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November 24, 2014

Eric Bovaird

Frankie Eteuati


Pittsburgh – 81
Chaminade – 68

THE MODERATOR:  We welcome Coach Bovaird, Lee Bailey, and Frankie Eteuati to the media room today.  We'll begin the press conference with an opening statement from Coach Bovaird, and then we'll take questions for the players.  Following that, we'll dismiss the players and take questions for the coach.  Coach, an opening statement on this afternoon's game?
COACH BOVAIRD:  Sure, our guys played hard.  We've been talking about it for a week that one of the main keys to the game is going to be boxing these guys out and preventing them from getting offensive rebounds.  It's a lot harder to do than it looks on film.
But we knew that coming in, and they were still able to take advantage.  They had 19 offensive rebounds in the first half.  And the one guy set a rebounding record tonight.  So other than that I feel like our guys can play with it, but that's one area we definitely struggled in.

Q.  Frankie, just what was it like going up against No. 2, Young, and also No. 11, Randall?
FRANKIE ETEUATI:  It was fun.  You don't often get a chance to play against strong guys like that and bang as much as you want.  As a team we kind of allowed ourselves to get out of position, and that kind of allowed them to get inside position.  So it was fun, but I should have done better.

Q.  Was it tough to rebound the zone?  Normally when you're playing man it's easier to box out.  Was it harder to box out being in the zone?
FRANKIE ETEUATI:  Not necessarily.  In the zone I kind of allowed myself to move into a bad position for the box out, so in a sense it was a little harder today to rebound in the zone.  However, ifs and buts, you know.  Who knows?
THE MODERATOR:  Questions for Coach.

Q.  Despite the December parity in rebounds, were you kind of happy with the way your team hung in there and hung around and kept it to 10, 12 points midway through the second half?
COACH BOVAIRD:  Yeah, I knew they'd never give up and they'd never quit.  Coming into this tournament we've got things we want to accomplish and work on and get better at.  Even though, no matter what the score is, we're going to keep focusing on trying to reach our goals of a Division II National Championship.  These are three great games in order to help prepare us to get to where our ultimate goal is.  But I knew our guys wouldn't quit.  No matter what the score is, they look forward to this challenge every year.

Q.  You got a lot of penetration and kick off of threes that were open.  You didn't make as many in the first half, but it seemed like in the second half you started to hit them and that kept you in the game.  Was that your game or something you're doing specifically against Pitt?
COACH BOVAIRD:  Yeah, a lot of our offensive sets are very simple combination that I came up with last year.  We have a couple of great penetrators like Lee and Kuany, and we have a couple of great shooters, so we give them the ability to come off the screens and read the screen.
It doesn't take a basketball genius to figure out that our offensive system, but it's still very difficult to guard.  We're usually pretty successful.  But you have to knock down outside shots without a doubt.  We went through a stretch in the first half there where we were missing them.  But I told the guys we're going to start making them.  Keep sticking with our game plan and we're going to start making them, and they did.

Q.  You kind of talked at the coaches' press conference, when I spoke to you about coming out with a little more edge after the Hawaii game.  Did you see that from them and their physical aggressiveness?
COACH BOVAIRD:  Oh, without a doubt.  Without a doubt.  I think the university of Hawaii game was kind of a wake‑up call for them.  They went back and I'm sure the coaches were on them hard about not playing inspired, not playing with intensity, because I was at the game, and I know Pitt's a heck of a lot better team than what they showed versus the university of Hawaii.  We knew that.  That wasn't the result that I was hoping for.  I wanted them to come in relaxed and confident.
But, no, they came out tonight and gave us their best effort which is good for us because it helps us figure out what we need to work on and so forth.  But they came out and fired aggressively.  They were in the passing lane.  They were scrambling.  They were crashing the boards, which is pretty obvious.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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