Feb. 5, 2006

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February 5, 2006

Richmond 55
@ #10 GW 80

Postgame quotes

GW Coach Karl Hobbs
How do you feel after victories against teams that often give you trouble?
"Traditionally, we've played Richmond very well at home...Today, I thought our intensity was very good. We forced them to play we want to play...our guys did a good job of dictating where we wanted the ball to go."

So many teams have tried to make Richmond play that way; what did you do that worked?
"We just want to make sure that we kept great pressure on them, put them in situations where they had to make plays. We didn't want them to get into any sort of rhythm. That played a major role in why they shot [38%]."

You scored 80 points on a team that allows an average of 54 a game. Is that an indicator of how much your offense has improved?
"I think it says more about our defense today. Our defense generated a great deal of the offense today, and that's because we play at a much faster pace. That was why we got the 80 points."

Your thoughts on playing Dayton Wednesday.
"It's going to be a bit of a track meet. They play very fast...[and] we have to try and slow them down, but yet play at our same speed. They're a team that's going to come in here with a sense of desperation because they really need to win a game. And all the games we've had with them have come down to the wire, so this game will be no different."

Do you like the progress you've seen so far this season?
"Yes I do. Teams are funny. Sometimes we'll take three steps forward, then take one step back. My goal is to get us to not take any steps back in any area. I want to get everyone playing at the top of their game, and have guys playing well every day because we don't know when our season will end. I want every day to be a good day."

Were you concerned about a letdown and the short turnaround after the Xavier game?
"No because these students don't like that. I don't worry about it when we play at home. If this game had been at Richmond, I would have had some concerns. I really think that when the girlfriends are in the stands [laughs]...Really, the students bring so much energy and make these guys play at a high level at home."



GW junior G Danilo Pinnock
Your jump shot is improving; you've obviously been working hard on it.
"For me and the coaching staff, that's like our hobby. We put a lot of work into it and it's starting to pay off. We've been doing a lot of different drills...I love to shoot already, so it's not that hard to work on."

On forcing turnovers as the game went on.
"At the beginning of the game, I was a litle timid to jump out in the passing lanes because of the style of the game. Later on, I felt we had them playing faster than they wanted to play...I really never felt like I was too fast for them; I just got lucky and they threw the ball to me."

How is the balanced attack helping you through this season?
"It's hard to prepare for us. On any give night, anyone can go off and it can hurt you. [For example, ] this wasn't Maureece's night, but he's capable of getting 20 on any night. Same with Mike Hall and Carl Elliott and myself. I'd hate to be a team that had to prepare for us, knowing that anybody can go off. What would happen if they all went off at the same time? So I think being balanced is great. It keeps those guys on their toes."

GW senior C Pops Mensah-Bonsu
On playing Richmond C Kevin Streenberge
"I always look forward to playing him. It's always a battle. He's a real good big man, and real skilled. He can shoot, he has some good post moves. I always anticipate our matchup."

How did the defense generate offense?
"We knew that they would wait until the last few seconds on the shot clock to shoot. Coach Hobbs wanted us to pressure them into making plays. That created offense for us, and we were able to convert on that."

How is the balanced attack helping you through this season?
"This is a big part of Coach Hobbs' philosophy. He wants to play 8, 9, 10 players and just be able to bring in younger guys without changing the level of intensity. He wants the defense to be the same and the score to be just as good. I think it's working and a testament to his philosophy."

Richmond Coach Chris Mooney
Could you have done anything against their pressure?
"We could have done a few things differently. [GW] is excellent at what they do. They cover so much ground, and they're so fast that it's difficult. Passes that are open one second are gone the next. In the 2nd half, we did a little better job of taking care of the ball...but our offense couldn't counteract the pressure of their defense. We couldn't score, they blocked some shots around the rim; they make the game so hard."

What do you take from this game that's encouraging?
"We have to play them again, I think that's important--can we get better for the next time we see them. We'll be at home, so we should be a little bit better. There are certain things that can change the course of the game. We get a basket, a call goes for us--if those things happen for us, it changes the course of the game."

You shot 21 threes; was that part of your game plan?
"Those are the shots they give you because when they're running back, those are the shots that are open. The game plan was to take care of the ball and get into our offense, and they wouldn't let us do that."

Richmond senior F Jermaine Bucknor
How does this GW team compare to the other A-10 teams you've played in your career?
"This is definitely the best GW team I've seen since I've been here. They're very athletic, they defend the basket down to the last guy, and they're very, very quick. They also play very well together; they pass the ball around and don't care who scores. They are very unselfish. I've seen the David West teams [and others], but this is a great team."

Was their speed an intimidation factor?
"I wouldn't say so. It's a different game. There's not another team in the Atlantic 10 that's as quick or jumps as high as GW. It's a matter of changing the gameplan to play this kind of basketball."

What cause your team's offensive problems in the first half?
"I got two quick fouls and had to sit down kind of early. That hurt me and I hurt the team a lot. That's something that I can't do. In the second half, we were able to get the ball cross-court and get into our offense quicker. In the first half, we didn't know where the holes would be, and that led to some unforced turnovers."