Nov. 12, 2013
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Minnesota (2-0) 84, Montana (0-1) 58
Williams Arena - Minneapolis, Minn.
Minnesota Head Coach Richard Pitino
“I was really happy with our guys performance tonight because I have a lot of respect for Montana as a program. That is a coach who has been to three tournaments in the last four years. He has built a culture of winning and had three starters back. We were really concerned coming in and I thought our guys did a great job of handling their business and being very professional.”
On shooting and defense...
“I did not think we shot well in the first half at 38 percent. To come back and shot 52 percent in the second half is pretty good. A lot of that had to due with not having a post presence because we had guys in foul trouble. We were probably taking too many jump shots. I thought our defense was probably better than what the numbers showed because towards the end of the game we gave up a couple of easy baskets."
On rebounding effort...
“Obviously plus-16 on the glass would be great. Austin Hollins did a great job rebounding the ball. I thought Oto (Osenieks) really worked hard to get rebounds. In order for us to make up for not having Mo Walker everyone needs to chip away and do that.”
On Andre Hollin’s role tonight at the one and two position...
“He looked pretty good tonight. I want to play him at both. When DeAndre (Mathieu) is playing well, like he is doing, (Andre Hollins) is a great option on the perimeter.”
On Mathieu’s integration to the team...
“It's really good for a kid who played junior college, but has never really played in this environment. He understands everything that we say and brings it everyday in practice. He is a great kid. I think he has been phenomenal. He puts pressure on the defense. I think he does that better than anyone on our team.”
Andre Hollins (Jr./G)
On what has worked best for the offense so far this season...
"Defense. Defense has always been a key for me in order to get going on offense -- being able to get loose on defense and stop your man from scoring. It's like a game to me. You don't want your man to score. It really helps my mentality offensively."
On playing in the backcourt with Austin Hollins and DeAndre Mathieu...
"It's definitely fun. It's definitely made me a better defender having to guard (Mathieu) in practice. As Mathieu gets in the lane, it really opens up the outside shot for me. It's a lot of fun. I think we're a very good backcourt."
Austin Hollins (Sr./G)
On what was different today than last week with rebounding…
“We were just crashing the boards hard. There were times in the past when we weren’t boxing out and we were trying to go get the ball when the other team was trying to go get the ball, too, so you’ve got to box out. It’s all mindset, so I think we were really aware that we needed to get on the boards, and we knew that if we beat them on the boards, we would have a better shot of beating them.”
On guarding the three-point shot…
“It’s just something that we worked on. We scouted them really well. ...It’s something that we’ve been talking about all week. It’s really about communication on defense. It’s about communicating with each other, switching when we need to switch, staying with our men and knowing the personnel. I think we did a good job knowing the personnel tonight.”
On improvements from last season...
“I think we have a lot more shooters this year, as well. With this style of offense up and down it’s hard to guard. We’ve got guys who can get to the hoop, and we’ve got guy who can knock down threes, so it’s really tough.”
On Montana's zone defense…
“We saw a little zone here and there. I think that we made a couple of buckets while they were in zone, so that took them out of it.”
On the defensive key to shutting down Kareem Jamar…
“It was just a team effort. Whoever was on him at the time, you know he really liked to post up, so we wanted to keep a man in front of him at all times, get a hand in his face when he was shooting, playing solid D on the post when he was posting up. It’s something we have been going over all week. We knew the kind of player that he was, so we went out and did our best job on him.”