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NIT POSTSEASON


March 27, 2012


Darnell Gant

Lorenzo Romar

Terrence Ross


NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK

MINNESOTA テや 68
WASHINGTON テや 67


COACH ROMAR:テつ Well, we played against a team that were pretty predictable.テつ They were predictable in that they were going to play tough, hard‑nosed defense.テつ They were going to play a scrappy brand of basketball.テつ They were going to share the ball.テつ They were going to be very disciplined.テつ They were going to play with great effort.
When I talk about predictability, that's what I mean about the Minnesota team.テつ You knew they were going to bring it and they were going to bring it the right way.テつ Hats off to them, because they are a true team, and that's what you really want your team to be, a team.
So we give them a lot of credit.
I feel bad for our guys that we were not able to advance.テつ You know, you always feel bad for your seniors, those that may not get another chance to win a championship, but all in all, I thought we did a lot of good things this year.テつ We were not able to finish, though.テつ Give Minnesota a lot of credit.

Q.テつ Can you just talk about the first half.テつ It just seemed like they dominated the tempo and defensively took you guys out of what you wanted to do.
COACH ROMAR:テつ Yeah, there was some of that.テつ There was also, on our part, a lot of‑‑ at times, we just seemed like a step off, a little bit like when we played against Oregon State in the PAC 12 opening game, tournament opening game.
Similar in that we came back in this game and came back and played with more focus and intensity.

Q.テつ How tough to have get down and have to fight your way back against a good team?
COACH ROMAR:テつ Well, any time you're fighting back, it's always tough.テつ But in the second half, I thought we were, a team.
And when you are a team and everybody is playing together on one accord, you don't realize that you're in the trenches as much because you're just playing.テつ You don't care about anything but playing together and making the next possession go your way on the offensive or defensive end.テつ You're not thinking, wow, this is taking a lot of energy.テつ When you're coming back like that, you're just playing; you're leaving it all out there.

Q.テつ You make the 3‑pointer at the end of the first half; did you feel that was going to give you an emotional boost to make a run in the second half and toward later on in the game?
DARNELL GANT:テつ Yeah, at the time we needed something, and if the 3‑pointer was going to bring us to the second half‑‑ I feel like what we needed to do in the second half was just guard.テつ We did a poor job in the first half of keeping the guards in front.テつ They got a lot of drop‑offs and dunks and that really took us out of our rhythm.テつ When we are not playing defense, everything gets cluttered.
I don't think the 3‑pointer is what helped us in the second half; I feel like defense is what was supposed to help us in the second half.

Q.テつ This is your third loss at Madison Square Garden this season; is there something about the travel that the team has trouble with?
COACH ROMAR:テつ No, I'm not going to say that.テつ I thought we played a heck of a game against Marquette, a team that finished second in the BIG EAST, I believe.テつ We just didn't come out on top.
Against Duke, it was a little similar to this evening's game where we got down actually against them by a lot and we came back.テつ I don't think we played a full 40 minutes here in the Garden where we just didn't bring it.テつ So I can't necessarily say that.
We're here; we've been here since Saturday, so we have had plenty of time to get acclimated.

Q.テつ Did you think that there was one thing or two things that really spurred that second‑half comeback?
COACH ROMAR:テつ 11:45 or something like that left in the first half, they scored seven points.テつ We were getting stops.テつ Darnell said it, he hit the nail on the head; we started to guard.テつ We played better defense the beginning of that second half.テつ That was the difference.

Q.テつ Can you talk about Terrence, he really kept you in it the first half, I think he had one of the first 16 points.テつ How important was that?
COACH ROMAR:テつ Very important, like so many times this year.テつ He was five‑for‑ten in the first half from the field and as many times as he's carried us, sometimes in the first half, sometimes in the second half, sometimes as many as 26 points in a half before.テつ He has the ability to do that.テつ He has the ability to rebound and defend.テつ Terrence played his heart out tonight.

Q.テつ (Inaudible)?
COACH ROMAR:テつ A couple turnovers, maybe a turnover, difficult shot, and then to have a couple defensive lapses; it always comes back to defense.テつ Teams make runs on you and it's because a lot of times you didn't guard or you weren't taking care of the ball.

Q.テつ Can you talk about the play of C.J. Wilcox in the second half and how that sparked the team?
COACH ROMAR:テつ Well, he had taken one shot in the first half and I thought our guys did a better job of getting him the ball, so we got more looks in the second half.テつ A lot like Terrence, you give C.J. Wilcox looks, he's going to make you pay for them.

Q.テつ Did you feel like the momentum was yours and you were going to win it in overtime?
TERRENCE ROSS:テつ I never went into the game thinking we were going to lose.テつ You know, playing in that last five minutes, there's some things I wish we did differently, but I mean, there's nothing we can do about it now.テつ We came so far back, we were down ten, Darnell made a big shot and then you buckle down and play defense in the second half and got a stop.テつ I feel like we came a little short of what we were supposed to do with mental lapses.

Q.テつ Did you feel like‑‑ was it just the flow of the offense‑‑
TERRENCE ROSS:テつ I think it was more the flow of the offense.テつ We got a lot better in the last few days, so it showed on the court, we were moving a lot more.テつ We were attacking a lot more and we were not standing around as much.テつ So I think that really helped us, and you know, that's where we really get our points from.テつ So we just had to stick with that and I think that's what helped.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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