Jan. 16, 2014
MEN’S BASKETBALL POSTGAME QUOTES
MINNESOTA (14-4, 3-2 Big Ten) 63, OHIO STATE (15-3, 2-3 Big Ten) 53
WILLIAMS ARENA | MINNEAPOLIS
THURSDAY, JAN. 16, 2014
ATTENDANCE: Sellout (14,625 cap.)
Minnesota Head Coach Richard Pitino
“It was certainly a great win for us. I thought we played tremendous defense. Elliott Eliason obviously impacted the game in so many ways. He was huge for us. We finally started to go inside, and it was big for our basketball players. It was a great win. We’ve got to certainly learn from our mistakes and continue to get better.”
On the play of Elliott Eliason, who was named a team captain on Wednesday...
“He’s playing very confident. …He’s playing well. He deserves it. He has gotten so much better, and he deserves all the credit because he’s worked so hard. He impacted the game tonight.”
On the importance of post play against Ohio State...
“I thought they’re such a great perimeter defensive team that I knew we weren’t going to be able to rely on the three-point shot so much. We had to go inside, and it was huge. Mo [Walker] came off the bench and did a lot of great things. Even Oto [Osenieks] in the post, he was big for us. We like to shoot the three, but we can’t rely on that too much.”
On making big shots near the end of the game...
“DeAndre Mathieu. Andre [Hollins] made some big-time shots. I thought we finally found a way to win. …We found a way to get the win without making too many mistakes down the stretch.”
Junior Guard DeAndre Mathieu
On maintaining the lead …
"Coach tells us all the time to just keep pushing regardless of scores.”
On finishing the game strong …
“We have had some close games against Big 10 teams this year. We talked to each other during the halftime that we are going to finish it this time. This time we had to finish it to let Michigan know that we can finish the game really good too.”
Junior Guard Andre Hollins
On having trouble scoring in the first half…
"That’s what kind of team we are. We did not score enough in the first half, but later we executed well, we defended, and rebounded well.”
On making the crucial three-pointer of the day…
"DeAndre got in the lane like always, I relocated it, and I shot it as we practiced all the time.”
On maintaining the lead from the push back…
"It shows the growth of our team, we executed this time.”
Junior Center Elliott Eliason
On significance of the win tonight…
"We lost one on the road, and we needed a bounce back as a team. You know they were really hungry as they came off from two tough losses as well. So we were prepared to play with these hungry and talented players.”
On being named a captain…
"It actually means a lot to me, I didn’t expect it, but coach Pitino gave me this honor, and I tried to give out the best I can do tonight.”
Ohio State Head Coach Thad Matta
“We did a good job defensively. We turned them over and we were where we needed to be. I thought offensively we got the shots we wanted, but they were not going down. I am still trying to get a grip on the turnovers we had to start the second half. I kept trying to get a score to allow me to call a timeout and it never happened.”
On if Aaron Craft and Shannon Scott are pressing to get the team better shots...
“Probably. We are over-penetrating. We are talking, showing, and getting in too deep. I will take aggressive errors, but there needs to be some type of logic to them.”
On how the offense is different without DeShaun Thomas…
“It is completely different the last three games. I think it is more that we are just not thinking the game the way it needs to be thought. We need to look at situations and ask ‘what we need to do here?’ We had three days of preparations for this game and we worked on very specific things. We did not shoot the shots that we practice, and I think that is more mental than physical.”
Pitino, Mason Add NABC Honors
Gophers pick up coach of the year and second-team All-District 7 honors Wednesday.
Washington Named Mr. New York Basketball
Incoming Gophers point guard was selected the top high school player in the Empire State this season.
Gophers Fall to MTSU in NCAA First Round, 81-72
Amir Coffey had 17 points to lead Minnesota, while Dupree McBrayer added 16.