Postgame Comments: La Salle at GW
Feb. 24, 2010
NCAA MEN'S BASKETBALL
La Salle 72
GW Coach Karl Hobbs
"I thought it was a very tough game for us. It was a game that was back and forth. Rodney Green is one of the better players in the league, and he stepped up to take control in the 2nd half. I thought we showed some growth tonight. We were down six, but we kept our composure, and then went on a little bit of a run ourselves to regain our composure....Joseph [Katuka] played a terrific game. He really established the inside and came up with some huge rebounds for us. He had some good finishes, and it was nice to see him knock down those free throws."
Why was it hard to pull away from La Salle?
"They're size and their experience really bothered us. And they're a pretty good basketball team. They keep the game at a pretty good pace. They've been there before, and all league games are tough. It's very rare in league play where you see someone blown out."
Talk about the growth of your freshmen down the stretch.
"Dwayne [Smith] was terrific from the standpoint of making terrific decisions about when to drive the ball to the basket, and when to pull up for the jump shots. Lasan [Kromah] really kept his poise. The 3 wasn't going for him, so he started to attack the rim. Some of his passes were erratic, but outside of that, he played a magnificent game. Every day, he's reminding me more of Richard Hamilton. There's no doubt he's going to be that kind of player."
GW Freshman G Lasan Kromah
How did your approach change when the 3s weren't falling?
"I wasn't really on, so I decided not to take shots just because I was open. I was going to drive and use another aspect of my game. And it worked for me."
You went through a scoring lull for several games. Do you feel like
you've picked it back up?
"As the year goes on, I'm getting more comfortable with my role on the team. I'll do whatever the coaches tell me to help our team win."
GW Freshman F Dwayne Smith
What got you going early in this game?
"I just came to play. I knew this was a game we needed to win. I had that mentality that we were going to win, no matter what. All of us had that mindset."
La Salle coach John Giannini
"I thought we played extremely hard. As usual, we probably made one mistake per person...[GW] got some big defensive rebounds against us late, we had some guys get off to bad starts in the beginning of the second half, and it's really like one play per person. If they could give you one more good play a piece, that's the difference in the game...Free throws have been a big problem in the last couple of games, so if you make more free throws or a 3 here and there, or one fewer mistake, you have a chance to win. I can't fault our effort to a great extent. I think our kids were really trying hard."
When it was tied at 67, what led to things unraveling? "[GW's] greatest strength is that they pushed the ball really hard and they're a great rebounding team. They got 3 or 4 easy baskets in transition, they got some second shots, and it was as simple as that."
On La Salle's lack of depth compared with GW's
"We have empirical evidence that we lead the country in bad luck. [laughs] There's no other team in the country that has as many points out as we do. We have two guys left who played GW last year. The year will always have difficult memories not just because of the difficulties, but because of what could have been. We might have been able to do something special."
On GW's dominance inside
"They did out-muscle us inside...We have two guys who have played before, a former walk-on, and four freshman, and they're learning by fire. And [Joseph] Katuka was an excellent teacher today. There's no question he out-muscled us and outfought us for some key rebounds."
What did you tell the team in the time-out that turned things right around?
"I was displeased. ...We had some people giving up some easy baskets, and we stepped it up after that time-out."