Dec. 10, 2013
Minnesota (9-2) 75, South Dakota State (4-7) 59
Williams Arena - Minneapolis, Minn.
Minnesota Head Coach Richard Pitino
“It was a good win for us. I thought South Dakota State played really well in the first half. We did a lot of good things tonight. I do not know if we got better against New Orleans, but I do think we got much better today. We did a lot of little things. We battled on the glass. Austin Hollins was phenomenal with 14 rebounds. Elliott (Eliason) was really good on the glass. Our offense is ahead of our defense. We are playing at a good pace and handling the ball well. We are good defensively right now. We have to get great.”
On what needs to be improved defensively...
“I do not think anyone is really weak. I just think we need to get better technique-wise. I think our scouting has to get better. I think our zone has to get better. We gave up a couple of threes at the end of the game that we do not like to give up. I think we are good, I just don’t think we are great.”
On Austin Hollins’ rebounding...
“I love Oto (Osenieks) and Joey (King). They are good guys and they try really hard. They are not naturally gifted rebounders, but they bring a lot of value to our team. We talked as a team about looking ourselves in the mirror and making up for our weaknesses. Austin (Hollins) is one of those guys who we said would have to get us seven or eight rebounds a game. He has been tremendous on the glass.”
On Austin Hollins’ game tonight...
“He was awesome. I thought he was so good tonight. He had no turnovers and he was athletic. I do not think Austin Hollins gets enough respect, and that is no disrespect to anyone else on our team. I think when people think about the face of the program they say it is Andre Hollins, but I think we have two faces and that is Andre and Austin Hollins. We are going to go as far as they take us. Austin Hollins is a tremendous player, and he is such an easy player to coach, it is almost disturbing.”
DeAndre Mathieu (Jr.G)
On improved shooting as the game went on:
“Coach Pitino kept telling us to shoot the ball, and while we were taking good looks in the first half, they just were not falling in. We kept trying, and it paid off in the second half.”
On Austin Hollins’ energy in the game tonight:
“We came into the game with high energy and excited, and Hollins is a hot shooter, so we are used it that now.”
On Austin Hollins’ rebounding:
"Each day Coach Pitnio challenges us to grow and improve, and I knew Austin would bring his all to the game, as he does each game.”
On the slow start to the game:
DM: “In order to stay as a team, we stick together and keep shooting and running the plays that we have practiced already so many times. We keep our energy level to ourselves so that we always have that to fall back on and motivate each other.”
Austin Hollins (Sr./G)
On reaching the 1,000-point mark:
“It was great, and I knew this was at stake, but I was more focused with the team on the fact that SDSU is a good team, so we had to go out there and take care of our business.”
On how much it meant to score 1,000 career points:
“It means a lot, as it’s my senior year and it has been a long journey to get to this point, but I could not be any happier to be here. I did know how close I was to the record before the game, but I did not know throughout the game, as I was not focused on just myself. ”
Minnesota holds off Vanderbilt in 56-52 win
Minnesota erased a 12-point first half deficit and hung on Saturday to defeat Vanderbilt 56-52.
Preview: Gophers vs. Vanderbilt
The Minnesota men's basketball team returns to Sioux Falls to face the Commodores on Saturday.
Pitino Blog: State of the Gophers
Coach Pitino breaks down the first seven games of the season and evaluates the team in his latest blog.