home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


March 15, 2018

Porter Moser

Marques Townes

Clayton Custer

Donte Ingram

Dallas, Texas

Loyola - 64, Miami - 62

PORTER MOSER: You know, first of all, God is good. He blessed this group. We give the glory to him. He blessed our University, this group. He blessed me being able to coach resilient kids.

The second thing with these young guys, we're in the huddle. Even when we were down seven, it was just about keep fighting, keep fighting. There's no quit in these guys. They believe. They share the ball. We had 19 assists. And a great example is that last pass to Donte with Marques to find it.

They made big shots. Clay made a big shot on an action we run in the corner.

Very, very blessed that we have kids that do not quit, that are resilient.

Q. Donte, just describe the shot and just the feeling when that goes in?
DONTE INGRAM: I mean, it was a great feeling. I thank Marques for making that pass. Any one of us could have hit that shot, but I was just fortunate enough to be in the position. And when I seen the shot and I had space, I was confident, and it went in, luckily.

Q. Before that happened, before the time-out, what was the discussion like in terms of what the plan was if you missed, and how close did what happened was it to what you wanted, what was planned?
DONTE INGRAM: Well, if our five man would have got the rebound, we would have called a time-out. Since a guard got it, you know, Coach just had faith in us and said let's go. We're under attack. At that point, it is just up to us to make a play, and luckily we came through with a play.

Q. Clay, you had that game-tying shot. Can you just talk about that pass from Ben and what went on with that play?
CLAYTON CUSTER: I mean, that's another example of Ben knowing where I'm going to be before anybody else knows where I'm going to be. No, it's a credit to Coach. I mean, we work on situations like that in the last four minutes every day in practice.

We try to be the best team at executing down the stretch. And I mean, we've worked on that action a hundred times. We felt comfortable running it, and we executed it perfectly. And it was lucky enough to make the shot.

Q. For all of you, you guys were picked as an upset pick, and there's some pressure on you, highlight game. Just how did you kind of keep -- in such a tight situation in the game, your coach mentions the time-out, keeping cool. How did you manage to keep your cool through all of this?
MARQUES TOWNES: I mean, we go through those situations all the time. Nothing has changed. We talk about in the huddle the last four minutes, just give it everything you've got and don't break, don't break on defense, just stay and execute our plays.

Yeah. We just talk about just never give up. And he just talked about in the huddle, Coach always emphasizes, don't break, don't break. These last four minutes, don't break.

DONTE INGRAM: I mean, we just all have confidence in each other. Like Marques said, we go through those situations in practice all the time. So we know it's a full 40 minutes to play, and we all want to stay together, stay connected. And if we do that and leave it all out there, we have a chance to win.

CLAYTON CUSTER: I mean, I don't know. Coach does a great job of making sure we keep our blinders on. In a situation like the NCAA Tournament, there's so many distractions around us and cameras following us around everywhere.

He closed the doors on everybody and just told us like it's time to play, it's time to focus. And I don't feel like we had pressure on us to win. I mean, we're in the situation where we can go out there and play free and play the way we've been playing all year. And I think we're a scary team if we're playing free and like we have nothing to lose. I think that's a big part of what we've been doing.

Q. For each of the three players, as you guys left the court, you all stopped and greeted Sister Jean. Can you talk about what she means to the team and if you have any stories that illustrate what type of person she is?
DONTE INGRAM: Sister Jean, she has meant so much to me personally and obviously the team. She is there before every game. She's saying a prayer before every game. After the game, she sends a general email to the team. And then at the end of the email, it'll be individualized, hey, Donte, you did this, you rebounded well tonight. Even though they were out there to get you, you still came through for the team. She's just so special, her spirit. She's just so bright, and she means so much to the city of Chicago and Loyola obviously and the team.

MARQUES TOWNES: Yeah, she gives us great, great scouting reports. But no, Sister Jean, she's just a wonderful person. Just to have her around and her presence and her aura, when you see her, it's just like the world is just great because just her spirit and her faith in us and Loyola basketball and just her being around, she's the biggest Loyola fan I've ever met in my entire life. And just having her and her giving us our pregame prayers, just having her here is just a real blessing.

CLAYTON CUSTER: Yeah, I mean, Sister Jean is like when you talk to her when she's in the same room as you, it warms your heart. She just has such a positive energy around her. I mean, she's obviously just amazing. For her to be doing what she's doing at her age, it's amazing, and it's inspiring, and I think -- I mean, I think her prayers definitely mean a little bit extra when she prays for us. She's huge for us, and she's huge for our success.

Q. It's an overused statement, but defense wins ballgames, and it took a defensive play to set up the winning basket. I know you practice offensive plays, but how much of a high emphasis do you put on defense in your game plan?
MARQUES TOWNES: I would say defense is at the top, the top, top, top with us because defense wins championships. I mean, offense can win us a couple games here and there, but we really take pride in our defense. You know, we set game goals for our defense. We want to keep them at a certain percentage, limit them to a certain amount of offensive rebounds on the glass. And you know, I don't think we got our field goal percentage today, but that just shows that we don't ever quit. I've never seen these guys quit all year, and we're just looking forward to this next game.

Q. Donte, back to the shot, this is the kind of thing that this month is all about. You've seen it before, growing up and everything, hitting the game-winning shot against the higher-ranked team. Does it really set in for you yet?
DONTE INGRAM: I mean, man, I've been saying all the last week when people have been asking me how does it feel to get to the tournament, and I've been saying, this is -- as a kid, this is what you grow up seeing, hoping that you can be in that moment. For me to be in this position with these guys, with this coaching staff, I wouldn't want it any other way, and I'm just obviously blessed to hit that shot, and I'm happy that we can get on and advance to Tennessee.

Q. Porter, how discouraging was it at times, and you talked about that resilience, did you sense that your team maintained its confidence, or did you see any kind of -- any signs that they wouldn't be able to come back?
PORTER MOSER: The only negative sign I saw was the first couple minutes defensively in the second half, and then we had a media, and we kind of got after them a little bit, and then we were guarding the way we were guarding.

But like we were down seven at a time-out. I think I called a time-out, and it was all about us regrouping, moving forward. We'd been in that position many times where we've gotten down, and we don't quit. These guys understand that there's a lot of possessions left. They understand that we can have great possessions on both ends. And that's what it was about. It was about great possessions, getting the defense, getting our -- and we always talk about this, and I think you've heard me say this, our defense has got to dictate our offense.

I think we came out of that time-out, and then Ben Richardson got a great steal and then kicked it up, and we got a lay-up. That's one of those intangible plays we talk about. Our defense created it. We needed a play like that bad.

It shows you the intangibles with Ben. You look at Ben, Ben didn't score tonight, he was unbelievable. He had some really good plays defensively, and he had eight assists, one turnover, one block. I mean, that's got to be a career. One steal, five rebounds. I mean, the kid does anything he needs to do to win, and he is just a winner.

Those are things that guys like Ben, Marques, we're in the huddle, and it wasn't any panic. It was about getting back, grinding defense, sharing the ball.

Q. This hot streak that you guys have been on, how much confidence is that giving to your team as you enter this tournament, and also, have you mentioned to them it's been 55 years since Loyola Chicago won the National Championship?
PORTER MOSER: Yeah, they're well aware of the National Championship, the guys on the team. In terms of where we're at, a lot of people talk about the conference tournament is a new season, NCAA Tournament is a new season. We've never viewed it that way. We wanted to continue on what we were doing.

The thing about this hot streak, we didn't talk -- I don't even know if the guys -- we've even talked about how many we've won out of -- in a row. It's all about this mentality of get better. We said before the -- we said before the conference tournament, those four or five practices we had, we said, we've got to get better this week. So then we had some time off, and there was a lot of questions about how's your team going to handle 11 days off. And it's the same mentality we've had all year. We can't control that. What can we control? We did situations all week. We worked on that play that Clay hit all week, all right, and that's what you do. You control things you can control.

These guys believe, and we got better this week. We got better, and that's why we're not dwelling on the past. These guys really got a good mentality because of their culture and because of their togetherness.

Q. Clayton was talking about how you keep blinders on them and that allows them to play free. Can you just talk about your philosophy and what you do to handle all the extra stuff?
PORTER MOSER: Yeah, what we've talked about is this: I was asked a question yesterday: Are you guys letting the guys enjoy the moment? 100 percent I've been letting them enjoy the moment. It's been great for them. They come down, and heck, we got a police escort to the arena. These guys, we went around Chicago, Chicago is buzzing like crazy. I want them to enjoy that. They've worked so hard to get here.

What our blinders is, as we talk about, is when it's time to be in a film session, when it's time to be in a practice, it is blinders with a focus. And it's a credit to them. They've bought into that.

So we got off the bus, and there was TV cameras everywhere, and then we went in, I wouldn't allow anybody in from that point on. That's what he meant. We closed the door, and we all just had blinders now. We got our blinders on, and it's all about the next two hours.

And these guys have -- you've got to be mature to do that, but I want them to enjoy the moment. These guys are unbelievable. I'm so blessed. We're having this journey with unbelievable guys. I want them to enjoy this, and I'm able to do that -- if I thought we had an immature group that wouldn't focus, I probably would have been a little bit more this, but we've really just been talking about the blinders when we get in the film, when we get into practice, and they've been practicing their butt off. Our walk-through this morning was just absolutely laser, right on, what we were trying to do.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297