Chattanooga Mocs Basketball Postgame Quotes
Chattanooga vs. The Citadel
The McKenzie Arena - Chattanooga, Tenn.
Thursday - Feb. 7, 2013
Chattanooga Head Coach John Shulman
Thoughts on game
"These guys have been through a lot. Last time we were in here we played Western Carolina and Dontay had a broken hand. It seems like one thing after another. The goal was to come out and pretend that we were down 10 the whole game. Drazen did a great job getting us off to a start to setup our defense, and you got to score to setup your defense. I'm proud of our kids. We've been through a lot now. We played two home games in January. That's not fair to ask a team to do that, especially a bunch of young guys. But we hung in there, and hopefully we can take advantage of it now."
Thoughts on effectiveness of 1-2-2 early on
"It was really effective. It got us going. That was the first time we've led in a game in probably the month of January. So it got us going. We talked about that's what we were going to do. It's not as effective when Rico is at the top, at the three. It's more effective when you got a Lance Stokes up there, Marty's up there. Casey Jones was up there early in the season, and that's when it's pretty effective. Lance got pretty comfortable in there, and I thought it got us off to a good start."
Thoughts on five guys in double figures
"Well, it's a big deal that we were able to score it easier tonight than having a manufactured basket after basket after basket. We had 44 points at half. We scored 57 the other night at Georgia Southern. And Citadel beat Georgia Southern by 15 at Georgia Southern. So go figure. That's why you just got to show up every single night and play. Our kids went out to play the game with the right mentality, and we're going to keep that mentality until they make us pack our uniforms up. Our kids were in a good frame of mind, and they're going to continue to be in a good frame of mind. We're going to care for them. We're going to love them. We're going to coach them, but we're going to love them. They've been through a lot."
Thoughts on Z. Mason only playing two minutes in a 44 point half
"It's crazy, but we got some easy baskets off our pressure and off our press. We were able to score in transition. I was worried about it, but then Drazen did a fantastic job early. Drazen did a great job scoring the ball. Gee did a good job scoring the ball. I was hoping they couldn't guard us in man. Then they went to the zone, and we did a good enough job. We were 4-for-7 from the three-point line in the first half. That makes things a little easier. Go 1-for-13 and see how easy it is to win a game. That's what we've been doing, and coming close. I told them the other day that we were about five plays away from being 6-3 in the league. I still keep the dream alive. I still do, but that's who I am. Maybe I'm crazy."
Thoughts on handling the end of the game situation
"We did okay. I would say from the 4:10 mark down we were pretty good handling the situation. We were pretty good. Z. gave up an offensive rebound, and I wasn't greatly pleased with that. You're going to have that situation, but we did a good job making free throws and handling the pressure."
Thoughts on Drazen's play against The Citadel
"Maybe they don't dig a lot, and they don't double a whole lot. So he's free to go play. I told him with the moves you made tonight, you can do that against everybody. He went out there in a good frame of mind. He's got a lot of confidence now. He feels good about himself now. When you feel good about yourself, I guess you can play the game easier, freer. We haven't been real free playing a game."
Z. Mason, junior, forward
Thoughts on his early foul trouble
"It was awful. I just wanted to play so bad. I had to sit there basically the whole first half and watch. It was no fun. It was definitely a learning tool."
Thoughts on running the 1-2-2 defense
"I felt like we disturbed them a lot. That was what Coach Shulman wanted our identity to be from the get-go. He wanted us to press them and slow them down. It helped slow the game down for us and speed it up for them. It helped us out on defense tonight."
On playing looser than normal
"Yes, you could definitely tell that the guys were playing a lot more free and loose. We tried to just focus in on just having fun and just executing on both offense and defense. We wanted to stay focused on working on what we practiced all week."
Ronrico White, guard, sophomore
On handling The Citadel cutting the lead in the first half
"It's all about being persistent. We knew going into the game that no matter what the score was that they were going to fight back. I just wanted to make a play for my team and for us to be victorious tonight."
Thoughts on not playing from behind this game\
"It felt really good. We just stayed aggressive the whole game. We really had it in our minds that we were down 10 from the beginning of the game and it really showed tonight."
Thoughts on Z. Mason being in foul trouble
"We can't worry about Z being in foul trouble. I mean, yes, we need Z because he is a very good player. We just have to keep playing and increase the lead even when he isn't out there."
Thoughts on game
"Defense wins on the road. We didn't play it tonight. We weren't very good at it. We played it, but we weren't very good at it. I'm disappointed."
Thoughts on Chattanooga's 1-2-2 early on
"It bothered us. It wasn't like we knew they weren't going to do it. They've played it in games before. We worked on it for three days but didn't handle it the way we needed to. I don't think that really cost us the game, although it was a factor. Sixteen turnovers and 22 points off of turnovers. It's just way too many. You're going to have to play great half-court defense in order to overcome something like that. So the combination of the two, we just never had a chance. Ten points isn't a big deficit, but we can never get under it because we get stopped and keep turning the ball over. Our guys shot the ball well. We shot 53%, scored 76 points, but you don't win on the road with offense. You win with defense. Our guys did not play the way they are capable of playing defensively tonight. That's something we're going to have to get ready for."
Thoughts on defense being a mentality
"Yes, certainly it is. It's how you show up to the gym and how you approach each game. Certainly other teams have a factor on it, and I'll give Chattanooga some credit tonight. I mean, they played well. They made shots. We went to our 2-3 zone. Z. Mason made shots at the elbow. Those are tough shots. Those aren't easy shots. I know he made them look easy, but those are tough shots. He made those and that hurt us. Their post, Drazen, got low post touches, and got some tough shots over the top of our defenders. I give them credit, but I still think we could have done a better job."