March 5, 1998
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK
COACH FRASCHILLA: Well, we will take this win. It is hard to beat a team three times, especially in about three weeks, so I feel good about this win. They made some big, big shots, Boston College. They never quit. And when you got four players like the four they have with the kind of pride they have and the kind of ability, they made us work for this game. I've got to tip my hat to those four guys. They were brilliant over their careers and, you know, I am just disappointed for them that they didn't go out the way they wanted. But it was a good win for us. We got a chance to play a lot of people tonight. I thought our depth was a factor when we got up to in the late stages of the second half. I think it was because we had got a chance to play a lot of people. We had some nice performances. I haven't seen the stats, but I was pleased with the way we played overall.
Q. What did you like best about the way your team played tonight?
COACH FRASCHILLA: I liked the fact that it is not often that we really outscore people. Usually we do things with our defense, but they made some -- I mean, they made some great shots. I mean, Antonio Granger, man, he's a heck of a player. He loves playing against us. And so they made some shots, but we made some shots. And we kept at them and kept scoring. I thought A big lift tonight was Tyrone Grant, the second half. Really was hard to stop down low. That was big for us. When we got a lot of contributions, you know, we were shooting 68 percent at the half. I don't know how it ended up. I liked our offense tonight.
Q. Did you want to establish your inside game early?
COACH FRASCHILLA: I think Zendon was ready for a good night. He has had some good solid battles with Curley, I am sure over his four years. Mickey is a very tough physical player, and Zendon wanted to play well against him. They have had some good battles. I thought Zendon did a nice job.
Q. You talk about going up against Syracuse now and coming off the big win.
COACH FRASCHILLA: I haven't thought about it, Jim. I'm glad we are in the semifinals. When you think Syracuse/St. John's in the semifinals, Big East, that is somewhat historic or traditional, so I like that. They have an excellent team. We played a nail-biter up there just a few weeks ago. If we get a blizzard tonight, that might help us. But, they are going to be a very tough matchup for us. They are a good team, they play hard. They are smart. And, you know what, as Jimmy V. used to say, just survive in advance and we advance to the next round.
Q. In the second half the team came out really focused and determined that they weren't going to let this get away.
COACH FRASCHILLA: I think you are right. I talked at halftime. Our attitude at the half is we were down and kind of down in the dumps and, you know, I told them to enjoy this. You are up 6 and you are playing against a good team; you are making shots, they are making shots. I kind of felt like everybody was just a little bit flat. And I was glad to see that we came out relatively focused. We went inside and we made some shots and extended the lead. It is a credit to these guys, because last time we played B.C., as you know, we were a very flat start of the second half. I think our guys knew that. I think that they knew B.C. wouldn't quit.
Q. You talked about this whole season being sort of uncharted territory, this being the second season of that season. Just what is your assessment now of them being in their first one and out, how they performed overall?
COACH FRASCHILLA: My team for winning one and moving on? It is nice. This would have been a season for us of some firsts. So feel good for these guys. I was probably a little bit wired just because I want these guys to have some success. And I was really happy for the seniors to be able to get that tournament monkey off their back and move to the semifinals. And we will take it from there. I was very happy for these guys. And it is another win. It gives us, I think, a good hold on a good seed and we are still playing. So I am happy for the seniors, particularly.
Q. Could you talk about Woodward and the other guard really getting after Turner and Charles early but they seemed to respond to it?
COACH FRASCHILLA: Duane is a good player, and our guys made some mistakes. They have made more big plays this year than they have mistakes. Maybe unlike the past, they have been much more solid for us this year.
Q. You talk about Felipe made some nice plays.
COACH FRASCHILLA: He was terrific. Felipe has been banged up a little bit the last few days. But, you know, he hasn't said much about it. And I don't know what he ended up with, but he had 20. He was very productive, I thought, when he was in there. And I'm very happy for him. He made some big shots. He played solid defense, and I am happy that he is still playing.
Q. Felipe, can you talk about what it feels for you as a senior to finally get a win in this tournament and be advancing?
FELIPE LOPEZ: Definitely feels good. The more important thing for myself for the senior is to leave the freshman upperclassman because like that I would be able to help them for next year. Obviously you want tradition that everyone feels good about winning games and that is some of the things that we want to leave over here, St. John's the three seniors want to leave.
Q. Felipe, two questions, coach said you were a little banged up. Talk about that.
FELIPE LOPEZ: We have been going pretty hard in practice. We go after each other in practice and there is going to be situations that people going to get hurt. That is just part of the game. For the second question to get the first win is something for myself, it feels good. You get the monkey off your back. Now you can play more relaxed knowing that you are going to be able to go over there and play your game. Obviously we have to move on. We have Syracuse ahead of us. We have to concentrate on them. We have just got to be focused. It is going to be 3 Long days but it is going to be something in the long run we are going to be able to laugh and enjoy.
Q. How important was getting the fast start considering the loss to Connecticut last week?
FELIPE LOPEZ: Well, you know, I think the loss to UCONN kind of helped us to maintain our focus to get back to our basics defensively and today we have Hamilton coming at everyone. They couldn't stop him at all. When you get the head start like that you definitely get the whole team started.
Q. Did you think you came in with a little bit of advantage obviously having rested and B.C. Going into overtime?
FELIPE LOPEZ: Yeah, I think it helped as you lot. In a way obviously played hard yesterday. We watched the whole game as a team and we kind of knew that they was going to be able to play with us. But, since we got that day off, it kind of helped us a little bit because we was able to run a little faster than them. Obviously that is what happened when you play hard every single night.
JOHN PAQUETTE: Thank you.
End of FastScripts....