OU-OSU Postgame Quotes

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
FEBRUARY 15, 2014

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Head Coach Lon Kruger
Opening comment:
“It was a really hard-fought game all the way; there was never a lot of margin. I thought both teams left it all out there. I thought Oklahoma State dictated the majority of the second half and we didn't quite have the rhythm we like to have. But I’m really proud of our guys down the stretch. They hung in there, kept fighting, made some big shots late and made all their free throws. I'm really happy for them. Big win, huge as Bedlam always is. I couldn’t be any more proud for our guys."

On OU's late 3-pointers:
"They were big shots. Ryan (Spangler) did a good job of driving and setting a screen for us on the first one. Then Buddy's patience on the second one was the key because he could have rushed a guarded shot but he pump faked, took his time and shot it with good rhythm. Frank (Booker) a little earlier made big shots. Ryan was big on the boards all day. Tyler Neal I thought was great in the first half especially, and fought like crazy. A lot of different guys stepped up and hit big shots late."

Freshman Guard Frank Booker
On his first trip to Stillwater:
“It was not really a big deal. I came in here ready to shoot and do my role. Other than that, I played defense and just knocked down shots.”

Sophomore Forward Ryan Spangler
On coming out strong in the first half:
“It was big. I try to do the little things for my team to win. The things I do kind of bring energy to the team. If I’m able to start a game by getting some offensive rebounds, some tough rebounds, and maybe getting some people open with screens, that’s just going to allow us to be a better team. I’m just going to keep working on coming out strong and letting my team get in a rhythm and just keep going.”

On Oklahoma State without Marcus Smart:
“Well with him, I think he gets them going, but other guys stepped up. Everybody for them today was hitting shots. They were just as hard to guard. He’s a great player, but I think they were good today, too. But we were able to get the win.”

Sophomore Guard Buddy Hield
On finding a way to win a close game after recent struggles:
“Coach told us to keep playing together and make the extra passes. We did that. Frank (Booker) started making shots and Je’lon (Hornbeak) came in and made a big bucket. Cameron (Clark) had a big three. Everybody played their role and we started playing together as a group. When we play together as a group, good things happen for us. We were able to do it in the last minute stretch.”

On personally coming back and having a strong game:
“Coaches and my teammates keep telling me to shoot the ball, and I’ve been shooting the ball all my life so I’m not going to stop. I had some great looks in the (Texas) Tech game that just didn’t go down. The coaching staff and my family — everybody is giving me the confidence to shoot the ball. I kept my confidence and I was able to knock down some shots late in the game for us.”

On his two late threes:
“Coach (Kruger) called two good plays for me and I was able to execute and knock down shots and try to get a win for my teammates.” 

OSU Head Coach Travis Ford
On the loss to Oklahoma:
"I thought our guys played hard and came out with a lot of spirit and a lot of energy. They made three threes down the stretch that were obviously big for them. If they miss any of those, it's a different game, but that's why you play the game. They made good shots. We couldn't make our free throws. I think we missed six or seven 1-and-1s. That's 14 points that we get no points out of. That hurts. We've got to make our free throws. We are normally pretty good at it. The guys played hard, but they just made shots down the stretch. Our defense just wasn't good enough down the stretch as far as getting the stops we needed when we needed them."

On Oklahoma's go-ahead three pointer:
"On the last three they hit, we aren't supposed to be helping off on (Ryan) Spangler driving. It was just a defensive mistake. If it was someone else driving it, that's a different story, but we talked about certain guys that you don't help off of. We just made a defensive mistake. They made (threes). Give them credit. We had a three late in the game that was wide open as well. It just didn't go in. We had a good look at the end of the game for a tying three that was a really good look. So give them credit. We had a couple of open shots that we didn't convert, and they converted theirs."

On bouncing back from this loss:
"We've got to dig in. We've got to bounce back. They're down. This is as down of a locker room that I've seen. We just need to keep our head up and understand that there is a lot of basketball left to be played. This effort was better, but we've got to finish the game out a little bit better. It doesn't get any easier going out on the road. We've just got to keep our heads up, spirit up, and continue to motivate them and keep their heads up, as we've been doing."

On the players' fatigue:
"That's the other thing. We had some tired guys out there. That doesn't help, but they're giving it everything they've got so we've got to make sure that they definitely get their rest."

OSU Senior Guard Markel Brown
On being more competitive than against Texas:
"We just wanted go out there and play with a sense of pride. We played team ball, played help-side defense, tried to help if someone was beat off the dribble, and tried to recover to shooters. We went out there and gave it a team effort."

On the last shot:
"Coach (Ford) wanted us to rush the ball up the court. They kind of double-teamed me, I lost track of time and fired up a shot, praying it would go in. I thought I took the right shot, it just didn't fall."

On whether some of the preseason goals are still within reach:
"Most definitely. We still have a lot of games. We have to pick up a couple (of wins) and make a run in the Big 12 Tournament. We still have plenty of time. Going on the road at Baylor will be a winnable game. We have to go out there and play with pride, play with heart and give it all we have. We have time to make a run."

OSU Sophomore Guard Phil Forte
On the struggles at the free-throw line:
"We usually make our free throws. It's something we usually take a lot of pride in. I think it help cost us the game. We just have to continue to work on them in practice."

On what it will take to get back on track:
"We can't feel sorry for ourselves, because nobody else will feel sorry for us. I want to do this for Marcus (Smart), Markel (Brown) and Le'Bryan (Nash). They came back for us. I want to finish this season right for them, and so does everyone else. All we have is each other right now. We have to stay close as a group. We hit the court again on Monday, so we need to regroup quickly. It will be a tough road test." 

On the close losses:
"Obviously we've been losing close games lately, and it's frustrating. We just have to get over that hump. Last year, we were on the other side of a lot of these games. We're there at the end of these games, we just have to close them out. We just have to make more plays. It comes down to a play or two —mwhether its a rebound or a loose ball, that's what we have to get right now. That's where we are falling short."



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