Vanderbilt-Purdue postgame quotes

Dec. 13, 2014

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Vanderbilt Head Coach Kevin Stallings

Opening Comments:

“It was a fun game to be a part of. I’m proud of our team. We fought hard. We played hard. We played intelligently most of the time. To go against this pressure and see that our guards had 15 assists and four turnovers, that’s good to see. It allows you to run your offense and make shots. Purdue is a good team… I like their team. I like what [Purdue Coach] Matt [Painter] is going. They’re a hard team to guard.”

On Vanderbilt Shooting 58% from the Field:

“It was our guard play. Our guards handled the ball well. I thought James [Siakam] played well for us in the first half. I thought Matt [Fisher-Davis] played well for us in the second half. [Purdue has] some long dudes in there.”

On the Confidence of Vanderbilt’s Freshmen:

“We need to have more than one good game for us to say we’re getting better from a shooting standpoint, but we won a tough, hard-fought game tonight.”

On Vanderbilt Guard Riley LaChance:

“He has a knack… He’s a fearless player… He’s an unlikely-looking guy. He’s got some dirty in him, some good dirty. He’s got some nasty in him. I like Riley.”

“He’s good with the ball and he knows it.”

On Withstanding Purdue’s Late Rally:

“Riley [LaChance] had that big three that pushed them over a bit. You get out to a lead and the other team puts their heads down and drives. Officials call fouls. That’s what happened. [Purdue] took their shooters out and put their drivers in. That’s sort of the nature of it. We made them do things they didn’t want to do. We made it tough for their big guys.”

On Scheduling More Big-Name Opponents Following Finals Week:

“We had a good week of practice. That’s atypical for us during finals week, though. We fought hard and it showed up tonight.”

On Vanderbilt’s Post Guys:

“Shelby [Moats] had a concussion in practice and didn’t dress. We knew our big guys would draw fouls, so we tried to rotate it around. James [Siakam] did a good job in the first half. [Purdue] got after Luke [Kornet] in the second half. This was a good game for Luke to feel it out.”

On Vanderbilt’s 2-2-1 Full Court Press:

“We have been working on it for a while. It’s not the first time we’ve run it. I thought we’d throw it out there and see if it helped us. I wanted to play it in front of our zone. We got a couple of turnovers out of it, but didn’t play it that much in the second half. I wanted to get back to having our defense set.”

On Facing Purdue:

“I saw some people who are near and dear to me before the game… I told the team after the game that I didn’t want to win this game any more than I wanted to win the Baylor game. If I were facing [former Purdue coach Gene] Keady, it’d be a lot different. In a lot of ways, he was Purdue… That was the guy I held in the greatest esteem there.”

Freshman G Riley LaChance

On his confidence for the game:

“I had a bad shooting game last game and just got in a jam. So I went back, worked on fundamentals and basics and my teammates did a great job of setting me up, giving me open looks and we played really well as a whole tonight.”

“Us being able to play well, and play this together against a really solid opponent is really encouraging going forward.”

On perimeter play opening up shots inside:

“When I’m hitting shots, they gotta play me and that opens up lanes for other guys too, and I think we took advantage of that. We’ve got guys who bring a lot of different stuff to the table. You can’t just dig in on one guy, and what we saw tonight is we had a bunch of guys hit some huge shots, and that really helped us tonight.”

On his opportunity to contribute early in his time at Vanderbilt:

“We knew coming in there was great opportunity for all of us freshmen. We knew we had big shoes to fill with the tradition and history here, and we were all excited about it. It’s been great so far and it’s a great opportunity we hope to make even bigger.

Senior F James Siakam

On the team’s ability to score in bunches:

“I think what gets us going is what the guys in the bench bring to the table, and I think that’s really important in moving forward. If you can make a run and sustain a run, I think our guards were tremendous. When a guy like that hits shots every night, there’s nothing you can do but go harder.”

On stepping in from the bench:

“I think that’s one of my best strengths. I just go at people and that’s what they expect of me, that’s what I give every night.”

On playing post-finals:

“Finals were stressful, so I think having to play without thinking ‘What’s next?’ or ‘What tests do I have this week?’ I think we’re pretty free-minded. I think it helped a lot to just know finals were done and I can just play basketball.”

On playing well consistently:

“I believe I’m a competitive guy and every time I go out there, I do the best to motivate my teammates and the bench has given us huge energy.”

On younger players adjusting to new offense:

“I give credit to the time these guys put in the gym. They’re always in the gym, I think it just speaks for itself. These guys work very hard, it’s not just now. The season started way back in the summer. Ten p.m. you come in the gym and see guys shooting, 12 p.m. they’re still there I think it’s just now paying off.”

Purdue head coach Matt Painter:

On the loss:

“I thought [James] Siakam, in the first half, played really hard. I thought, outside of Rapheal Davis, he played harder than anybody we had. [Damian] Jones was really good in that stretch, we just didn’t pay attention to detail a couple of times. Sometimes you get behind plays and somebody gets the ball, but we just weren’t locked in to playing post defense a couple times, and you just allow those guys to get their heads up a little bit. Riley LaChance was the difference. He got into a rhythm, he got into a groove, then he made some tough shots after that. He really played well and was efficient in what he did.”

On the battle in the post:

“I thought they did a good job contesting us a couple of times. I thought we were right at the rim with the basketball and they got a couple blocks. It wasn’t like they blocked us ten times, but the ones they did block really sent a message. I thought their bigs battled. Isaac [Haas] really had some success down there and played well. If he makes his free throws, he gets 18 [points] and seven [rebounds] in 20 minutes which is pretty good and pretty efficient. I thought Isaac did some good things down there, we’ve just got to get his free throws under control.”

On the struggles of center AJ Hammons:

“When we get the ball down there to him, we’ve got to come away with something. We’ve got to get two or three points or go to the free throw line to at least get a point out of it, get their bigs in a little more foul trouble. We have to be more productive when we get the ball down low. He needs to finish better. He’s got very good post moves and he’s very good down low when he has his balance. Sometimes he loses his balance or gets ahead of himself and just has to slow down and keep working, in the game, on post moves and be able to use the post moves we’ve worked on in practice. People give you different looks, sometimes they scrape down on him. When you’re in traffic, you can’t dribble, that’s a cardinal rule in post play and, at times, we’re dribbling the basketball when we shouldn’t be. You’ve got to kick the ball out or give a pause or a pump fake and see how they react on the perimeter. Sometimes he’s overdoing it a little, sometimes it’s his balance, and sometimes he makes a good move and just doesn’t finish at the rim. It’s a little bit of everything.”

On Rapheal Davis’ game:

“I thought Rapheal Davis really played with a sense of urgency. I thought he was ready to play, I thought he did a good job guarding [Luke] Kornet to start the game. We switched him on some different people throughout the game and he did a great job on those guys. He just couldn’t guard everybody. He played like an upperclassman, and I thought it was one of the best games he’s had at Purdue.”

On Riley LaChance’s 26 point night for Vanderbilt:

“When you don’t finish at the rim and you miss a couple shots you should take. We out-rebounded them and had fewer turnovers than them, so that’s a pretty good positive. But they shot so well from the field that I think it comes down to defense. Riley LaChance, like I said, is the difference in the game, he was great. When you allow to him a couple looks so he can really shoot the basketball and get into a rhythm, now guys like that are going to be able to make some tough ones.”

Junior G Rapheal Davis

On the team’s defensive effort on LeChance:

“I don’t think we had a focus to begin with. We let Riley LaChance to get his head up early. He may not pass the look test but he can play and shoot the basketball. We weren’t hooked up from the beginning. He got his head up and once you let a good player get his head up, he got hot and got going. We just weren’t focused on details tonight.”

On the team’s lack of composure:

“Everyone just wasn’t hooked up tonight I guess. We had a lot of fans here too so there was noise for us. The place wasn’t completely against us. It wasn’t a road game like Michigan State and Wisconsin or anything like that. We just have to be better.”

On the team’s lack of an inside/outside game offensively:

“They just took it to us early. That’s pretty much all it was. They made shots and had good post ups. They have good big men and great guard play. They have a good inside/outside game and we just weren’t hooked up and ready to play.”

Freshman F Vince Edwards

On your performance tonight:

“Individually, I felt like I let my team down tonight. I didn’t come in wired and ready to go. We got down early and dug ourselves a big hole and I just wasn’t playing hard. I didn’t play like my normal self. Freshman or not, it doesn’t matter, I’m going to take the blame for this, because I’m my biggest critic and I always have to play hard.”

On LaChance’s Shooting Performance:

“We just let them get their heads up. Riley LaChance is a good shooter and we didn’t box out and do the little things and didn’t pay attention to detail. Their bigs are something we haven’t really seen. They just played harder than us, out hustled us and they got the dirty work done.”