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Feb. 2, 2014

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Virginia at No. 18 Pitt, Petersen Events Center, February 2, 2013

Virginia 48, Pitt 45


Quoting Pitt Head Coach Jamie Dixon:

Opening Statement:

“Congratulations to Virginia.  It wasn’t a good week for us; we simply didn’t get it done.  We shot 31% and were outrebounded, which are things we build our program on and simply didn’t get it done.  (Malcolm Brogdon) hit a good shot.  It was a deep shot, it was a deep three.  We could have guarded it better, but we didn’t.  And we give him credit.  He raised up and shot it from about 25 feet.  But I think down the stretch, and throughout the game, we’ve got to do a better job of executing offensively and defensively.  We talk about the little things.  This is a one possession game and we knew it would be a low possession game and teams would be taking guarded shots for most of the game, and that’s what it was.  I thought we did a pretty good job on (Joe) Harris, obviously he had a little bit of foul trouble, but (Malcolm) Brogdon hurt us and Lamar (Patterson) got into some foul trouble as well.  We have to play through that a little bit better. Talib (Zanna), obviously, wasn’t the same after the ankle, but we’ve got to have some other guys play.  We had some good performances by our freshman.  I thought Mike (Young) and Jamel (Artis) played well and are continuing to get better and improve.  I thought Josh (Newkirk) gave us good minutes and I thought Chris (Jones) did some good things too.  Four freshman played well and we just have to get out and get ready for Miami.  Any loss for us is disappointing and now we have three in conference and four overall, but we’ll stick with this.  We’ve got to get ready for our trip and get better offensively and defensively.  We have done it, but we are not to the level we need to be to beat a good team that makes a tough shot.”

On Talib Zanna’s ankle injury:

“We will see.  He seemed to be limping the entire time I was watching him play, but he said he was fine.  He certainly didn’t look as explosive.  It was hard to figure out if it was advantageous to have him in there or not.  We’ll obviously have the ankle checked out after the game and tomorrow.”

On getting drawn into Virginia’s game:

“I didn’t think so.  We had to get some stops and get some rebounds.  Early in the game we got out rebounded, so we didn’t get that many transition baskets.  They’re not going to turn the ball over; we didn’t turn the ball over.  You’re not going to get a lot of baskets in transition.  That’s pretty much a given in conference play against good teams.  We got some pretty good looks, if you give me our three versus their three that they hit, I would have our three.  That’s where it is.  I thought we had some pretty good looks.  Lamar (Patterson) had some good looks down the stretch.  The last time we did want to run some clock and get a good look, I thought we did.  You have to make some free throws down the stretch as well.  We have to finish some plays around the basket.  The biggest thing that stood out to me is that I don’t think we’re finishing well around the basket.  We’re getting in the lane and getting there.  Same thing last game, I haven’t seen the numbers yet for this game, but we’re not finishing well around the basket.  That’s something that I think is catching up to us.

On James Robinson’s look at three:

“That was a good look and he’s a good shooter.  That’s stepping into a three rather than drifting and fading away.  I think I would take that shot in a normal situation.  The layup that we had from Jamel (Artis) I liked too. 

On not being able to finish around the basket:

“I think it’s just something we have to get better at.  It’s something we’ve been working on, talking about, and trying to finish.  Sometimes maybe you have to pass if there is too much traffic and too many people around you.  It’s a combination of things, but we have to continue to improve in that area.  It’s something that we’ve been talking about and working on and hopefully we can do a better job.”

On difference in defense against Lamar Patterson:

“I think we’ve played two good defensive teams.  I think when you talk about Virginia you’re not going to score as many points given two really good defensive teams.  They’re going to work the clock and use the clock that will result in a low possession game.  Obviously, the numbers are going to be lower, just the number of times you’re going to have the ball.  We’re defending; we’re not going to give up any easy shots.  They’re defending; they’re not going to give up any easy shots.  (Lamar Patterson) got into some foul trouble today and that’s going to affect anybody’s game.  I think Harris was in the same situation.”

On the tough defensive play of the game and it coming down to a few shots:

“I don’t know that they’re easy shots, but they’re shots that you have got to knock down, or hope they knock down, when you get open.  There aren’t going to be a lot of early breakdowns and offensive possessions from both teams.  If you lose you have to look at it in a way that they did a better job of finishing it out, either finishing the play or the shot or executing and staying in their defensive philosophy for the entire possession.  It’s who makes the shot and feels really good about themselves and who doesn’t.  We simply were the team that didn’t make the shot.  But I don’t want to focus on that.  I want to focus on what we’re doing defensively and where we can improve.  We have to get better on the glass and we know that, we recognize that, and we’re trying to.  They’re trying hard and it doesn’t always come right away.  That’s what part of improving is.  You wish it happens overnight, but it doesn’t.  You just have to keep trying to improve.”


Quoting Pitt forward Jamel Artis:

On the last play of the game:

“They were trying to get a shot off, either 12 [Joe Harris] or 23 [London Perrantes]. I didn’t see what happened but they made the shot.”

On if he was fouled late in the game:

“No, I didn’t finish. You have to finish.”    

Quoting freshman forward Michael Young:

On the physicality of the game:

“They are very physical. [Mike] Toby, [Mitchell] Akil and [Anthony] Gill are all very physical. They were attacking the boards and boxing us out. We needed this win to bounce back after the loss against Duke to get us back where we needed to be. We were out rebounded and they were more physical than us.”

On Virginia cutting down turnovers in the second half:

“They were more careful with the ball. When they were turning it over, they were playing fast but we were playing good defense. They slowed down the game and were more careful with the ball in the second half.”

On missing an opportunity to beat Virginia:

“This was a missed opportunity. They are a good team. They were 7-1 coming into the game, second in our conference. We just didn’t come out ready to play. We started out the game slow. They ran their offense well. We never really kept the lead but once we did, they slowed down the game and we played at their pace. They were able to keep it close and get the shot that they wanted at the end of the game."

On the slow start:

“There is not one thing I can pinpoint. We have to come out ready to play. We started out slow against Duke and came out slow tonight. I don’t know if it is mental or warming up harder, but we definitely need to come out ready to play. When we don’t come out ready to play and have slow starts, we get bad results.”


Quoting Virginia head coach Tony Bennett


On being in a close game:

“It was a hard fought game, there wasn’t many easy looks out there. Each team felt like they had the chance to maybe separate, maybe get up 5 or 6 but then the other team would make a play. It was tight the entire game, we knew it was going to come down to a score or a stop. I was so proud of the defensive stand on the late play. It’s funny we run it a lot in practice, but we never make it in practice But I would rather make it the game than in practice. A lot of guys stepped up tonight.

On the final stretch of the game:

“It was about stops. We got some decent looks. London got a great look; Joe got a great look in that stretch. We had to get to the line and do things. I have the utmost respect for Coach Dixon and his program. Against a team that plays that sound of defense in the half court you can’t just expect to break them down after one pass. You need to rotate them, screen them, get good looks, and get on the glass. Similar to what they had to do to us. I thought it was a beautifully played game, as far as hard fought. Now I know the score was all everyone is excited about, but there weren’t a lot of easy looks. Sometimes you have to figure out how you’re going to have the best chance to win this game, to be able to play that way is important. But as far as two turnovers in the second half and holding in there defensively, that was important.”

On his team needing a statement win:

“This doesn’t make our season, this doesn’t break our season. We talked about this in the locker room before, dwell on what’s right and excellent. For us what is right and excellent in our play is transition defense. We couldn’t let the crowd get going, we couldn’t let Pitt get going. We know we would have a chance if we could do those things. We had to almost be air tight. We talked about being so sound, but doing it our way. Not worried about the outcome, but plugging along possession by possession.”

On Malcom Brogdon evolving into an offensive player:

“He is strong and gets to the lane. He has shown is completeness and has an ability to make big shots that are clutch at the line. You’ve seen that in him and he did it at a very important time. Textbook or not, I will take it.

On Malcom Brodgon spending time on Lamar Patterson:

“When you play a player as good as Patterson, you have to make him earn. He doesn’t get any free baskets. Twice, Malcom lost vision for a second and he made us pay. Otheriwse, they really marked him well. Malcom, primarily, made him earn, and I’m sure Lamar had a few shots he probably wanted back, but it wasn’t anything easy for anyone tonight.

On both teams being patient on offense in second half:

“What people don’t always understand is you’re playing so hard defensively, you’re moving as hard as you can, there is a fatigue factor going on. There is a saying that sometimes you really have to rest on offense. That is not always a bad thing because you’re laying everything out there. Instead of forcing, we rest a little bit on offense. You cannot pass up a great shot, but if it was to rest, I am okay with that. It was just one of those grinding games and after the first several minutes you could tell there was not going to be a lot of easy scoring or easy looks.

On importance of closing out of tight games:

“We just wanted to have a chance. I told the guys at halftime that I love this. This is where you want to be right here, right now. To score and stop, we will make them earn it and get a great look. You have to have some good fortune, I understand that. They could have gotten an offensive put back on that possession and you would have to come down. It is a fine margin of error either way, and fortunately we were on the right side.

On decision of Malcom being rested:

“I could tell guys were fatigued, and they were putting a lot out there. I wanted them to be fresh at the end. As long as the lead where it was or the game was tight, and get them those extra minutes of rest was significant.  You need it to chase around Patterson like he did most of the game, he expended a lot of energy.”


Quoting senior forward Akil Mitchell

On if he sees a rivalry in the future for Pitt and Virginia:

“We were talking the whole game about how much fun this was. It’s like playing ourselves. They lock up on defense. A lot of their defensive stuff is kind of the way we run it. It’s going to be a battle for the ages for the next couple of years.”

On this afternoon’s victory over Pitt being a “statement” win:

“We just heard (Pitt) has only lost 24 games here, ever. People want to call this a statement game. This was a big win. We’re just moving along in our conference and we’re just going to keep rolling. Like I’ve been saying all season, it is just one game at a time. I think if we stay focused, we’ll keep getting better.”

On playing a close game and coming out with a win:

“It’s absolutely necessary for us. I think we needed to be challenged like that. We needed to be tested. If there were anyone that was going to get us it would be (Pitt). They run their offense hard. They’re a good team. I know they’ve lost two in a row, but they’re a solid team and they’ll be good down the stretch.”


Quoting freshman guard London Perrantes

On assisting Malcolm Brogdon on the game-winner:

“We run it in practice almost every day. We never thought we’d run it because no one ever makes the shot. When Malcolm (Brogdon) came around and knocked it down, we were all like, “What? I guess the play does work!” We knew he was going to be given an open shot. He works so hard for moments like that.”

On defeating a ranked opponent on the road:

“It was a huge statement for us. We needed one of those because we haven’t gotten one all season. I feel like if we play the way we should, and the way we did, we can play with anyone at any time, anywhere. It was a big statement for us.”

On the atmosphere at the Petersen Events Center:

“It’s definitely a tough atmosphere. I feel like Duke is always going to be the craziest, but it was definitely tough for us.”


Quoting sophomore guard Malcolm Brogdon

On hitting the game-winning shot for Virginia:

“We actually didn’t run the play right. It wasn’t a triple-pop; we ran a quadruple-pop. We ran four screens instead of three. It’s basically a play for me to come up and shoot the three. We executed it really well. I haven’t hit it one time in practice all year. We’ve been practicing it all the time and I hit it today.”

On what his thoughts were at the sound of the final buzzer:

“We did it. We did it. We came here and beat a very, very good team in a really, really good game. I’m proud of my team and my coaches.”

Post-Game Quotesheet

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