Nov. 17, 2010
Box Score |
Memphis 94 vs. Northwestern State 79
Nov. 17, 2010
Memphis Head Coach Josh Pastner
I was a little frustrated because of our play tonight. We were lull with the effort we needed, and early on we missed some point blank layups, missed free throws and had several silly plays. We were very undisciplined, and I don't like that because I like discipline.
I knew that when we had a team like this down, you have to put them down and not allow them to hang around. I was getting frustrated with that because I realize that you can't let them hang around or they will come back because they had good players and good athletes.
That was what happened, but with that being said, Will Barton saved us without a question off the bench offensively. Tarik Black saved us as well. Wesley Witherspoon saved us too. Chris Crawford's defense on Will Pratt, who kicked our butt all night long, but when we put him on him, he shut him down and did a great job. The last thing that saved us was our free throw shooting. We were 29-of-35 for 83 percent from the free throw line, so I am proud of our guys on that.
We had too many turnovers. We won the board battle, but we gave up 15 offensive rebounds. We had 19 turnovers. Nineteen plus 15, I have my masters and that is 34, which means we gave up 34 possessions. A lot of the 19 turnovers we had were unforced, just silly, unsound plays we have to clean up. We have to go back to the drawing board in fast break opportunities in converting and taking care of the ball. Bottom line though, we got the "W" and there is nothing better than getting "W's."
Talk about the growing pains the team is experiencing.
We are 3-0, and I understand there are going to be growing pains. I understand that each game is very important. I do understand the growing pains and that is what I keep telling the fans that they are going to have to be patient. We are not perfect right now, and we have a long way to go. We have to continue to get better and continue to work on those things we have to work on.
So, fans please be patient with this team. It is not an easy task. We are subbing guys in and out right now, and we are trying to get that set rotation. There is just a lot going on right now because we have to get tightened up and take care of the small things. Biggest thing is the turnovers and quit giving away the simple plays. Bottom line for the fans, we are 3-0. Let me tell you this, the fans--all 16,215--were
great once again.
Northwestern State Head Coach Mike McConathy
What energized your team in the second half?
In the first half they had 11 offensive rebounds and we had three defensive rebounds, and so we came out and did a good job of rebounding their missed shots. We rebounded and (Will) Pratt was exceptional during that time, he just did a good job. We were able to put a few points on the board and get a little enthusiasm. (In the second half) We backed off and did something differently on their guards, and I think that helped us until the end of the game when they just overpowered us. But I think our kids made a great adjustment getting back because in the first half all they (Memphis) did was take us off the dribble and beat us to the goal. I thought the kids bought into our intensity and that is why we came out with a good run at the beginning (of the second half). We made some adjustments and they (Memphis) had to adjust back to us and that is important for us to do because that is something that we haven't been able to do very well the past two years. Offensively we still have a long way to go in that respect.
How did you feel your team handled Memphis' pressure?
I felt like we did a good job, but the reason we got in trouble was because we picked up the ball, lowered our head and dug our head in the sand so we couldn't see anybody. Everybody was standing back and not popping to the ball. The game was physical but our guys have to match that physical play, which we did, but we just got too hands on.
Was tonight a moral victory for your team?
You just need to learn that if you play hard good things are going to happen. Now when we start playing hard and smart, this can be a pretty good basketball team, because Memphis was still playing. We were doing some good things. They are a talented, talented team and we were playing right with them because we were playing hard and we played a little bit smarter. But when we play hard and smart maybe we won't be talking about moral victories, maybe we will be talking about victories.
About the play of center William Mosley.
You know nobody thinks Will Mosley can play in our conference, but from everything I see he is a pretty good player. He is playing with some of the best in the country and he is blocking shots. He just did a great job, and when you have that it helps you defensively. Years ago we had Dee Fisher that was second in the country with about four blocks a game. With Will Mosley we have the same kind of situation, so we are excited about him but you know he got in foul trouble (in the first half). He came and played like a man in the second half though.