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November 25, 2015

Eric Bovaird

Kevin Hu

James Harper

Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii


THE MODERATOR: We now welcome Chaminade to the media room. Coach Bovaird, Kevin Hu, and James Harper. Coach, an opening statement?

COACH BOVAIRD: Yeah, I thought we had more intensity and enthusiasm in the second half, as you can tell. We started off the game not ready to play and handle the ball and make passes at game-time speed.

So that's something we'll work on. We'll work on trying to be ready for the opening tip. First possessions is just as important as the 44th. So we need to make the most out of them.

Q. Can you just talk about this week, what it was like having dad in the stands all week, how cool that was?
KEVIN HU: I really appreciated that he came. It was his first time, and it was his first time seeing me play in America. He never actually came here before, and I just really wanted to show him and do my best for him because he's one of my biggest supporters. So I really appreciate it.

Q. James, can you talk about, I know nobody likes moral victories, but today you guys battled back a couple times, getting within five or so. How big is that going to be for you guys down the line being able to do that against a St. John's team like that?
JAMES HARPER: Yeah, I agree that we don't like moral victories, but we take these games as learning curves. We use them to improve our game throughout the season. Coming back against a team like St. John's, a Big East team, that's going to help us down the line when we play Division II teams in our conference when we really need to make a run.

Q. James, Chris Mullin was in here before you guys and was very complimentary of your team's style of play and how you play together and shoot the ball. Hearing that from a guy like that, what's that mean to you?
JAMES HARPER: That means a lot. I think we have a unique team where we have a lot of scorers and a lot of offense on our team. When it's your opportunity to step up and hit an open shot, you have to step up with confidence and make it, because all the other guys around you can do the exact same thing. So we really have a unique team in that sense.

It means a lot from a big-time coach and player like that to say that about our team.

Q. Coach, same question, I know you don't like moral victories, but can you just talk about how encouraged you were by the runs you guys were able to make today against a team like St. John's?
COACH BOVAIRD: It's encouraging, but that's something I already knew throughout practice and throughout exhibition games and scrimmages and all that kind of stuff. I know we're capable of making runs, but are we capable of keeping the other team from scoring 100 points on us? What did they have at halftime? 59? That's what my question marks are. I know we'll always be good offensively, but my biggest question is how good are we going to be defensively?

Q. One glaring thing about the team yesterday was the turnover issue. It seems like you got that number way down today. But just talk about having to shore that area up for the season.
COACH BOVAIRD: Well, when you play fast and you're constantly attacking and driving and kicking and making decisions, and given the freedom to do those things to everybody on the team, it's a completely different style and system that most teams operate that you have to count on those guys to make good decisions. We don't have a primary ball handler that handles the ball 80% of the time and gets you in your offense. Everybody has the ability to shoot, drive and score.

The biggest factor in today's game in that fact is we had eight or nine turnovers at halftime because we started out the game not ready to handle the ball and make those type of decisions at full game speed. So turnovers are going to be a big factor for us and percentage on defense is going to be the two primary factors to whether we have a good season or an average season.

Q. Coach, we've talked about it before, but this is now your fifth chance to do this. How do you kind of handle coming down from the national spotlight and going into the season that counts most for you guys from here?
COACH BOVAIRD: Well, I handle it fine. In fact, that was part of my speech in the locker room to the guys. We could be going and playing in McCabe Gym on Saturday right after Thanksgiving. I said there is only going to be one camera in the gym unless Ian decides to come, but there will be one camera videotaping the game and that's it. We may have 50 fans there, we may have more than that. But now that the spotlight and limelight is over, you have to be ready to play. You have to be ready to get after it.

These games, as important as they are for us and as important as they are for Chaminade, we could win the Maui Invitational, it wouldn't help us one bit getting into where we want to get into. So only our Division II games count towards making the NCAA Tournament. We play a Division II team Saturday night, and we better be ready to play.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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