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March 12, 2014

Mike Brey

Pat Connaughton


Wake Forest – 81
Notre Dame – 68

COACH BREY:  You know, I give credit to Wake Forest.  They made really big plays.  We couldn't defend enough to get out of there tonight.  You know, Atkins' foul trouble in the first half probably wasn't the best of things for our rhythm, but I think the answer has been really what's plagued us most of the year, just haven't been able to get stops enough.
Thomas is a bear; Williams hit some big shots to get them going.  We went zone a little bit, he banged down some shots.  We tried to change defenses, and it seems like every time we change defense, they go zone, they hit a three.  They made timely baskets, and we weren't efficient enough offensively to, kind of, score enough, and I think you have to give Wake's defense credit for that.

Q.  What makes Devin Thomas such a tough match‑up for you?
COACH BREY:  Yeah, he's scorched us twice.  He's got great strength around the bucket.  He's able to drive it from 15, 18 feet.  We've had no answers for him twice.  You know, we tried a lot of different guys on him, three of our big bodies on him.  We came down a couple times and doubled, and they'd kick and hit a three.
But he's really been‑‑ he's the guy that's really haunted us, and I think, when I think about their season, when they've had success, he's played great.  He's really played well.

Q.  The impact of the early foul trouble on Atkins?
COACH BREY:  Yeah, I think it did affect our rhythm a little bit.  He's been such a key guy for us, scoring, jump starting us offensively, getting us in stuff, and he was probably back on his heels, I felt.  I was worried that if I took him out, the thing may get away from us in the first half, and then he gets his third.  I thought he did a good job in the second half trying‑‑ his motor was better.
But I think in a tournament setting, and, for us, given this is our first experience down here in this thing, we needed to get off to a better start to believe that we could win a game here.

Q.  Mike, you mentioned this obviously being your first time in Greensboro with Notre Dame.  Can you kind of encapsulate what the season was like in the ACC?
COACH BREY:  You know, I've said all week, for our program, big picture here, forget the game today.  We're very honored to play in the ACC Tournament, for Notre Dame basketball to be part of the most historic‑‑ one of the most historic things in college basketball, rich tradition.  I've tried to educate our guys over the weekend leading‑‑ before we came down here about just what that means.  We certainly would have loved to stay around a little bit longer, but we're going to have other cracks at the ACC Tournament.
You know, I think at times it was a year of adjustment for us on a lot of fronts, some personnel losses and kind of new preparation, new scouting, new venues, all of those things.  I would hope we'll be better at it next year in year two.

Q.  This is for Pat:  You guys cut it down to five early in the second half and Miles Overton hit the two threes from the left corner.  The impact on the game, what did you see there, Pat?
PAT CONNAUGHTON:  Well, like coach said, they hit a bunch of timely shots.  At the end of the day it comes down to our defense stepping up a little bit more and making them miss shots and making them take tough shots.

Q.  Mike, I apologize if you answered this, but I know you emphasized rebounding and defense during the week‑‑
COACH BREY:  Very disappointed on that front.  You know, we couldn't‑‑ we didn't carry much over from what we talked about over the weekend.  You know, that cost us the game.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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