Post-Kentucky game quotes

Feb. 17, 2009

Recap | Box Score | Notes

Vanderbilt 77 – Kentucky 64
February 17, 2009 – Memorial Gym
Attendance: 14,366

Kevin Stallings, Vanderbilt Head Coach

Opening Comments:
“That’s more like what I’ve gotten accustomed to with these guys in terms of their energy and effort. I was really pleased, even at halftime. We played with good intensity and emotion. I thought we did a good job on Jodie Meeks. Lance Goulbourne came off the bench and gave us a boost. We played well in the second half. We started it off well and played well all the way through it. We got into the Bonus early in each half.

“Kentucky is a good team and we feel fortunate to have won. One of the best players in our league didn’t play tonight and we acknowledge that.”

On Guarding Kentucky Guard Jodie Meeks:
“You have to keep pressure on him and work it. He gets to the foul line and he’s a good free throw shooter. He’s a great player and one of the best our league has to offer.”

On Getting the Ball Inside:
“Kentucky played four perimeter players most of the game and so did we. We always want to pound the ball inside. When [Perry] Stevenson got in foul trouble, we tried to get it to A.J. [Ogilvy] and Festus [Ezeli].”

On the Game’s Key Stretch:
“We started off [the second half] on an 11-2 run. I thought that was the key stretch in the game. When you come out in the second half and do that, it’s a real good sign.”

On the Play of the Vanderbilt Bench:
“In the first half, Festus [Ezeli] had some good plays. He keeps getting better. Lance [Goulbourne] was a huge key in this game. He made it from three, he got to the foul line, he played a real good game. I’m really happy for him. He deserves it.”

Vanderbilt Players

Jermaine Beal, guard

Opening Comments:
“Coach (Stallings) told us to be free and be aggressive, so everybody came out attacking the whole game. I think we established ourselves in the second half and made a run there.

“The whole atmosphere can be just amazing. It was that way tonight.”

Talk about guarding Kentucky’s Jodie Meeks:
“Meeks is a great player and a great scorer. I think Jeff (Taylor), George (Drake), Charles (Hinkle), just everybody charged with guarding him did a good job defending him. He got 26 points, but it took him 21 shots to do it.”

Talk about coming back to record a win after losing at Knoxville:
“We had some players that just had a bad game (at Tennessee), including myself. I just played terrible against them. I wanted to come out and establish myself early, play hard and help the team get the win.

“I think Kentucky is No. 1 on our side (SEC East). I think beating them will get us some pub. It’s a long season and we have five games left. We just have to take them one at a time.”

Lance Goulbourne, wing

Talk about the team’s run to open a second half margin:
“I don’t even remember that run happening. Sometimes it just happens, sometimes you just get a zone. We play a lot of guys that do that, guys like Meeks. Coach told us to come out and be free and aggressive, but I came out and tried to attack every time. I tried to play to my strengths and do what I could to help the team.”

Talk about playing through injury:
“I’m pretty hurt now. My groin is throbbing right now, but I just have to play through it and wait until the season ends (to heal). When I’m in the game, I rarely feel it. You’re just running up and down the court, the adrendelin gets going, the crowd is into it, and I’m into it. “

“At one point, I told felt the court shaking. I’ve never felt ever. It’s a great feeling to know the fans are behind you.”

Billy Gillespie, Kentucky Head Coach

On rebounding:
“It was the entire game, or at least the biggest part of it. We had 15 defensive rebounds. If you have that few on the road, you’re going to get dominated.”

On Vanderbilt’s 40 free throws:
“They deserved them, They were very aggressive. They played well as a team, they moved around, and they deserved to win.”

On team’s effort:
“Those guys played their tails off, but we didn’t play smart. We competed hard, but didn’t execute on offense. We would get discouraged and our defense started lacking. We played well in the first half, but didn’t carry out enough assignments to make us catch up.”

On Vanderbilt’s effort:
“When you don’t make plays, your margin for error is destroyed. Not all of your plays are going to work. We thought we could drive it against them. When we got into the paint, we didn’t get fouled enough and we finished with no plays and no points. It’s not a very good solution to win. We were in good shape in halftime, and when we came back, they took the ball from us and got on a roll. We got further away from helping each other the further ahead Vanderbilt got.”

On Kentucky’s position now versus their first meeting with Vanderbilt:
“I don’t care what month it is, you shouldn’t be making mistakes of that magnitude period…but especially not at this point in the season. Mistakes will be made, but we have to try to cut that back. We had some success with Jodie (Meeks) and his 3-point shooting, but our stats don’t show success.”

Kentucky Players

Jodie Meeks, guard

On Vanderbilt defense:
“They did a good job on defense tonight. They tried to deny me the ball as much as possible. I had a tough time making shots tonight. They did the same things against me earlier in the season.”

On start of second half:
“We have to do a better job of getting open shots whether its though setting picks or switching over.”

On missing Patrick Patterson on the court:
“It was tough tonight. Patrick is a big part of our offense. When he’s not out there, we face adversity but he’ll get back out there as soon as possible.”

On giving up second-chance points:
“Patrick (Patterson) is such a big part of our team on the offensive and defensive end of the floor. We gave away some rebounds but its still not an excuse. We have to box out better and rebound better.”

On playing at Vanderbilt:
“Every SEC game is difficult to win, but Vanderbilt played well tonight and usually play well here.”

On team’s rebounding effort:
“I thought we played Vandy well but there were some areas that we were lagging in. We could have done a better job getting defensive rebounds.”

On possibly not making NCAA Tournament:
“We want to make the NCAA Tournament every year but were going to try to close out strong and get wins.”

Perry Stevenson, forward

On the game:
“We were out-rebounded and you can’t do that and get a win. I could have played better tonight. They have some big guys in the paint and they’re hard to get around. We also weren’t scoring efficiently.”

On not having Patrick Patterson:
“He probably could have gotten most of the rebounds. He’s a huge void to fill.”