Roth (analyst) and Matthew Laurance (sideline).
All-time Series: Duke leads the all-time series135-96, including a 44-23 mark at Cameron Indoor Stadium. The Blue Devils have won two straight in the series and six of the last seven contests.
Overall Record: 819-268 (34th year)
Duke Record: 746-209 (29th year)
vs. N.C. State: 43-19
Blue Devil Bits
l Duke is 16-1 on the year, including a 3-0 mark in Atlantic Coast Conference play. The Blue Devils have now started the season with a 16-1 mark 12 times, including eight times under Mike Krzyzewski.
The Blue Devils are ranked second in the AP poll and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll. Duke is 108-16 all-time when ranked second in the AP poll.
Duke is first in the latest RPI according to CollegeRPI.com. The site also ranks Duke’s strength of schedule third in the NCAA.
The Blue Devils posted their eighth straight victory with a 76-67 win over 13th-ranked Georgetown on Saturday. Duke posted its 68th straight non-conference home victory and improved to 3-0 on the year against ranked teams with the win over the Hoyas.
Junior Gerald Henderson paced the Blue Devils with 23 points, including 17 points in the first half, on Saturday. The Merion, Pa., native knocked down his first seven field goal attempts, including three three-pointers, against Georgetown.
Sophomore Kyle Singler posted his second straight double-double and fifth of the year with 15 points and a career-best 16 rebounds versus the Hoyas.
Jon Scheyer added 11 points, four rebounds, five assists and three steals on Saturday. Scheyer has 10 assists and just one turnover in Duke’s last two games.
Tuesday’s game marks the 232nd meeting between Duke and N.C. State, making it the most played series in league history. The Blue Devils lead the all-time series, 135-96, including a 44-23 mark at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
The Blue Devils have won 11 straight games at Cameron Indoor Stadium against N.C. State. Under Mike Krzyzewski, they are 20-5 at home against the Wolfpack.
Duke has won 18 straight games in the month of January dating back to a 74-63 loss at Georgia Tech on Jan. 10, 2007.
The Blue Devils are 197-54 under Coach K in the month of January, including a 91-7 mark since 1998.
Since losing to Michigan, 81-73, on Dec. 6, the Blue Devils have not allowed more than 70 points in a game. Duke’s opponents are averaging just 57.9 points per game over the last eight contests. Five of Duke’s last eight opponents have scored fewer than 60 points.
Sophomore Kyle Singler leads Duke in points, rebounds, assists and steals. Christian Laettner is the only Blue Devil to lead the team in four major statistical categories in a season. Laettner led the team in points, rebounds, steals and blocked shots during the 1990-91 season.
Junior Gerald Henderson has reached double figures in scoring in each of the last nine games, averaging 17.3 points per game in those outings. He has scored at least 15 points in six of his last seven games.
Duke is one of three teams in the ACC to have three players rank among the top 20 in the league in scoring. The Blue Devils are led by Kyle Singler who ranks ninth (16.8 ppg.). Gerald Henderson ranks 17th at 14.0 points per game and Jon Scheyer is tied for 18th at 13.8 points per game.
Gerald Henderson is shooting .807 (46-of-57) from the free throw line this season. Entering the year, he was a career .657 (138-of-210) shooter from the charity stripe. Henderson is also shooting a team-high .449 (22-of-49) this season after shooting .318 (28-of-88) from three-point distance in his first two seasons.
Sophomore Kyle Singler averaged 15.0 rebounds per game in Duke’s last two contests. He had 14 rebounds against Georgia Tech and a career-high 16 boards in the win over Georgetown. Singler had six offensive rebounds in each game.
Sophomore Nolan Smith is shooting .930 (40-of-43) from the free throw line on the season. He has been perfect from the line in 12 games this season and has made his last 10 free throws.
The Blue Devils have the top scoring defense in the ACC, allowing only 60.6 points per game. Duke has held 11 of its 17 opponents to 60 points or less on the season.
Sophomore Kyle Singler has five double-doubles this season to rank tied for fifth in the ACC. He has posted double-doubles in each of Duke’s last two contests.
The Blue Devils are 13-0 when outrebounding their opponent this season. Duke ranks second in the ACC with a rebounding margin of +8.0 this season. Last year, Duke ranked ninth in the conference with a +0.1 rebounding margin.
Junior Jon Scheyer has a 3:1 assist-to-turnover ratio in the last six games. He has 10 assists and just one turnover in Duke’s last two games.
The trio of Kyle Singler, Gerald Henderson and Jon Scheyer are averaging a combined 44.6 points per game. They have accounted for 55.4 percent of Duke’s scoring through the first 17 games.
Duke is 15-0 when leading at the half. The Blue Devils have faced a second-half deficit just two times (Rhode Island, Michigan) this season.
Josh Smith had a big week on the hardwood out West as he led Kentwood to three victories scoring 19, 33, and 25 points in the games. Smith continues to be the leading scorer in the South Puget Sound League 4A Conference at 24.9 points-per-game.
On Saturday evening, Smith scored 25 points as Kentwood defeated Federal Way 52 - 50. On Thursday, Smith scored 33 points as Kentwood defeated Kent Meridian 57 - 53, and on Tuesday, Smith scored 19 points in a 60 - 29 blowout of Tahoma. Kentwood opened the game with an 18 - 0 run and never looked back.
Moving to the Midwest, Harrison Barnes scored 13 and 26 points in two Ames victories. Barnes' 13 points came in a 70 - 35 rout, while his 26 points came in a 22 point 81 - 59 victory on Friday night. Ames is now 10 - 0 on the season.
Andre Dawkins scored 26 points with 15 coming in the second quater as Atlantic Shores defeated Norfolk Collegiate 71 - 55. Dawkins made four three pointers in the contest.
There is always something special when one of the nation's best programs comes into Cameron for a non conference contest. The crowd seems to amp it up a bit, the intensity is at a high level, and the play is inspired and emotional.
All of the above held true on a game that started at 1:30 on Saturday afternoon as Duke defeated Georgetown 76-67 for their 67th consecutive home court win against outside invaders.
It was the kind of win that assures the Blue Devils a solid seed come March and a victory that allowed Coach K to further analyze his team before it gets into the meat of the ACC schedule.
The Crazies had a bit of fun ragging on Greg Monroe, the talented freshman that spurned Duke without taking a visit. It was obvious that Duke did its scouting on Monroe for they got the big man into foul trouble, essentially taking him out of the game during key stretches.
Gerald Henderson continued on his tear of late with an amazing first half show that enabled the Devils to pull away in what was a tight game before intermission.
Georgetown would of course make a run but could get no closer than four. Singler, who struggled with his shot early, gained his bearing and tossed in 15 points and grabbed a most impressive 16 rebounds.
Paulus added a needed spark off then bench with 10 points and 2 assists and his emotion rubbed of on not only the crowd but his teammates. Paulus scored his 1000st points moving him to 46th on the all time scoring list.
Freshman Miles Plumlee played his best minutes as well and he should be able to build off the performance.
Jon Scheyer was steady as ever leading his team with 5 assists and playing some really good defense, again leading the way with 3 steals and a lot of contested or deflected passes.
There were a lot of positives and we will have more coverage on this important win tomorrow, so check back in. Until then, take a look at the game quotes -
Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski
“Well, it’s a great game. It’s two hard-nosed teams who play defense, and kids who play hard on very possession. We feel very fortunate to have won. I thought we played well enough to win and I think [Georgetown] played well enough to win. It was one of those games. [DaJuan] Summers is a very special player – one of the best we’ve played against this year or will play against. He’s really good. Obviously [Greg] Monroe is a special talent, and they have a great perimeter. I thought Kyle [Singler]’s rebounding performance was spectacular – 16 rebounds in this game when we only had 32, although there weren’t that many missed shots. That’s a spectacular performance. And, [Gerald Henderson] really gave us a huge boost, I mean he played a terrific game. I thought [Greg] Paulus played withthe fight that he’s had throughout most of his career here, and I think he’s finally getting healthy. He and Nolan [Smith] out there in this game was a good combination and it limited our turnovers – we had 14 assists and 12 turnovers. The last 10 minutes of the game with Kyle in foul trouble was interesting, but we hung in there and made our free throws, didn’t make mistakes down at the end there. I’m real proud of my team, plus the crowd was great. It was a great atmosphere and the crowd helped us, no question about it.”
On the switch in lineup and less minutes for the post players:
“A lot of it had to do with their offense. Monroe is a very unique player, and he’s their point guard – he plays at the top, goes to the side, and if you play him in a traditional sense, big-on-big, he’s going to get a lot of open passes. His vision is terrific, so we thought that was part of how we might be able to limit them. [Miles] Plumlee came in and did a great job for us. We have a versatile team, and we should be able to use our personnel to match up against someone the way we did, and that’s why we did it.”
On the impact of the technical foul called on Monroe: “It gave us two points. We were really horrible on three straight offensive possessions in transition, where we could have gotten six points, and I think they ended up getting seven off of those, and that’s a huge swing – potentially a 13-point swing. It was one of the worst swings of the game, and we were responsible for that. So, [the technical] just kind of stopped the game for a while, maybe we righted the ship, and we hit the free throws.”
On Gerald Henderson’s play recently: “I think he’s finally over that wrist injury. Remember he was out for four months – he didn’t do anything basketball-wise for four months at the end of last season. It’s still not 100-percent, but now he’s learned to finally live with it. The last month he’s just kind of gone off. I think he’s in great shape, probably the best shape that he’s been in since he’s been here. His weight is down, so instead of playing at around 215-216 [pounds] he’s probably 210-211 and all those things have an impact.”
On Georgetown’s offense: “Theirs is a read offense. It’s based on movements and reads. [Coach John Thompson III] gives his guys a lot of freedom in that offense, and that’s why Monroe is so huge with that because he has a great feel for the game and he makes good reads. What we tried to do is rush the quarterback, at least put pressure on the quarterback, so it at least took away some of his vision. He had four assists but he had four turnovers. He had a good game, but when he walks on the floor he can potentially have a great game. He had a good game today and that helps us.”
On Greg Paulus’ play:
“I thought that was, by far, his best performance this year. What he showed was fight. He was playing really good defensively, playing with emotion, and gave us a huge boost. I mean, we don’t win the game without Greg today. Greg had a huge impact on today’s game.”
Duke Junior Gerald Henderson
“The first half was great. It was special. My teammates were finding me and I was knocking shots down. We got a good lead at the end. In the second half, shots weren’t falling like they were in the first half. I just started getting to the rim a little more. They started taking some things away, but I ended up on my drives being able to kick it out to my teammates so it was good.”
“I grew up basically in Villanova. I’ve been to Georgetown-Villanova games at the Pavilion. I’ve been to those games, I’ve watched them play, and I know what kind of intensity the Big East brings. Growing up around that, it was fun to play them and beat them.”
“This is the second time I’ve played Georgetown [in Cameron]. Both games have been unbelievable in terms of intensity, and this one didn’t disappoint at all. We won but it was a lot of fun.”
“I think after [the Michigan] loss where nobody really played that well, I kind of made it a mission to myself that I could contribute more and do a lot more out there on the court. A loss really kind of made me realize that. Up to that point, we were winning but I wasn’t playing all that great. That loss kind of opened up my eyes and told me that I needed to contribute a little more.”
Duke Senior Greg Paulus
“Whether the team is from the Northeast, the South or the West, you want to win and you want to win at home. You want to protect your home turf. We really wanted to win this one, not because it was ACC-Big East, but just because we’re playing and we hate to lose.”
“It was a very intense game. They’re a big, physical team and we’ve played them a couple of years – I’ve played them three times – so we knew it was going to be that kind of game. We knew that was the type of effort we were going to need in order to win.”
On Gerald Henderson:
“He’s playing well. He’s got a lot of confidence and we have a lot of confidence in him. Some of the moves that he’s making are at a very high level. It’s tough to defend and you can really feel his presence out there.”
“Whenever you can play one of the best teams in the country like Georgetown you get that type of experience. You play a lot of different teams in non-conference and they’re big and they’re long, and those are the types of teams you could see in the NCAA Tournament. Having this type of experience to win, it’s a good thing for our team.”
On his defensive spark in the second half: “We needed some energy so I tried to make a play. Luckily I got my hand on a ball and it was just good energy that we needed. We had those types of plays – Jon [Scheyer] made a steal that was big, Kyle [Singler] hit some threes – so we did a good job of closing the game out.”
Duke Sophomore Kyle Singler
On his first half shooting: “Sometimes your shot’s not going to fall. You can’t get down on yourself for missing a shot. Things happen. I thought the whole team played well and I fed off the team. That’s what happened – I wasn’t worrying about whether I was making my shots or not. Once the crowd got into it, you kind of lose all sense of if you’re making shots or not.”
“These types of games are very good for us. This is a very good team. It’s the type of team that’s a top team in the ACC. It’s a team that you’re going to play in the NCAA Tournament. It’s great preparation. But when it comes down to it, the game is over and you have to move on. We have to go on to N.C. State and start the ACC and keep on doing what we’re doing – playing good basketball.”
On his improved rebounding: “A lot of times the balls just come to you, to be honest. But it’s those 50/50 balls that you kind of haveto go out of your way to get. I had a couple of those tonight and I was able to get those 50/50 balls. One of the other main things that happens [compared to] last year, you’re older, a little stronger, you’re able to withstand a full-length game. You’re able to have legs and go get balls, and I’ve been workingreally hard on grabbingrebounds with two hands, especially at this level. A lot of big guys get hands on ball and tip them out of your hand. As a rebounderthat‘s the most frustratingthing.”
Georgetown Head Coach John Thompson III
Explanation on technical foul on Greg Monroe “They outplayed us, we’re not going to sit here and look at that and say that was the reason the outcome was what it was. They outplayed us, that’s why we lost.”
On Duke’s run in the final eight minutes of the first half “During that stretch I think they did a very good job of executing at the defensive end and we couldn’t fall into a rhythm. We didn’t execute well at the offensive end, we made some poor decisions. And as happens with good teams, they got to feeling good, they went on a run, and the emotions of the building took over. So we went for too long of a stretch not scoring. But that’s a tribute to them.”
On lineup changes from first and second half “The group with [DaJuan Summers], [Greg Monroe], [Austin Freeman], [Jason Clark], [Omar Wattad] was playing well. We were down 15 or 16 and got it to four. Then they got a little tired and the lead went back to 11 or 12 I think. We got them back in there and the lead went back down again so this group was playing well together.”
On Greg’s reaction to the technical foul
“He was just saying to me ‘I didn’t say anything, I didn’t say anything’. I don’t know what went through his mind, but that’s what his reaction was.”
On what he takes from the game
“It’s a non-conference game in the middle of a very tough conference schedule, so it’s a very disappointing loss for a lot of different reasons, but we have to moveon. I think we continue to see our comfort level with different groups. Like you indicated, tonight it was Omar [Wattad] and Jason [Clark]. We made two separate runs when those guys were on the floor, so it’s going to be a different group on different nights depending on the flow, depending on what my feel is, and what I think is working and what is not working.”
On technical foul
“The technical was a key part of the game, let’s not try to run from that, it was a key part of the game. On top of everything, now Greg [Monroe] has four [fouls]. It clearly altered how they attacked us and what we could do, but that’s not the reason that we ended up with less points than them tonight. They played very well. They made plays, particularly in the first half. Early in the first half they were making tough shots. We played the defense, but they were making tough shots. Then there was a stretch in the second half where we were getting good looks, the ball just wasn’t going in, so that’s sports, that’s basketball, that’s life. They beat us today.”
On Gerald Henderson
“He put them on his shoulders and carried them. He was terrific. He was unbelievable. He just got into the flow and that happens with good players. He got into a rhythm and made everything he threw up.”
On how playing in the environment helps the team
“You go to places and you play the games and hopefully you learn from mistakes. We have to take something away from every game, win or lose.”
Georgetown freshman Greg Monroe
Whether he heard anything being said behind him
“A lot of people were saying things. I don’t even believe he was really looking at the bench, but I know I definitely didn’t say anything. I can’t say if I heard someone else, but I know I definitely didn’t say anything.”
Georgetown junior DaJuan Summers
On his offensive production slowing down in the second half
“I did miss a lot of key free throws, but that’s not why my offensive production stopped or slowed down. I tried to find different looks, not force shots, and find the best shots down the stretch. That’s probably mostly why.”
On team’s offensive execution down the stretch “I didn’t say it wasn’t great. I said, me down the stretch, I was trying to make the right play. They play good defense. They are a good defensive team and we as a team have to figure out ways to get better shots and not let the other team dictate where we are going to get our shots. That process is key for us, but they play great defense.”
BLACKSBURG, Va. -- Chante Black registered her third straight double-double in ACC action to lead fourth-ranked Duke to a 57-52 victory over Virginia Tech on Friday night in Cassell Coliseum in Blacksburg, Va. Black notched 13 points and 14 rebounds in 34 minutes to lead Duke.
Blue Devil Postgame Notes
Duke at Virginia Tech * January 16, 2009
With The Duke Victory:
* Joanne P. McCallie continued her best start in her 17 years as a head coach at 15-1. Her previous best start was in 2004-05 as she guided Michigan State to a 12-1 mark.
* Extended its win streak to 13 games.
* Won the 10th straight game against Virginia Tech.
* Joanne P. McCallie improved to 3-1 all-time against the Hokies.
Senior Chante Black
* Posted double-figure scoring for the 16th straight game to open the season. Is the only player in the ACC to score 10+ points in all of her teams games this season.
* Notched her third straight double-double in ACC action with 13 points and 14 rebounds.
* The double-double was the seventh this season and 24th of her career.
Senior Abby Waner
* Did not play due to a sinus infection and coughing.
* Missed her first game of the season and only the fifth of her career.
Senior Carrem Gay
* Came off the bench in the first half and then started the second half, after scoring five points, notching two steals and two rebounds in 10 minutes.
* Finished the game with seven points, five rebounds, three steals and two assists.
Junior Bridgette Mitchell
* Hit her career-best third three-pointer of the season.
* Finished with five points and two rebounds.
Sophomore Karima Christmas
* Made her first career start.
* Had nine points, three rebounds, two assists, two steals and one blocked shot in 23 minutes.
* Hit 12 out of her last 18 field goals.
Sophomore Jasmine Thomas
* Struggled shooting from the field as she went 0-of-10 field goals.
Junior Keturah Jackson
* Led Duke with three steals.
Freshman Kathleen Scheer
* Hit 2-of-3 three-pointers marking the second-most three-pointers in a single game this year and a career best in ACC action.
Other Duke Notes:
* All four three-pointers were made by the Blue Devil bench.
* Nine different Blue Devils scored.
* Totaled only one player in double-figure scoring for the first time this season.
* Hit 4-of-5 free throws in the final 22 seconds of the game.
* Had 28 turnovers which was a season high against ACC opponents.
* Held a 23-8 advantage in bench points.
* Outrebounded its opponent, 39-35, and has outrebounded 14 of 16 opponents this season.
* Coach P improved to 24-3 when holding opponents to under 40.0 percent from the field (30.9).
* Hit 45.7 percent from the field, which is the highest against an ACC opponent this season.
* Duke will next travel to N.C. State on Monday, Jan. 19 for a 5:00 p.m., contest in Raleigh, N.C.
DURHAM, N.C. - Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski was named co-recipient of the 2008 USA Basketball National Coach of the Year award on Thursday for leading the United States to a gold medal in the 2008 Olympics.
Krzyzewski, the head coach of the U.S. senior men's national team, will share the honor with Anne
Donovan, who also led the women's senior national team to a gold medal in Beijing. Krzyzewski made USA Basketball history as the first coach to receive the USA Basketball National Coach of the Year title in three consecutive years, having also won the honor in 2006 and 2007.
"I'm very honored, but what this award really recognizes is the commitment, dedication and selflessness of everyone involved with the USA men's team," Krzyzewski said. "Our success was achieved through hard work and teamwork. Everyone - Managing Director Jerry Colangelo, my coaching staff - Jim Boeheim, Mike D'Antoni and Nate McMillan - the support staff, and, of course, the players, had a hand in helping the team win Olympic gold. As I've said previously, we were blessed to have many of the world's best basketball players, and they not only played with great intensity and teamwork, but also represented the United States in a manner that made everyone proud. I also congratulate Anne Donovan with whom I share this year's award. Coach Donovan did a tremendous job with the women's Olympic team and in a short amount of preparation time, molded the women into a true gold medal team."
USA Basketball also will nominate Donovan and Krzyzewski for the U.S. Olympic Committee's 2008 National Coach of the Year award, which is expected to be announced in the spring of 2009.
USA Basketball's National Coach of the Year award was established in 1996 to recognize a USA Basketball head coach who, during the year of the award, made significant impact on the success of individual athlete and team performance at the highest level of competition. Other previous USA Basketball National Coach of the Year award winners include Gail Goestenkors (2005); Van Chancellor (2004, 2002); Larry Brown (2003, 1999); Jim Boeheim (2001); Nell Fortner (2000); Clem Haskins (1998); Mo McHone (1997); and Tara VanDerveer (1996).
Duke managed to put away Georgia Tech last evening 70-56 to go to 3-0 in the young ACC season despite struggling from the field offensively. With a loaded schedule that includes Clemson, North
Carolina and Wake Forest twice, each win is important and you can bet that Coach K has his team trying to avoid a letdown.
While Krzyzewski will not allow his team to look too far ahead, with a big national showdown against Georgetown looming this Saturday, perhaps it couldn't help but be in the back of the players minds. That thought likely went away after tip off against Tech in that Duke found themselves down eight early in a night where it seemed they couldn't throw the ball in the ocean in the first fifteen minutes of play.
On a night where the Blue Devils got little production from the center or anchor position, Duke depended on it's big three stars in Kyle Singler, Jon Scheyer and Gerald Henderson. Coach K let it be known to voice of the Blue Devils Bob Harris in the post game radio show that he was not too happy with the fact that Zoubek and Thomas managed 4 points, 6 rebounds and 8 fouls.
It's vital that Thomas and Zoubek reassert themselves with a Georgetown team coming in that handled #8 Syracuse easily at home on Wednesday. That team features former Duke prospect Greg Monroe, a freshman sensation that can pass or dish assists with the best of them, not to mention control the paint.
Kyle Singler found himself having to play much of last evenings game down low and he certainly produced against the Jackets, going for 19 points and 14 rebounds. The thing is that he was forced to play almost the entire game and should that continue there is a possibility he'll wear down as the season progresses.
Jon Scheyer has had two miserable shooting games from the field, but he always finds ways to help with his court savvy. He struggled with his shot early but always plays a great floor game on a consistent basis. Last evening was no different, where he tallied 14 points and led his team in assists with 5 and grabbed 5 boards for good measure.
While Greg Paulus gave Duke a much needed lift in scoring eight points off the bench, he failed to hand out one assist. That is not necessarily his role this season, but with Nolan Smith having an off night offensively and dishing just one assist, distribution has to be an area of concern at the moment for the Devils.
Quite simply, Duke needs two positions to be more productive on a consistent basis to continue to flourish as they have early, earning the #2 ranking in college hoops.
Despite the aforementioned concerns, Duke finds ways to win and more often than not it is with their defense. Krzyzewski has his team playing at a very high level defensively and so far this season, they have held three conference opponents to around 53 ppg.
Another vital part of the team pushing their record to 15-1 is the play of Gerald Henderson. "G" has adjusted as the season has gone along and has been very consistent of late. Henderson can do things other players can't with his athleticism and versatility. A well rounded performance against the Jackets was what the doctor ordered. His final stat line was 19 points, 7 rebounds and 2 assists.
One has to be impressed with the results so far this season. On a night when Duke struggled with their shooting from the field and the free throw stripe they managed a win. If this teams offense becomes more consistent, they'll be a load for whomever they face the rest of the way.
Coach K post game comments, courtesy of Duke Sports Information -
"We won a hard-fought game tonight. We knew coming in that Georgia Tech, for the first time this season, was close to being 100 percent. They didn't start the year with Clinch, then Miller was sick, and then Peacock was sick the last game, but they had everyone tonight. Obviously those guys will still get in better shape. As a result they can hit you with different lineups now. They can start that big lineup and they can bring Miller in, and you have Shumpert, Clinch and Miller with Peacock and Lawal - they are a good team, tough to score against. I thought our defense helped win the game for us. We played very well, defensively, in the second half. I thought we played the last 10 minutes of the first half well defensively but they kind of knocked us back and we didn't do what we wanted to do on the top ball screen. And they executed well. They are a very big team. Kyle [Singler] came up with some huge plays for us, especially on the defensive boards. And then G had a really good second half offensively. Both teams had trouble scoring because we are both pretty good defensive teams. We got a big boost in the first half from Paulus and Marty [Pocius]. Greg and Marty gave us a big boost, and then Dave [McClure] was terrific in the second half, defensively. He had two big blocks and was a heck of a defensive player. And we needed that. It was hard fought, and a good win for us. Hooray for me, I'm happy. When you win a game like this, it's not an easy game. They are good."
Comment on rebounding:
"Yeah, we had a couple more. But that fact that we weren't hit hard, a lot of it had to do with Kyle. Kyle had 14 rebounds. All of a sudden on some of those misses, you saw Kyle with two hands coming up and that gives you a possession. Neither team scored quickly, so when you got a possession it meant a little bit more in this game. Dave came up - his blocks were the main thing. And then trying to stay in front of Lawal was huge. Our post defense was a lot better in the second half."
Comment on Gerald Henderson coming up big in the second half:
"He's a good player, first of all. Their defense was taking away the drive. They were really playing like zoning up, and we ended up just kind of pounding the ball in the floor. I told him to either shoot it or pass it - don't just keep dribbling it. He wants to beat you, he's a good player. In the second half our offense had a little bit more movement and we put him in a couple different places so he could do it. He lost it a couple of times, but we went to both him and Kyle. We tried to run a bunch of things through those two kids."
Comment on big men going over top of the screens:
"I thought Kyle, in particular, defended that well. We're a very good defensive team. In the first half, we did not do that well. We started switching, and then our little guy went down, instead of the big guy staying and the little guy staying up on top, which is what we practiced. I felt like the father that tells their kid, and they say that they never heard you. Well I said it, I said it a bunch - I even called a timeout. In fact, you're even IN timeout right now. But that's what happens, and to our kids' credit, they got it straight after a while."
Comment on the league:
"I think our league is the best it's been for a long time. We've got four teams in the top-10. We just played Tech and Florida State, and they can play anybody that we've played. Our league is the best league. The fact that we have 12 teams shouldn't be discriminated against. Believe me, we don't want more - I don't want more. But we have a hell of a league. It's an older league and a bigger league. We have some big teams in our league - Tech and Florida State are two of the biggest teams in the country when you put those lineups out. We've been No. 1 in the RPI, We have had the best non-conference. I've always been a cheerleader for the ACC, but this year, even more because we have a lot of good teams. And always in the league, there are always two things that bring around the differential: an injury and close losses."
Comment on strategy on defending Lawal:
"We wanted to pressure the passer. I think we were the first team this year that pressured the high post instead of dropping off. We tried to stay where we were between him and the ball. Ball pressure is key - we wanted to pressure the passer (because) the passer can see more. But he's good. He's gotten really strong, and you can tell that kid's really worked. I don't think anybody that I've seen yet, and I know I haven't seen everybody, but I don't think anyone runs the floor quicker than Lawal. He goes from the defensive end to the offensive end real fast. He's a big time player and competitor.