Georgia Tech Post-Game Quotes (Game 7)

Dec. 3, 2017

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GEORGIA TECH HEAD COACH Josh Pastner

Opening statement:

“Proud of our guys. Proud of them for their fight. They responded well from obviously a disappointing loss on Friday. Tennessee is really good and very well coached. They’re tough and very physical; they’re older. They’re a very good team and they’re going to win a lot of games in SEC play. They’re for sure a top-20 team in the country, I don’t think there’s any denying that. We’ve struggled scoring-wise and just haven’t been able to get over the hump in some key times. When you’re missing Josh Okogie, that’s 18 points a game. It’s hard, especially when teams are pressuring you and you need that one guy who can take guys off the bounce.”

On not getting over the hump and being able to take the lead:

“We had multiple times [to take the lead], that one when it was 41-40 and Lamonte Turner hit that big three – Tadric [Jackson] actually played really good defense, hand in his face. We had some other times where we just couldn’t tie it and could not get over the hump. We missed some layups and some key free throws.”

On a more active Ben Lammers tonight:

“Since Nov. 19, today is Dec. 3, Ben [Lammers] has been on the floor six times: Bethune-Cookman all the way through this game, Tennessee, he’s been on the floor six times and that’s only on gamedays. So, you’re talking about from Nov. 19 to Dec. 3, he’s practiced six times, which have actually been games. Every other time, he’s been on the sideline getting treatment. It’s very hard for a guy, and I play him 40 minutes, it’s hard for a guy to do what he needs to do and what we need him to do when you’ve literally been on the floor six times since Nov. 19. He’s out of rhythm, he’s out of sync and he’s not in a flow. He’s not able to do what he needs to do offensively, like what he did against UCLA, he hasn’t been able to do that since. And it’s just because he hasn’t practiced and he’s favoring a bad ankle.”

On Tennessee’s aggressive defense and only shooting 39 percent:

“They really got after us and got underneath us. That’s what I was saying, having a guy like Josh Okogie who can break you down to be able to make plays off the bounce. That’s been something that we’ve been missing.”

On turning around and playing the first real road game on Wednesday at Wofford:

“If you’re fortunate to be able to win the game, it’s one heck of a win. … It’s going to be a hard game; it’s going to be a really hard game. If we’re fortunate to win, it’ll be one heck of a win.”



TENNESSEE HEAD COACH RICK BARNES

Opening statement:

“We found a way to win with the foul trouble we had to work through. It was the first time all year with Admiral [Schofield] and Grant [Williams] being in foul trouble. I think Lamonte [Turner’s] experience was really huge. He had that look where I thought he had great command of himself and what we needed to get done. A big play was when the fans got into it and they cut it to one and we were really trying to shorten the game. Then Lamonte raised up and hit that shot right inside the three. I thought it was a really a big play in the game. When you’re trying to build on the road and learn to win on the road, you’re going to need some players make plays. Then down the stretch we did a great job as a team making free throws.”

On winning a close game:

“Most of the time we’re going to play through our post guys and we did. We ran our motion and we actually took it all the way through a couple times. I think Admiral [Schofield] got fouled twice. When he popped to the corner and hit a three that was a big play. Lamonte [Turner] had that look about him too where I knew at the end that he’d go make a play. It got to a point in the game where we were really playing through our guards. We worked on some zone this week more so that we have it, but we weren’t very good in it. We didn’t make the adjustments tonight that we needed to. At the end we were fouling so much that we were just trying to keep them from driving. They were just putting their head down and driving so we just went zone. We actually got a couple stops and then we came down and were able to score from the free throw line. We finished it in ways a year ago that we didn’t. We’d let those get away.”

On Kyle Alexander playing against Ben Lammers:

“When Kyle’s rebounding and doing what he does he’s very much underrated and underappreciated with outside people. We all know what he can mean to us. He has to do the dirty work for us. I thought he did a good job. That last foul was a tough one, but he did what we needed him to do. At the end of the first half, we got it going defensively although I never thought we were really as smooth as we wanted to be on offense. I got on Derrick [Walker] for that foul, but Jordan Bowden shouldn’t have gone for the steal either. That’s where we are still very immature - with a couple seconds on the clock and trying to make a great play instead of playing the game the way it should be played. Kyle is getting better for a guy that’s really only been playing for five years, he’s starting to show some consistency.”

On the a great 6-1 start to the season:

“Well I hope we have the best finish we’ve ever had too. It’s early still and we’ve played some quality teams. It’s actually the third ACC team we’ve played this year counting Clemson’s exhibition game, N.C. State and now Georgia Tech. Each one of those teams has given us a different look. They end up shooting 38 percent. We were much better defensively in the first half. We got back on our heels. We’ve still got a long way to go. We’ve been fortunate here early. Our guys have worked hard and they’ve deserved to have some good things happen. I mean I want people talking about us, but we’ve got a lot of work to do. I think our guys know that, where a year ago I’m not sure they knew that. Who we are right now, we can’t be that team. We’ve got to still get better and I think they know that, where as a year ago they’d think ‘we’re okay.’ They know we’ve got work to do.”