Post-Game Quotes: Auburn 77, Boston College 67
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

Dec. 22, 2013

Auburn Basketball 2013-14
Boston College at Auburn
Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013

Auburn Head Coach Tony Barbee
On playing with the lead...
"Well, we have had a habit of getting a lead, just like we did against Clemson and in previous games, and easing up. The fortunate thing tonight was that the lead was big enough for Boston College to overcome. They are a tough team. They have played an incredibly tough schedule. We knew they were going to be desperate coming in to get a win before the break. I am proud of the way our guys started and finished, because we did a lot of great things tonight. They shoot and make a lot of threes. I am proud of the way we guarding the 3-point line. We made our free throws which was big. Our assist-to-turnover ratio was great, 2-to-1. We played for each on the floor the entire time."

On KT Harrell's performance...
"KT was big. I have been waiting for the breakout. He has been playing well all year. He is averaging 18 points per game. He has had several nights, probably four or five, where he has had these type of games in front of him. KT is a guy who sometimes struggles with self-confidence. I have been on him to keep going and keep pushing and keep fighting. Tonight he was aggressive."

On Tahj Shamsid-Deen's performance...
"Tahj did a great job. They came at him a little bit with their pressure and trapping. He did a good job of orchestrating the press when we switched up our press attack. He did a great job of running the team as a freshman against very talented and experienced guards they have in Joe Rahon and Olivier Hanlan."

On getting two big wins before the break...
"It was big to get them, but the practices were even bigger. These guys have been fighting and they have responded all year long. I am proud of them. They are starting to get the identity that we are trying to embody. We are still not there yet. We are taking baby steps. At the same time, I am proud of the staff. The staff had a great game plan that they put together for how we wanted to go after and guard an unconventional offense like Boston College. We are not going to see another offense like that the rest of the season. They are skilled at all five positions. They shoot the three well with their timing. I thought we guarded it really well."

On Auburn's late run in the first half...
"Our defense sparked our run. We kept talking about it. In that last four minutes is when we got separation. We got stops and we are really good in transition, but it is hard to get in transition when you don't get stops."

On scoring more in the paint in the second half...
"It is how the game flowed, because Chris Denson had some open looks that didn't go down. KT (Harrell) had some open looks that didn't go down, even though he made two in the second half. When we got the lead like we did and got under that eight minute mark, I told the guys let's not settle. We had to get close to the bonus so that it would flip on them. I wanted them to be aggressive in the last eight to 10 minutes and not settle for jumpers."

On the delay of game in the second half...
"I told them to keep their focus. It might have worked in our favor a little bit, because they had momentum at that point, and they came out of that and grasped the momentum at that point. I just told our guys, because they took away the under eight-minute timeout at that point, instead of having what would have been 1:39, there was another five minute stretch. I told them let's treat this like the start of the second half. I thought the guys did a good job of doing that."

Junior guard KT Harrell
On tonight...
"I was just aggressive. I hit like three in a row and I was just trying to be aggressive in the beginning."

Self-confidence...
"Not really self-confidence, I am confident in myself. Coach Barbee challenges me a lot and I accept every challenge he gives me. It was one of those I hear you Coach and I got you."

1st Half...
"We made a good run. It all starts with defense. We try to bring it every night and every time we play."

On offense...
"It just starts from our point guard. Tahj Shamsid-Deen and Malcolm Canada are doing a great job trying to find an open guy. We need both of them, they are great leaders on the court."

On his flow...
"I think it has been more of me working on my shots. Just accepting challenges from Coach (Barbee). He tells me he needs more from me, so I am going to keep on doing that as much as I can. Try to help the team as much as I can offensively and defensively."

On 2nd half...
"We have a different team now. A couple of games ago, stuff like this would happen and we would put our heads down over (our opponent) making that run. We have a different fight about ourselves. It didn't really affect us; we knew we had to make stops and continue to be aggressive offensively and that is what we did."

On goal being switched out...
"I didn't even know what was going on. I just thought something was going on with the clock, but I didn't know they were going to switch the whole goal. But we just stayed focused on what we had to do."

Last time scored 29 points...
"Probably senior year in high school. I just wanted to win. So do whatever I had to do to help us."

Freshman Point Guard Tahj Shamsid-Deen
On pressure in 2nd half...
"I don't think it was really much of a challenge. There was one time where Allen Payne and I just were not on the same page, but after that little mishap we handled it pretty well and we were able to get into offense without any trouble."

About break...
"We get a couple days to rest, but we definitely have our mind on our next opponent. We will back on Thursday ready to work."

On beating two ACC schools back to back...
"It means a lot to us. We let a couple go and people view that as bad losses. So it is good to get two teams that people know about that have nationally recognized players and get the win against those teams. It feels pretty good. We are trying to have a new culture here. So we are going to start expecting to win. We always expect to win, but we are trying to put that in other people's minds as well."

Boston College Head Coach Steve Donahue
On team's performance...
"We came out and didn't play well from the start. I give Auburn credit. They stayed with it and really played well, especially in the first half. I give our team a lot of credit. We came back in the second half, competed and got the deficit down to single digits. It seemed like every time we had a wide-open shot, we couldn't make it in. The same goes with foul shots and layups. We just shot ourselves in the foot. I give Auburn a lot of credit. I thought they played well. Their past games they got beat pretty badly, and have played two really good last games."

On second half run...
"When you're down by 20 points, you do what you can. I thought we outplayed them in stretches, but it's a high mountain to climb. We made really good plays, and we missed some free throws here and there. We had some wide-open 3-point shots that we missed. When you are down by that many points, those are critical shots. It could have cut their lead down to five or four, and then it would have been just a regular game."

On defending the 3-point line...
"It's been out Achilles' heel. We've done a poor job at penetration lately. We probably over helped and didn't close out well."

On what the team can take away from the game...
"We played a lot of road games. We played a lot of tough scenarios. We didn't play our best basketball. We're still trying to find simple things like a rotation and who will be in at certain times. We have to get stronger. We're going to learn from this, and there is still a lot of basketball to be played. I have great belief that we will be a great basketball team. We just have to stay with it."

Forward Olivier Hanlan
On today's game...
"I think we played the second half, but obviously we started slow. In college basketball when you play any team, you just can't expect to have a big second half and be able to come back when you are down 20 points at halftime."

On his performance...
"I was trying to be aggressive, and whenever I'm aggressive good things happen. I do what I do best. Today I didn't get too many assists, but I just try to focus on being aggressive on both sides of the ball and hopefully good things come out of it."

On team's second half performance...
"You can't expect to not show up in the first half and win the game, even if we beat them in the second half. Credit to Auburn. We need to work on having that same edge we have in the second half and bring it to the first half."

On road games...
"We don't' have the easiest schedule in the country. We have a lot of road games. Whoever you play on the road whether it is a good team or a bad team, it is still harder to win. We will rest up for a few days and get ready for Harvard. We'll bounce back and get ready for ACC play."