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Clemson vs. Virginia Postgame Coaches’ Quotes

Feb. 14, 2012

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Clemson Head Coach Brad Brownell

Overall thoughts: “It was a great team win tonight. I thought our guys really competed. Virginia is so fundamentally sound and in good position, so your effort has to be supreme. I challenged our guys at halftime that we couldn’t let this opportunity get away from us. We were in position to beat this team tonight, and we needed to take advantage of it. I thought our guys came out very spirited and played very well.”

On using his deep bench to his advantage: “I thought we did a good job offensively of making them play defense. We wanted to try to wear them down. They don’t play as many guys as some people. Obviously Harris’ hand was bothering him a little bit, so we felt like this was a game where we could wear them down a little bit. I thought that on both ends of the court, we needed to push them.”

On the play of Devin Coleman: “He’s starting to do some things in games now that we’ve seen in practice. He has a good ability to move off screens in our offense. It’s taken him a while to figure things out on both ends of the court in terms of how we want to play. He just needed a couple of shots to go down to take the pressure off.”

On building on the lead late in the game: “I thought the key was our second half defense. There were some opportunities for them to make a little run. There were some shots they missed. But by and large, we didn’t give them very many easy baskets. They had to go earn them.”

On any differences in defending Mike Scott from the first game: “Nothing drastic, other than just having a little better feel for how good he is. Our guys understand when you play against a guy, as opposed to you telling them he is a good player. When you go up against a guy and you know he’s a good player after playing him, you know you’d better compete and be ready or you’ll get embarrassed. I thought our guys at least did a better job.”

Virginia Head Coach Tony Bennett

Overall Thoughts: “When you’re in a game that’s lower scoring, possessions really matter. Whether it’s a turnover on our end or we make a defensive mistake, those possessions hurt and sting. If you look at the stat sheet, the tell-tale numbers are the 18 turnovers, especially in a game with this few possessions. That’s 18 times we don’t get a chance to get a shot. We shot 50%, but our three-point shooting was poor. Without Joe [Harris] we’re not as much of a threat from three. Those missed shots and turnovers are really crucial in a game like this.”

On three straight possessions with turnovers: “They made a couple of good plays, but we were just being careless. We tried to feed the post and we just didn’t value the ball. Some of it was also just active defense by Clemson.”

On Sammy Zeglinski’s lack of scoring opportunities in the second half: “He didn’t pass up many open shots, they just played pretty good defense on him. He had a hard time getting by the guys they were playing on him. He also tried to be a team guy. A lot of times when your shot is struggling, you look to make the next pass.”

On Clemson’s defense against Mike Scott: “We shot the ball better at Virginia. We stretched it out that way, especially from three. They also didn’t have [Milton] Jennings that game. He’s a long, athletic defender. They had to guard Mike [Scott] with [Catalin] Baciu and other guys, which allowed Mike to move away from the basket and get some looks that way, and it also allowed him to get inside because they had to be mindful of our outside shooting. Also, our turnovers took away five or six opportunities for him to get shots off.”

On Devin Booker’s play in the second half: “He took advantage of us getting worn down as the game went on. He ducked in hard on the inside and his physicality showed. He played like a man out there.”