Auburn vs. Missouri State Postgame Quotes

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

Nov. 14, 2008

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Auburn Player Quotes

Korvotney Barber, F
On beginning the season...
"It went well tonight. Missouri State is a real good team and they made us defend the whole shot clock. I was winded after having to defend the whole shot clock. We played pretty well as a team; however, free throws killed us. We played pretty well offensively. We have practice in the morning at 8:30 and I am pretty sure we will be doing a lot of defensive drills."

On your personal performance...
"Coming back into the season after being out half of last year is really exciting for me. I get a little winded, especially after having to defend a team that makes you guard the whole shot clock."

On free throws...
"I think people just get too anxious. We get nervous coming to the free throw line. Personally, I try to block everybody out and concentrate on making the free throws."

Lucas Hargrove, F
On starting the season...
"This year we have a lot of depth. Last year we lost our first game, so it is good to get off to a win this year."

On defending Missouri State...
"It is tough defending anyone, when they are quick and run the ball the whole shot clock. It is a real challenge to defend teams like that, but we just had to dig deep and do it."

On overall team performance...
"In the exhibition game, we scored a lot of points, but defensively we played terrible. I think we played much better tonight. Today, we held Missouri State to 60 points and that is good against a great team."

On free throws...
"Free throws are more of a mental game than anything. Physically, it is easy to make free throws, but you have to focus in and make the shot when you are fatigued."

Head Coach Jeff Lebo
Opening Statement...
"Obviously, their game plan was to make us defend for long periods of time, which they did. Defensively, for most the game, we did an outstanding job. We only had 20 field goals, 11 of those from the three point line, some of those which were very tough shots.

"Their game plan of making us defend for long periods of time was excellent. I told our team at half time that this was great, it's like a 40-minute defensive drill. Our players don't like that, but it's good for us to play a team like Missouri State; they are disciplined and tough.

"We shot poorly from the foul line. If we would have done better there, we would have won more easily. I thought their toughness in the second half was exceptional; they're a good basketball team that is used to winning. They weren't going to go away, but we did a good job moving the ball around and getting some points in the paint."

On having the advantage inside...
"We thought Missouri State were young inside. Missouri State were playing some freshman that haven't played along with another sophomore that didn't play much last year, so we thought we would be able to get the ball inside to Korvotney Barber a little bit. They pressured the perimeter a lot, so we thought we could move the ball inside a little more than usual."

On Missouri State using the whole shot clock...
"They weren't going to shoot quick. They were going to run a pattern offense, what we call a flex offense, they ran a little bit of a motion offense, and were very deliberate in making us defend the entire shot clock. What happens with that, they're just looking for a break down and just waiting, waiting, waiting. Missouri State was trying to shorten the game and possessions."

On getting the ball down low...
"I was pleased the way we got the ball down to Korvotney Barber. Brendon Knox made some nice plays too. Brendon Knox got the ball down low to the post. We also got a couple inside to Lucas Hargrove. We made some nice passes and finishes around the rim. On the positives, defensively we did a nice job. Besides the foul line, we shot 56% from the field."

Missouri State Head Coach Cuonzo Martin
On falling behind in the second half...
"I thought our guys did a good job of competing. I think at that point we had three turnovers. I think that's what killed us because they did a good job with adjusting and being physical and taking away our first and second options. We did a poor job of executing when we had the ball and then they would take the ball and score on their transition plays."

On Auburn's dominance in the paint...
"That's what happens when you're shorthanded, but that's not an excuse. When you have two freshmen guys who don't know how many minutes they'll play and, all of a sudden, you're starting one of them, it's tough. I know that they probably did a better job than I did when I was a freshman. I applaud them for their effort. It's tough when you're playing against big, physical guys who understand playing at a high level and it's tough for a freshman to compete against that."

On Isaiah Rhine's performance...
"I thought he did a good job at 19 minutes in the game. He had some good fouls. I don't think he had any bad fouls, but I don't think he did a great job in his boxing out situations. I think he did a good job competing and trying to play post defense and trying to make guys go on top of him. Like I said, it's tough when you're a true freshman playing against guys who are juniors and seniors."

On how being shorthanded changes the game plan...
"It changed a lot because the way we play defense. We like to pressure and we didn't press as much. Normally, you have five or six guys doing what two guys had to do tonight. When you play defense, you like to really get up against those guys, but we were just too fatigued tonight."

Chris Cooks, Forward
On having a shortage of players...
"We're not using that as an excuse. We compete and we've been playing hard and we felt that we could go out there and get a win tonight and it just didn't turn out that way. But we look at this as a lesson learned and we're going to move forward after this."

On what they gained most out of the game...
"We have to box out more. We need to rebound more and stop the teams in transition. We have to be smarter at the end of the game and capitalize."

On his senior play-making ability...
"I just try to score and take shots if I'm open. If I'm not open, I try to get my teammates going and penetrate and kick the ball out."