Postgame Quotes: Nebraska vs. Miami

By NU Athletic Communications

Miami Head Coach Jim Larranaga

Opening Statement
“Well, we didn't play a great game tonight. I was hoping we would, a lot of credit goes to Nebraska, they did a pretty good job. They basically controlled the game with their defense and we had a very hard time scoring in the first half. (We) did a little bit better job in the second half, but still not enough. Our best chance was when it was 36-31, and we got fouled and we had a one-and-one free throw situation. That was really our last chance because I think they (Nebraska) ended up getting a three-pointer at the other end and got separation. We really didn't get a chance to carve into that lead after that.”

On Shat Stood Out To Him (stats)
“Well we shot 6 for 25 in the fist half—scoring I think 13 points. We were 1 for 12 from three, we just have a hard time scoring the ball. We lost a lot of firepower last year and even our best scoring freshman to an injury. Different guys have to step up and it is hard. You cant have one guy with 25 and everybody else with five. You need better balance in your scoring and we just didn't get it tonight.”

On Who He Wants To Step Up Scoring
"I'd like to find our first scorer first.”

On Their Defensive Performance
“They actually started out hitting a couple threes against us, they ended up shooting 39 percent from the field and 35 percent from the three point line. What really hurt us is they got to the foul line more than us. What we were looking for was the opposite, because they have been fouling quite a bit in games. We told our guys, if you drive, they will foul you. We didn't get to the foul line at all in the first half. We did a little bit better of a job in the second half, shooting 15 free throws, that was much more to our liking.”

On What Nebraska Did Defensively
“Well we were trying to go inside early on, they kept the ball from getting into the post easily. Our post players didn't seal them up enough, so it was very hard to throw the ball inside. You can try to go inside, but if you cant throw the ball in there, it is pretty hard to score inside.”


Sophomore Forward Walter Pitchford and Junior Forward Leslee Smith


On The Defense During The Game

Smith: “I think it improved a lot. Especially after the past game where we weren’t as physical. We’ve improved in terms of paying attention to the scouting reports. Our work really showed, and we put some pressure on these guys.”

Pitchford: “One thing for us is that I feel like in practice or in film, coach points out, especially the things we really need to crack down on and get better at. As a team, I think we picked up on stuff really fast. That’s a big key for us in winning games and getting better, and getting prepared for the next game.

On If Miami Was Surprised By Nebraska’s Defense

Smith: “You know, they really have some big guys and good players. One thing that coach always tells us is to not give them angles. Don’t give them easy shots. Make it hard for them. So I think they were surprised and that we took them out of their game. We made them do other things.”

On If Miami Was Frustrated Offensively

Pitchford: “Referring back to the last question, we just picked up on stuff fast. We took advantage of the game.”

On The Momentum Swing In The Second Half

Pitchford: “Everybody on the team will do whatever it takes to win. I was just in the right place at the right time.”

Smith: “There are many different ways you and gain momentum. Some people use dunks or other special plays. You know teams who use defensive plays and stops, you don’t really get a lot of charges now because of the rule changes. So when we get a charge, it’s really exciting and it means we get the ball back. It really changes the emotion of the team because we don’t get a lot of those. We really like when we get another shot like that.”

Nebraska Coach Tim Miles

On the Huskers’ defensive improvement
“We guarded the ball well, and we handled their screen-and-roll stuff well so they were taking outside shots. They are not a great outside shooting team, as they have been. Some of those guys have shot better. They started out one for their first 15 or something like that. You knew that was going to change. At the end of the day, I just felt we did a really good job of getting the ball under control. We rebounded alright. We hung with them on the glass. We actually out-rebounded them, which is a good sign for us. Of course they made, essentially, six out of their last ten 3-point shots I think, including the foul on a three. It was three free throws so they came storming back, which puts the blood pressure way up there.”

On what this win means for the team right now
“It means we get to play Creighton on Sunday. It was a good win for us. I think we saved the Big Ten’s bacon, right? We ended up hanging in there with that. That was important for us. We wanted to be a part of that. Last year, I don’t think anybody picked us to beat Wake Forest, and we were able to do that. We like being a part of this (Big Ten/ACC) Challenge. It means something to our program.”

On two games with a big lead in the second half being cut down by the opponent
“Just the way these guys made threes, they were going to come back on anybody. I didn’t think we made that many errors compared to the way we had gotten careless against Northern Illinois. I just think that they made some plays.”


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