Postgame Quotes: West Virginia 79, St. John's 60

Feb. 6, 2010

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St. John’s Head Coach Norm Roberts
On today’s game:
“We did a good job in the first half; did not do as well in the second half obviously. We didn’t guard them and a great player in our league (Da’Sean Butler) really got hot. He got really hot and made some big shots that he wasn’t making in the first half. But we didn’t do a good job of piggy-backing screens and staying on him throughout the whole second half. And they beat us on the glass a little bit too.”

On West Virginia’s zone defense:
“We knew they were going to play the zone. It’s not something you can really simulate in practice because of their length… They’re long and they get in gaps. But what we needed to do was get in gaps and flash, which we did a couple of times and made some plays. But we didn’t do it enough. The zone slows down the game, so when you’re not getting stops on the other end; that compounds it and that’s why you can’t get out and run. In the first half, it was all man-to-man, so we were able to get out and run and attack. We weren’t able to do that in the second half.”

On team’s second-half play:
“It’s defense. We’ve got to stop them. We did that in the first half. In the second half we didn’t pressure the basketball as much as we needed to on the wings. We allowed them to get into their cutting offense, which allows them to get layups. In the first half we pressured them and we didn’t let them see those cuts. I told our guys, ‘We focused (well) for 28 minutes, but it’s a 40-minute game. We can’t play 28 minutes, not in this league. You’ve got to play a full 40.’ And we didn’t do that tonight.”

On team’s mindset:
“They’ve got to be tough. Things don’t always go your way and you’ve got to fight through that. And that’s what I told them today. I told them not to sulk over it. We know what we didn’t do. We’ll show you again what we didn’t do and how we didn’t execute. And let’s get better from here. In the first half, we made plays. When we drove it in there, we made plays. In the second half we didn’t do that as well. And we didn’t attack as well.”

On competition in the BIG EAST:
“Just fight and keep playing. There’s nothing else you can do. No one is going to give you a game. There are no easy games in this league no matter where you play, so you have to battle. And our guys know that. They knew that when they came to play in this league. They knew it would be a battle every single night.”

Freshman Guard Malik Stith
On today’s game:
“I think West Virginia is a very long team and they used that to their advantage. We just weren’t aggressive enough offensively. They just made plays.”

On the game’s tempo:
“We like to get out and run and they send a lot of people in for offensive rebounds. So whenever we get a rebound we like to take advantage and run… The tempo changed, it was a slow paced game in the second half. I think we have to try to keep the tempo up.”




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