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March 11, 2015

Jamie Dixon

Cameron Wright



COACH DIXON:  Congratulations to NorthCarolina State.  I thought Barber and Lacey were terrific, and I thought they really hit some tough shots.  So they deserved it with the way those two guys played.  Some off‑the‑dribble isolation plays that they made, some end‑the‑clock threes, and even that zone and Lacey at that deep three.  So really a great performance by those two guys.
The guys kept battling.  We got down.  We with stood the three‑point barrage.  We kept trying to change some things up.  But we kept battling.  Got it closer, but just didn't have enough in us.  So we got some good performances.  Thought Cameron did some good things and played well in his last time in an ACC Tournament.  But we just came up short.
So congratulations to N.C. State.  They're playing very well.  We lost to a good team.  We're a good team, but I think we can play better than we played today.

Q.  Coach Gottfried mentioned Cat Barber's speed as maybe something that you guys didn't have an answer for.  How did Barber's speed, I guess impact the game?
CAMERON WRIGHT:  He's a very good player.  His teammates do a great job setting ball screens for him.  He's aggressive and hit a few shots early on so he caught a rhythm.  He did a great job getting to the basket tonight.

Q.  Coach, your track record for making the NCAA tournament is one of the best in the entire country.  I mean, 10 out of 11 is unbelievable.  What do you say to your guys at a time like this?  Because the only other time you didn't make it you won a tournament.
COACH DIXON:  Yeah, yeah, it's been hard.  I mean, we're used to being in the NCAA tournament.  We play for that.  But we knew what our challenges were and we didn't get it done.  As far as our guys, I mean, this is not‑‑ it's something we've been aware of because defensively we haven't been good enough and we put ourselves in this position.  Early on in the year we went through a stretch where we played well.  We got better.  We have gotten better.  We got better defensively.  Our numbers indicate that, but we didn't see it tonight.
But it's disappointing.  You have challenges, different things occurred this year, but I thought we kept battling, kept fighting, and we were written off.  We came back, kept doing some things, kept getting better.  Even tonight we're down big and early and we kept fighting.  So this team‑‑ I'm proud of these guys.  They've worked hard.  They come in and they practice hard, but we just have not been able to get to where we need to in the past defensively.  I mean, it's been pretty clear to me from the start, we've gotten better, but it just hasn't happened.  So that's why we're where we're at.

Q.  Cat Barber has always had speed and can get up and down the court.  But he's expanded his range of late.  What do you have to do to slow a guy like that down?
COACH DIXON:  Yeah, he hit the threes and he's not known for three of‑point shooting.  So he hit those early and that got him going.  He went 12 for 12 from the free‑throw line.  So, again, it was a good day for him.  He made plays.  He made shots.  You know, it was just his night.  At times I thought we had him in the right position where we needed to.  Lacey too as well where they made some shots at the end or got fouled at the end of the clock.  That was probably the biggest mistake we made they kept getting to the foul line.  When we had chances to cut it down and make it a two possession game, some fouls at the end I think really hurt us.

Q.  Jamie talked about making the NCAAs and the disappointment that goes along with that.  How do you respond as a leader on the floor and as a leader of your team to get ready to play in something that's not going to be the NCAA?  Whether it's the NIT or whatever.
CAMERON WRIGHT:  Whether or not we play in a different tournament or not, I'm just going to talk to the guys and tell them we still have to keep our heads up for whatever we do.  Whether or not that's going to another tournament or whether or not that's our off‑season, then obviously I'm a senior, so I'm done.
So I just need to try to talk to those guys, keep their heads up and remember this feeling, I guess, so they'll never feel it again.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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