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March 19, 2015

Kenny Chery

Scott Drew

Royce O'Neale

Taurean Prince



COACH SCOTT DREW: Well, I think I've been a part of one of the best moments in college basketball in the NCAA Tournament with my brother hitting that shot and I think I've been part of one of the worst that I'll remember, R.J. hitting that shot. The thing I've been disappointed with is all year long we've executed down the stretch. We've been a tough team and I feel bad the way that the last five minutes went from the standpoint, 21 turnovers for us all game. That's not who we are, and yet I know that's what will be dwelt upon and talked about is how we didn't finish the game, and that's on me as a coach.

Q. Taurean, you guys have handled the press really well all year. What happened today?
TAUREAN PRINCE: Made some mental errors as far as trying to get the ball to our ball handlers and making sure they get to the free-throw line, but it happens to the best of them, and we're just going to move on from it.

Q. Kenny and Royce, your view of the R.J. shot there? It looked like he was a good 30 feet out. Were you expecting him to take the shot at that point?
ROYCE O'NEALE: We knew he was going to shoot it, he just made a good shot.

KENNY CHERY: He just made a contested three. There was nothing we could do about it. We did our job, and he just made it.

Q. Royce, when you see a shot like that that goes down and your season and you've worked so hard, how difficult is it to see that happen?
ROYCE O'NEALE: We've been preparing all season for moments like those. He hit a good shot. I mean...

Q. Kenny, you guys had a 12-point lead, just under three minutes left. What were you thinking at that point and did y'all feel like you got a little too tentative, or how would you describe it?
KENNY CHERY: We probably did, but they executed.

Q. Coach, the press was something you guys did very well all year. What were they doing differently or was it just execution on your part?
COACH SCOTT DREW: I think that's March Madness from the standpoint it's a big moment, and we didn't embrace it. We didn't handle -- that 21, I can't remember having 21 turnovers. The last two times we played West Virginia, I think we were ten or under, around that area. Momentum is a big thing, and once you make one turnover, now all of a sudden, things get sped up, and I think that's what happened to us. Their defense is good, and they've got to get a lot of the credit for causing us to turn it over because Kenny, Lester, and Royce have been very good all year long at handling pressure.

Q. Scott, did you feel like -- I think John asked Kenny, did you feel like you got a little tentative or passive because y'all didn't score a field goal in the last five and a half minutes.
COACH SCOTT DREW: Yeah, that's my fault. You've got a 12-point lead with three to go, so even though we weren't scoring, we were taking time off the clock. We had some good looks when we went late clock with one of our sets and then twice we didn't get a good look. In hindsight definitely would have preferred to start the clock earlier on those two plays. But I think the biggest thing would have been if you take out the turnovers in the last three minutes, I mean, that would be the difference. Even when we're coming down on the fast break, if you finish that, you're good. You get the rebound. If you hold it, you're good. If you make your two free throws, you're good. I mean, there's a plethora of things that went wrong in the last three minutes. It wasn't one play. I mean, Kenny is the all time best free throw shooter in our history, no one you trust more on the line. I know that was the big thing in the locker room, just making sure they know that no player, no one play, led to this loss. I mean, we had 21 turnovers. We had a lot of other opportunities.

Q. You'd actually done a really good job on R.J. for about the first 35 minutes. Was it just a case of him finally getting loose or were they doing some things to get him loose?
COACH SCOTT DREW: Well, he wasn't shooting from 30 feet earlier in the game. I mean, those two deep threes he made -- I thought the first one, if we could have kept a guard up high, there was no reason to not be up there with him. And that got him going, I think, when he -- at the 1:34 mark when he hit that three. If we could have taken that one out, then I don't know if -- down the stretch, he showed his versatility in different ways he could score, but I thought that was the three that got him going.

Q. Y'all have done such a great job against the press all year. Was it something about their press that was different or how did you see it?
COACH SCOTT DREW: I think that's just about the tournament. It's a bigger moment, more pressure. I mean, unfortunately, we made mistakes that we haven't made during the year, and it was probably the last thing I was worried about coming into the game was their press from the standpoint we've been so good against it.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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