Post-Game Quotes

Jan. 21, 2017

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Georgia Tech Head Coach Josh Pastner

 

Opening statement:

“First of all, Virginia is a very, very good basketball team. Coach Bennett and his staff do a high-level job in all areas, so you want to give them a lot of credit. For our guys, they gave me every ounce of energy they have. We are a team that has gotten a lot better. We’ve been fighting every game. We’ve improved and come a long way. When I got the job, the athletic director at the time told me we wouldn’t win a game in the first year in the ACC, and in your first two years you win a total of 20 games. He said that’s what the rebuild is going to be. It’s going to take you a lot of time. We’re hitting the reset button. We still have a long way to go, but we’ve improved as a team.”

 

On defending London Perrantes and Georgia Tech’s three-point defense:

“I thought we did a good job, because we know how good he is, and we tried to take him out of it. We held them [Virginia] to 22 percent shooting from three. They came in shooting first in the ACC, 40 percent from three-point range. We’re first in the ACC in field-goal percentage defense, so we’ve been good defensively. Perrantes is excellent. If he’s not the best guard in the league, he’s one of the very best. He’s very good.”

 

On Virginia’s run to close the first half:

“I think they [Virginia] got an offensive rebound in that section. They were up 29-28. We were right there. They’re a really good team, and we’ve been good all year answering runs. We didn’t answer that one. The bottom line is, we’ve been good at answering runs, but we didn’t answer on that one. Virginia, like I said, they’re an excellent basketball team, one that can make a very deep run in the NCAA tournament. We’ve got to be able to score the ball, and we missed a lot of layups. It’s been a point of contention for us. We’ve got to continue to get better at it, work at it, and hope we put the ball in the basket in those situations.”

 

On the play of Marial Shayok:
“He’s really good. I think he’ll play in the NBA. I think he’ll get a look in the NBA. I don’t say that loosely. I’m very careful to say that because it’s very hard to play in the NBA. It’s nearly impossible. But he’ll have a look. He’s a good player. He reminds me of the guys that Tony [Bennett] had a couple years ago like Joe Harris. He’s different but that type of level. He’s really good. He’s going to have a chance to play at the next level. He’s a good player.”

 

Virginia Head Coach Tony Bennett

 

On Jack Salt’s defensive performance today:

“There were some great stat lines, but I don’t think there were any better than the way Jack impacted the game. Statistically, he had six rebounds and played 35 minutes. Ben Lammers is a good player and he made him earn everything. He played with his hands free, he fought his position and showed his strength, and that was impressive. I love seeing that, and it was a huge key for us in the game because that guy can score and make some big plays.”

 

On Marial Shayok’s confidence:

“I just think he has started playing better. We have gone to a more physical lineup and he has played well. I think it started at Pitt. He has always shown good stretches, but I think he is getting more comfortable and establishing his spot. Maybe starting unlocked everything and now he is good, I do not know. You would have to ask him. I liked his ability to play off the bounce and score and work hard. Georgia Tech throws different actions at you. We saw a 1-3-1, a box-and-1 and a diamond-and-1. We saw a match-up zone and some man-to-man, and some press. It is a lot and it is why it has kept some people off balance. That is why having a guy like Marial who can bounce up and make a shot is so important, which is why I am so happy to see him playing at this level and we will need it to continue because he is a hard worker.”

 

On handling Georgia Tech’s defense:

“I think we made four threes early, and then you look at that 5-and-22 [3-point shooting] and most of those were wide open rhythm shots that you have to take. That is a lot of threes, but in our base offense when they are in a triangle-and-2 or a box-and-1, it has worked well, and we were getting the looks. I was confident in that, but we just were not knocking down the shots. We started off hot really early, and we fell in love a little bit with the three after that.  We turned it over at some inopportune times, but we had to keep playing because that is what Georgia Tech does. Josh [Pastner] has done a nice job with that group with their Princeton kind of offense and mixing up the defenses.”

 

On London Perrantes’ milestone accomplishment:

“That guy has been a part of a lot of winning. That is impressive. His completeness and his steadiness have been so good. You saw that in him from his first year here, and that is no small thing. For a guy who is so unselfish to score that many- 1000 points, 500 assists- I like that. We are going to keep twisting the knife on those turnovers; I don’t know if he is going for that [record as well]. That is uncharacteristic of him. He is such a key to this team, and he makes big shots. What three-and-a-half years that he has had.”