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Ohio 78, Valparaiso 75

Nov. 23, 2010

Recap |  Final Stats

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Head Coach John Groce

On the game:

I thought our poise was really good which will build great confidence for our team. We were in this situation a number of times last season in non-conference play and I thought the execution of our press offense was good. We stepped up and knocked down free throws and successfully executed switching on defense.

When we got up 31-16, they (Valpo) showed great resiliency to go up one at the half. Give them credit for that, but we contributed several things to it that we can do better. We fouled too much and had four of our bigs on the bench with two and that hurt us because that’s where our advantage was on offense, thus we quit throwing the ball inside.

We turned it over 12 times in the first half. That’s not us. Those turnovers led to breakouts for them and we made some mistakes in our transition defense. They are a very good offensive basketball team and I knew going in that they would have some matchup problems for us with a 4 man playing 5 and a 3 man playing 4. I was happy that we held them to 41 percent shooting so we did some good things.

 Forward Asown Sayles

On his shooting:

I’ve been shooting it well in practice and Coach has confidence in me shooting. I was just looking to take open shots and make them. Being a senior and a captain, my team is going to look for me in situations like this to help keep the team together.

On playing in a close game:

Games like this will give us a lot of confidence moving forward because a lot of the MAC games are going to be close.

Guard Tommy Freeman

On Ohio establishing a presence inside:

We really focused a lot on that in practice yesterday. We knew we were going to have an advantage inside and Coach made it clear he wanted the ball going inside.

On his and Sayles’ 3-pointers late in the second half:

We were kind’ve trading baskets in the second half and, even though we were focused on getting stops, Asown came up and hit a big one and luckily I got one to go down late to give us a little cushion. We were able to put enough together to pull it out in the end.

On playing against Kansas this weekend:

We’ve just got to focus on playing the way we play regardless of the opponent. We have to stick to what we do and not get out of character. Guys just need to play their role to be best of their ability because our coaches will have us ready.