San Diego State-Fresno State Postgame Quotes

San Diego State-Fresno State Postgame Quotes
San Diego State Head Coach Steve Fisher
Opening Statement:
“This was a good team victory and I’ll underline team. It was spearheaded by how we guarded and rebounded the ball. I thought we were good on
both ends rebounding which is closure for your defense and (it) gave us a lot of opportunities offensively. We did a much better job, as opposed to
Jan. 3 when we played there, guarding, and guarding without fouling and making them feel our presence to where they didn’t have the option to pull
back and shoot threes. We were better without help defense off of dribble penetration. It was a good team victory. The only downside tonight was
turnovers. Everything else was very solid against a good team and a team that came in here 5-2 just like us. We’re pleased with what we did. Aqeel
Quinn is struggling with a lower back injury that he hurt at Colorado State. I knew he would play but I wasn’t sure how effective or how long. I told
someone after the game that he does not want to miss one minute of his senior season and he epitomizes what we hope to represent – a group that
will do anything they can to help the team be successful. I thought Angelo Chol did a great job defensively with the way he helped and presented
himself when people drove in. We did what we were supposed to do. We’ll have another challenge Saturday when we play Utah State but tonight
was fun. It was a good opportunity to get back at a team that beat us.”
On four players scoring in double-figures:
“We haven’t scored a lot of points in some games so it’s hard (for someone) to score in double-figures if you don’t score many points. We scored 58
points and four guys had double-figures which is hard to do. We do a pretty good job at sharing the ball. We want to throw the ball inside and play off
of the inside-out touches and good things happen. When you have three people that say every shot is going to be a miss and I’m going to go get it,
you get second and third opportunities. It was nice to see that we had a lot of guys with opportunities that took advantage of them and 20-for-28 from
the free-throw line was good.”
On if there is concern for the amount of time players play:
“Yes, there is. It’s my comfort level with those two guys being fifth-year seniors that they’re going to do the right thing all the time. But, I need to give
them more rest. I probably could have taken JJ O’Brien out towards the end and Aqeel Quinn out a little bit more. It concerns me a little bit. We have
to be smart. AQ hasn’t practiced since Colorado State so him showing up and playing games is not a good trend to get into. JJ is in the best
condition of his life and doesn’t appear to be losing anything as a result of playing a lot. In a perfect world, they would play five minutes less a game.”
SDSU Senior Forward JJ O'Brien
On the turnaround in his performance in the second half:
“I missed my first couple (of shots), I think Angelo (Chol) did as well and I just found my rhythm in the second half.”
On grinding out wins at this point in the conference schedule:
“A lot of games are going to be like that now. Teams are scouting really well, there's not too much you can surprise them with at this point. It's hard
to get buckets, to get easy buckets and you gotta do what you gotta do to win. There are going to be games where we're flowing and it's all going
well and there's gonna be some games where you really gotta grind it out.”
On the team's strategy on defense tonight:
“I think we pressured them better, we didn't allow them to get into a rhythm early and make easy shots. I think a lot of it was our pressure. I'm not
sure what their game-plan was on offense, but we definitely wanted to step up our pressure.”
On if the Mountain West is SDSU's to lose:
“Ever night for every team is a battle, no game is going to be a cake walk. It's gonna be a battle from here on out for all teams who are trying to win
and we don't see anything as more favorable or ours to lose. We know it's in our own hands, our own destiny, so we just have to play.”
On Malik Pope's coast to coast dunk attempt:
“I was down there, it was a nice play. It would have been great if he could have finished it and they didn't foul him, but it was a good play.”
On the team only taking six three point shots in tonight's game:
“I think our game-plan is to always throw it inside and play from there, so I guess when we got it in there we saw options there to score, to shoot in
there. It's just the way the game went today, but I think our game plan is always to get it inside and then play from us inside.”
On the team's preparation thus far for the Utah State game Saturday:
“We haven't seen anything yet, we'll start tomorrow or the day after. We haven't watched film on them yet as a team.”
Junior forward Angelo Chol
On what motivated the offensive change during the second half:
“Last game I didn’t play (well), so I thought I had to make something happen today. I have to help the team somehow. I was mad the past two days,
so I had to make something happen today, and help the team.”
On how much of the Colorado State game is still with the team:
“A lot of it.”
On how comfortable defense is becoming:
“I think I feel more comfortable because the coaches have been on us about staying low. I realized when being low, you’re actually quicker. I’ve been
standing up too much. I feel like I’m more comfortable on defense.”
San Diego State Head Coach Steve Fisher (Radio)
On Aztec control through the second half:
“I agree with you Ted, I thought we competed hard. We were very very good defensively keeping them in front of us, much different than the first
game. And I thought we did a much better job crowding their perimeter players. Paul Watson in the first game got into a comfort zone with the way
we guarded. JJ (O’Brien) came in and he made them feel his presence out there. He was not the lone ranger, I thought we did a great job of
shrinking the floor. Angelo (Chol) and Skylar (Spencer) did a great job of coming over when the penetration occurred, they were big and made it hard
for them to get through. It was a good team victory. They scored two or three baskets at the end, but you can’t put blame. I thought our overall
defense effort was superb. We really rebounded the ball today, we had a couple of tip sequences offensively today that got us to the free throw line.
We have to continue to do that we had 17 offensive rebounds. 17 turnovers is too many. We had 18 against them at home and 17 here, that is way
too many. But an overall team victory.”
On Skylar Spencer and Angelo Chol with the interior post defense:
“They had nothing easy. When they penetrated inside they were big, they guarded without fouling which was good. The last game we played they
made more free throws than we shot. Today we were 20 for 28 and they were 8 for 9, a huge piece of the game. We came in and did what we were
supposed to do on our home court.”
On Angelo Chol’s performance:
“He did a great job. He’s a presence inside in that low block. He needs to continue to, when he gets it, chin it and find the defense to make the play.
He has a tendency when he gets in there to try and go too fast, but he did a nice job for us. I was particularly surprised with what he did defensively.
He’s not a shot blocker but he was really big in taking the charge.”
On Aqeel Quinn playing with back pain:
“He was hurting, there is no question about it. He hasn’t practiced since Colorado State on Saturday and his back is really bothering him. Tomorrow
we are taking the day off. It will be especially good for Aqeel (Quinn) but good for all of our guys to take a deep breath, get back into the classroom,
and catch up academically. Trey Kell didn’t play because he was sick and hadn’t practiced in two days. AQ (Aqeel Quinn), I knew that he wanted to
play, I didn’t know if he would be able. He doesn’t want to miss a minute of his senior season, he did a great job for us and we’re proud of him.”
On Utah State beating Wyoming:
“No question that every league is unpredictable. Where you play, especially on the road but not only on the road, you must be on your ‘A’ game or
you might not win, you probably won’t win. I have not watched much on Utah State, I know they have a lot of new faces. But I know they are good, if
you beat Wyoming you have to be good. We’ll be facing an excited ball club coming in here and we will be excited too. This is a big game for us to
maintain that hold serve at home and have a victory against a very good Utah State.”
On the crowd:
“Our fans have been sensational. Dutch (Brian Dutcher) came into the locker room five minutes before the game and he said, ‘Nobody is here.’ I
thought it filled in, and we wound up with a good crowd. I thought our student section was sensational and they continue to be a driving factor in the
success that this team is having. We are very appreciative. We need this building filled with fans on Saturday when we play another very important
Fresno State head coach Rodney Terry
On the game:
“Every night, you have to come to play and have something to hang your hat on as far as an identity. Every night, (SDSU) is going to come out and
defend really hard. Tonight we gave them some points off turnovers and that really helped them and made them a tough team to guard. You have to
have an identity this time of year and understand how important preparation and effort is every single night. (SDSU) has been able to do that, and
when you have a culture of doing that, it gives you a chance every night.”
On their struggles late in the first half:
“We really kind of self-inflicted some things. We were right where we needed to be. We didn’t have great player movement, ball movement or great
spacing. (SDSU) is a really good defensive team, one of the best in the country, but our mistakes contributed to a lot of our problems tonight. We
went into halftime with just one assist and eight turnovers. It was our decision making and not doing what we need to do. You can’t do that on the
road against really good teams.”
On his message to the team after the game:
“We were right where we needed to be, it was a one-possession game. WE were getting stops and doing what we need to do, but you can’t have
those types of collapses, especially on the road. Guys have to have maturity, but tonight we splintered as a team. You have to stay together. SDSU
understands that part right now – the urgency.”
Fresno State guard Marvelle Harris
On the end of the first half:
“We just started playing like we were at the beginning of the season when we were 1-6. We didn’t play like we have been playing these last couple
games that got us on this winning streak.”
On their struggles late in the first half:
“I think we just broke down as a team, and the leaders didn’t step up. I blame myself. We didn’t step up and take charge and show maturity. Like
coach said, in the blink of an eye, a lead can expand quickly. We played a lot of one-on-one basketball and we didn’t execute. We broke down, and
in this league, it’s hard to play catchup.”