Dec. 18, 2010

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No. 8 Pitt 97, Maryland Eastern Shore 64; Petersen Events Center, December 18, 2010


Quoting Pitt Head Coach Jamie Dixon

Opening Statement


“It was a good win for us, and a good night with our offense. I’ve been happy with our progression as the year has gone on, with our ball movement and execution; we showed that with getting the 33 assists tonight. That speaks volumes. I’m happy with our unselfishness, and with how we shot the ball. Our movement without the ball has really been strong for the last couple of weeks. We did a good job on the glass. Maryland Eastern Shore is a good team. I think they’ll be at the top of their league at the end of the season; they just get worn down with all these road games at the start. We had strong ball movement and offensive movement. We made some strides this week.”


On getting 33 assists:


“It was great to see the guys work together. Gilbert Brown is making shots and still making passes at the end. He had a drive there at the end where he could have shot the ball, but took the assists instead. We’re known for our unselfishness, but 33, even for our standards really sticks out. That’s an unbelievable number. Our motion and movement is getting better. I think it’s heading in the right direction, especially where we’re going offensively. We have room to improve, but I like where it’s going.”


On Gilbert Brown’s performance:


“I know people focus on the negatives when he’s on a streak like this. It’s hard to have big numbers every game. I like where he’s going. The three weeks out really set him back, but he’s improving. I like where he’s coming from and where he’s going for right now. He played good defense tonight, took good shots and had some offensive rebounds. We need to get him more layups and free throw attempts at the line. He needs to get points in other areas. I think he started slowly early this year because of the injuries, but I like where he’s at right now and where he’s going to be.”


“He moved well without the ball, and came off of screens well. He often times sets some screens and makes himself open by doing it. Most of the shots that he got were reversals of the ball that started with his movement. We have some guys that are playing at a high level right now in Gilbert Brown, Ashton Gibbs and Travon Woodall.”


On the transition defense:


“We have room to improve. I think that it’s something that we’ve been harping on all year long. We haven’t felt that has been good enough. It’s a combination of different things. When you’re a good offensive rebound team like we are, you have to give-and-take. What we saw in the last game and in previous games is the communication. We’ve got guys back, but aren’t matched up appropriately. That’s part of experience and time – getting guys playing together and getting used to one another. That’s something that will get better.”


On the overall game:


“First and foremost was doing well with finals and focusing on that. It’s never ideal during this time of the year, but you try to get as much out of it as you can. The one thing we really focused on was communication on defense.  Some people like to call us an old team, but when you look at the numbers, ages, years and experience of our guys it doesn’t really reflect that. Playing together is really a part of that. Travon Woodall, JJ. Richardson and Dante Taylor are sophomores while J.J. Moore, Lamar Patterson and Talib Zanna are all freshmen. We need to get used to playing together, and with the transition defense that will all come together.”


Quoting Pitt’s Gilbert Brown


On having a breakout game:


“I don’t have it completely figured out yet, but I felt good in practice all week. I came into the game with a mindset of no hesitation. I felt that I wasn’t playing to my potential and I think if we all can come out and play aggressive we can all play to the best of our abilities.”


On having 28 points:


“I don’t look at stats like that, all that matters is the success of the team and my 28 points helped that. It’s good to be consistent. I think that if I keep doing what I’m doing, practicing hard, executing, working on my shots and putting in the extra work, I think that I can put up more games like this one and play to my potential.”


On his hot shooting:


“It’s different for every team that we play. In other games, I may not get as many opportunities as some other guys, but we try to get the ball into the hot player’s hands.  We’re diverse and anybody could get hot on the team. We don’t rely on one player to score all of our points.”


Quoting Pitt’s Gary McGhee


On Gilbert’s game:


“It’s good to see him play well. He was aggressive and he got into flow early on and he was making shots. Coach Dixon stresses to us that we want to get the ball to the player with the highest energy and tonight it was Gilbert. He was hitting his jumpers. I don’t think I realized it until I looked up at the board and saw that he had 24 and I thought to myself, ‘he’s scoring.’ and he helped us get the win.”


Quoting Maryland Eastern Shore Head Coach Frankie Allen


Opening Statement:


“Pitt was just too much for us. You can look at the stats and see we were really out-classed. Pitt is going to go a long way as the year progresses. It was a good experience for us. I thought at times during the game we competed. We didn’t go inside a lot because of the size advantage that they had, so we shot some three’s and tried to stay close. All in all, this is one of those games where you come in and try to look for some positives. The one thing I take away from this game is that I give the kids credit. They battled as hard as they could, but we were just playing a talented team that has an opportunity to make a run in the Big East and the NCAA this year.”


On Pitt’s Gilbert Brown


“He shot the ball really well. He shoots it like that all the time. I know our defense. We knew going in about Ashton Gibbs, so we tried to pack our defense in. When they started making shots over the top, we wanted to do a better job by packing our defense in and being able to catch. But he was outstanding tonight. I know from a coaching standpoint, Coach Dixon has to be really pleased.  A lot of teams will pack it in on Pitt, so they don’t use their size advantage as strong as they do. When you start making shots like that it opens up a lot of things. He was outstanding tonight.”


On the first half

“That’s the part I feel good about. Unfortunately, you have to play 40 minutes and they have too much depth, too much talent. We knew pretty soon they were going to pick it up. We weren’t able to play for 40 minutes. But to play as long as we did, 26 or 22 minutes, we had them on the ropes. Then Coach Dixon took a time out and probably told them to go to work. You’ve got Maryland Eastern Shore coming in and playing a team like Pitt and they have a lot more weapons than we do. We could have played maybe an 18 minute game, but unfortunately, you’ve got 40 minutes to play.”

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