Post-Game Quotes: Northwestern State 111, Auburn 92
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

Nov. 15, 2013

Auburn Basketball 2013-14
Northwestern State at Auburn
Friday, Nov. 15, 2013

Auburn head coach Tony Barbee
On the game...
"I thought we did a lot of good things tonight. I thought we had a chance at the half. I told this team coming in to the game because of their style of play this team is never out. I don't know if we took that for granted."

On the defense...
"Our defense was almost non-existent. To have a team score 72 points in half and score 111 in our building, after holding them to 34 percent in the first half, is unacceptable."

On how Northwestern State attacked the basket...
"It's because they got the majority up in transition. We work on transition defense, keeping teams from getting early points, and we weren't able to do that the last 16 minutes."

On Auburn's shooting...
"I thought we had great looks. We've got really good shooters. We missed layups, and we didn't shoot it the way we are capable of."

On the early season loss...
"It's not disappointing. It's a long season. It's a learning experience, and we have to get back in the gym and get better from it."

On defensive breakdowns...
"We had way too many breakdowns the last 15 minutes. Out of our zone, out of our man. But the majority of it came out of transition. That's where they got the momentum. It goes back to the defensive end. It wasn't sharp for 40 minutes."

On Auburn's shooters...
"We've got a team that we should have multiple guys in double figures. We should have five or six guys in double figures. We've got to have more presence out of our post players."

Senior guard Chris Denson
On initial reaction...
"It's frustrating. We just let go of the rope. We don't have anybody to blame but ourselves. It's just a learning experience. Other than me, Asauhn, KT, and Allen, it's a very young team. We've just got to learn to finish games."

On Northwestern State's offense...
"They're a transition team. As you see they got the ball out really fast. They always looked up for transition threes and that's mainly what they were doing. They hit a lot of tough shots, contested tough shots."

On losing 14 point lead in the second half...
"We always talk about when we're up to beat a team into submission, but tonight we didn't do that. It's very disappointing but we've got a long season ahead of us."

On affecting the teams new start...
"Everybody is still on the upside. Everybody is hurting right now but we can't get down on ourselves. We've got a long season ahead of us. It's only been two games and that was a very good Northwestern State team. They're going to the tournament again this year. We've got a lot of young guys so they weren't really used to something like this. I'm just looking forward to the rest of the season."

On using this game as a measuring stick...
"We measured up well. It's just frustrating because we were up, we had it. We just let go of the rope. It happens like that in practice sometimes where we have a good practice but we die down at the end. It all translates to the game, but we're going to work on that. We won't let it happen again."

On defensive breakdowns...
"That's all on us, just being alert and aware. We were alert and aware in the first half and we were still up by 9. The second half we just thought we had the game won. So that's when we got lazy. The transition play they were in was how they made a lot of threes and got the lead back down. So that was just us not being alert and aware in the second half."

Northwestern State Head Coach Mike McConathy

Opening Statement...
"We are excited because we came into a good program, a well-coached team, and we are able to walk away with the victory tonight. We are excited about it because it is one of those things, when you play as many of these games I have played on the road as a coach in fifteen years, it is nice to be able to go get one.

I thought our kids responded well to the adjustments we made from halftime to go into what we really have not even worked on at 1-2-2, and we spread the floor out well, and of course we had five guys on the floor during most of the second half. Normally we are rotating people, but most of those guys all were players that have been with us except Jalen for more than one year, and then when Zikiteran Woodley went in; he is just a freshman.

I thought they responded well and I thought that was a big difference in the second half, of course making shots and Jalen making shots was huge, but I thought the biggest difference in the game for us was we rebounded the basketball in the second half. When the big man went out, he came in there and got five offensive rebounds like that, it seemed like in the first half they get out to 13 or 14-point lead, but our kids did not break and I think that is a lot of credit to them because they have a lot of confidence in their abilities."

On beating an SEC team...
"Well, I think one thing we have to remember is that I have been at this level and we have played in so many of these games. The mindset is that you are not supposed to win and my approach is that you are supposed to win and you have to understand you are supposed to. It is a big deal for us because you go and get a road win. You are not supposed to win on the road anyway in college basketball, so then to be able to go into an SEC school or a Big 12 school makes a huge difference. It was a big win, but I think the mindset of the staff to continually tell them what is expected in them, we believe in them, and we never got down on them. We just knew we needed to correct what we needed to do."

On shooting a lot...
"Well when we look at free throws we were 86% tonight and we were 85.7% last Friday. We can shoot the basketball, but I do not know what it was last Friday night. I do not know if it was because it was the first night out, but I knew we were not going 0- for- 17 again, so that law of averages came into play and it was just one of those things. We just shot the ball so poorly and in the first half when they went to their 2-1-2, it really affected us because they pushed us so far out. We made a few shots but we were taking a lot that we did not need to be taking, I felt like when made a few there and were able to get in the flow of the game and it made a lot of difference."

On effort from Zikiteran Woodley...
"He is an unusual young man. He is great player and a great kid. He does not talk. He just plays basketball, and he plays for us where nobody else would play him where he needs to play. He plays in the hole because he is 6-2 and everybody thinks you have to put him out on guard."

Sophomore guard Jalen West
On the victory...
"I think it is pretty big. During the game when we went down 13 in the second half some of our players were getting down and some of them were encouraging the younger players that we were going to fight back and win the game. Before the game all of our coaches were telling us that we are supposed to win this game and we are supposed to come in and beat this team and that is the mindset we came in with and I think it helped.

On redemption after tournament loss last season...
"Yes sir. I think losing in the tournament like that was pretty bad. We disappointed our conference, our coaches, family and friends."