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Dec. 14, 2013

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Youngstown State at Pitt, Petersen Events Center, December 14, 2013

Pitt 91, Youngstown State 73


Quoting Pitt Head Coach Jamie Dixon:

Opening Statement:

“There were a lot of good things out there for us against a good team. They were 7-4 coming into this one and had beaten some good teams on neutral courts, so we knew their guys were going to keep playing. I thought we passed the ball really well given our 22 assists, and obviously the rebounding numbers were in our favor in a big way. We got 25 rebounds from our five-spot (center) and another 10 from the four spot (power forward), and that is three new guys and a senior so that was great. You know, they scored 73 points which is pretty disappointing to me, but they kept playing and (Kendrick) Perry got a lot at the end. He was going to keep going and I wish we would defend better with 20 to 25 point leads but that is difficult. The offense was good even though we didn’t make shots early. We got the lay-ups and free throws we wanted, we crashed the boards well, but we have to play better defensively. I’ve been saying that for a long time, we know where our breakdowns are and we need to work on them. That’s a good team and Perry is a good player. I anticipate them being at the top of their league this season.”

On the rebounding advantage in the game:

“Interestingly, they (Youngstown State) play a smaller line-up, but they are still plus-three or four on the season. Our goal was to out-rebound them by 15 or more and we did surpass that by a big margin so that was good. Their guards are young but their big guys are somewhat younger so we thought we could work against them. Jamel (Artis) and Mike (Young) are really starting to settle in and Mike really just has a nose for the ball.”

On defending with a 20-plus point lead:

“That is a big challenge for us. You know, we’re always looking for things to improve on and right now we don’t defend well with a big lead. It’s hard when you are up 25 and you’re hammering your guys to get up and defend, it is tough. In the second half I thought we did a good job of stretching out and locking down guys. They made a push at the end, but we know that it is hard to continue to play that well defensively with a 20-plus point lead. To come out in the second half and play the way we did offensively and defensively, that was good. We have to get better defensively with our young guys; it is a mentality and understanding. I don’t care if we win by 26, we can’t just allow people to score.”


Quoting Pitt guard James Robinson:

On defending Kendrick Perry:

“I think we knew he was a good scorer. We remember him from summer league so we knew what he could do. Obviously, we knew he was going to be aggressive the whole game. We didn’t even do that good of a job on him, but we were fortunate enough to come out with the win.”

On playing three great guards in as many games:

“It is more of a team challenge, but obviously the guards look at it a little more personally. As a team we need to get better at defending. We have Cincinnati coming up with good, physical guards and versatile wing players, so it is going to continue to be a challenge for us.”


Quoting Pitt guard Josh Newkirk:

On defending the rest of the team effectively:

“Basically we just want to play good help and team defense. Obviously we want to stop their top scorer too but if he gets his, you have to make sure the other players stay under their averages. That’s the most important thing for us as a team defensively”


Quoting Pitt forward Michael Young:

On getting used to the college game:

“I feel like me, Josh (Newkirk) and Jamel (Artis) are settling in well. Both in games and practices, I feel like we are getting more used to the game. Both in practices and games I feel like we are really starting to come along. We try to get better every day and still have a lot to improve on. When you have guys like James (Robinson), Talib (Zanna) and Lamar (Patterson) who are pushing you every day, you have no choice but to get better. You have to come to practice with an open mind and when you do that it gives you a lot of opportunity to get better.”

On playing first game at Madison Square Garden this coming week:

“For us freshman, we played a game at the Barclays Center (Brooklyn, N.Y.) which was a big stage for the first time. Playing Texas Tech and Stanford who are good teams was big for us freshman. I think that will give us a little confidence for the Cincinnati game that we have on Tuesday, which is at the (Madison Square) Garden.”

On the rebounding margin:

“Our goal is plus-20 on the boards for every game. When you go into every game with that mentality, it doesn’t matter who your opponent is. Just come into the game and want to achieve your goals and usually it shows at the end of the game on the margin.”     


Quoting Youngstown State Head Coach Jerry Slocum

Opening statement:

“I thought they played great. Difference was on the glass. They had 20 offensive rebounds. We couldn’t handle their strength and physicality. I think it’s one of the better shooting Pitt teams that I’ve seen. I’ve been around the area a long time. They share the ball well.”

On the lessons to carry to the next game

“Anytime you have a basketball game, you learn from your mistakes. We made enough of them to learn from them. We have to do a much better job on the glass. That’s a team that just manhandled us down there.”

On Pitt’s strengths:

“There are a couple things they do well every year that Coach Dixon has been their coach. Physicality of defense and rebounding the basketball is what they do well. I think one of the things they have done better this year than maybe any Pitt team that I’ve seen is how well they just shoot the basketball.”


Quoting Youngstown State guard Kendrick Perry

On his performance:

“First, I have to make some more free throws. I definitely have to get in the gym and work on that. As I look at the sheet, [I see] I had two unforced turnovers I think led to some easy points for them. Other than that, I was pretty satisfied. I have to shoot the ball better from the three line. Overall, I think I did alright.”

On playing an ACC team:

“It was a great challenge for us. Pitt is a very good team. Very well-coached team. It has some really good talent on their team. We look forward to the opportunity and challenge and try to get better every step of the way.”

Post-Game Quotesheet

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