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March 14, 2019

Wayne Tinkle

Tres Tinkle

Stephen Thompson Jr.

Las Vegas, Nevada

Colorado - 73, Oregon State - 58

WAYNE TINKLE: Yeah, that pretty much sums it up, just picked the wrong game of the year to come out, not make shots, not defend with the intensity we needed to early on, and dug a big hole for ourselves. Great effort in the second half to give ourselves a chance, and I think we just ran out of steam.

Q. Tres, can you pinpoint with why you guys came out so slow today?
TRES TINKLE: No. They came out, really made shots, got confident, and we just didn't really do much to try to stop it. Gave them a lot of looks at the hoop. Easy ones. And we didn't have very good spacing moving within, so that makes for a bad combination.

Q. Defensively, you felt like they contested everything? The first eight, nine shots it seemed like they were there and contesting and kind of set the tone early with their defense?
STEPHEN THOMPSON JR.: You have to give them credit. They were playing with a lot of energy, a lot of intensity on the defensive end. And I think we didn't really do a good job of body movement and ball movement early on there, so tough looks to start the game, which really gave them momentum.

Q. At halftime what was the locker room like?
WAYNE TINKLE: Well, obviously early on the guys were a little bit disappointed because of the effort in the first half. But we made some points that we got across that we needed to do on both ends. Both these guys just mentioned our spacing was really poor and our player and ball movement was poor in the first half. We'd have guys going to move and four of the guys would be watching instead of deploying. So we had to take some tough shots.

And then Colorado saw that we were struggling and so when you do that the thing on the other end becomes this big (indicating.) We let them hit some threes, get some shots at the rim, and our guys carried the offensive frustrations to the defensive end, unfortunately.

But they rallied. We told them we just need to come out and fight, play like we have all year. Again, we showed great heart and effort in the second half.

And then there was -- they called their second timeout and we reminded our guys we've battled back, let's stay in character, let's stay in discipline. And then we had a few possessions where I thought we tried to hit gland slams, and they stretched it out to get to the free throw line a bunch. And it was a little too much.

Much better defensive effort the second half. Guys responded out of the locker room, we had better spacing and ball movement in many the second half. It was tough. We had a season low in the first half in 18 points. A game low of only five assists. You can't do that when you get to this time of year.

Q. When you want the bye, and get it, does it seem like Colorado is warmed up, been on the floor, is there a little bit that works against you, too?
WAYNE TINKLE: That's what everybody says. They got their funk out of the way last night, had a rhythm, got used to the gym. We never mentioned that. We never mentioned the funk or the jitters. When you play in the tournament in your first game you've got to come out. There's a lot of intensity and energy that will help get you through that. And I don't think we had that. We didn't -- for whatever reason, even when we went to some guys off the bench, we didn't bring just that energy and electricity that you need to to kind of invigorate the rest of the group. And we did it in the second half. We found some guys that got it going a little bit for a while. But we didn't have enough of it from the start.

Q. Tres, I know it's still kind of fresh, but how would you sum up this season?
TRES TINKLE: Obviously positive. We did a lot of things for the first time in over 30 years. There were a lot of positives. But we look back and we see there's a handful of games that we still could have won, should have won. But we feel like our season is not over yet. We're looking to get another game. We're going to keep learning, keep continuing to grow, and just try to turn those weaknesses into strengths.

Q. Where do you guys go from here? Would you expect to have a chance to play another game at home? And once you get past this one, will the guys be excited about that?
WAYNE TINKLE: We'll see. We'll see what happens after the selection show Sunday and who reaches out, that sort of thing. My take always if it's the right situation these guys have had a remarkable year, and have earned an opportunity, I think, to maybe get a chance in the NIT or something. But we'll take that as it comes down the road.

Right now obviously we've got some young guys that are disappointed. We have to put our arms around them, love them up. And then at the appropriate time we'll move forward.

I do want to give Colorado credit. They were very physical on the perimeter defensively and in the post. They were really -- our guys are going to be beat up. And when they were pressuring us on the perimeter the plan was to try to get them inside and they did a great job of taking away post entries, ducks and seals, and we went to a spread pick and roll, and some other things. But they played their tails off. They're playing very well.

Q. You started out for today, Tad seemed a little surprised he thought Zach would probably start, what was the reason?
WAYNE TINKLE: We wanted to have a little more athleticism out there with Bey and big Battey. Al earned it the way he played at Washington State. It was a no-brainer, the entire staff agreed, we thought that would be a good way to match with their athleticism.

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