OU-UT Arlington Postgame Quotes

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
DECEMBER 17, 2013

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Head Coach Lon Kruger
Opening comment:
“It was a good win, a fortunate win. I thought UTA did a terrific job of hanging in there close all night long and making shots to keep it within reach. Then they catch us there late. It was a good opportunity for us to work on some things. We haven’t been in that situation a lot; not that we wanted to be there. I thought our guys handled both the defensive end and offensive end pretty well late. We converted a couple of times and got a couple of stops there to create a little bit of a margin again. Cam (Clark) was real big all night long and knocked down a couple of free throws to give us a two-point margin there late. They did a really good job of containing in transition, they got the timeout, then we had a breakdown and they got an open shot at the buzzer. Good win, there’s a lot to work on and we have to get a lot better.”

On struggling to stop dribble penetration:
“It’s been a struggle all year long. We have been making a little bit of progress at it. We probably need to give them credit, but still, we need to work a little harder. (It makes it tougher) when they’re so quick and can shoot the 3. That’s the toughest of matchups when you have to kind of press up a little bit to contest the 3 and they can also go by you. We just have to work harder at it, maintain our battles and play back and still try to be as aggressive as possible.”

On if their strategy on the last defensive possession was to force a 2-pointer:
“Well, it’s not like we were in a position to make them do anything. It’s just a matter of making them shoot a guarded shot, is the hope. We expected it to go inside coming out of the huddle. You can get up and pressure 3’s at that point a little bit easier. We didn’t talk about either one. We just wanted to guard the ball, switch ball screens, contest shooters without fouling, those types of things. Just basic stuff.”

On when Jordan Woodard came out in the first half and UTA went on a run:
“Yeah, we didn’t handle that very well when Jordan was out. We turned it over a couple of times, they got their heads up, they made their run during that time. We have to do a better job with that. It’s not just Isaiah (Cousins) at that point, it’s all five (guys) on the floor. We have to understand that things are different and we have a special package to get through those minutes effectively and not just hold our own. We need to be aggressive during those minutes and throughout the entire ball game.”

On needing relief from the bench, especially with Je’lon Hornbeak out due to injury:
“For the most part we have gotten good relief from the bench. Tonight, I didn’t sense there was a lot of energy there off the bench. Some of the starters went long minutes. It’s a little unusual that we haven’t had help off the bench that we have kind of banked on all year.”

Senior Forward Cameron Clark
On the Sooners’ offensive pace fitting his playing style:
“When we get out in transition, that is where I excel. My teammates do a great job of finding me -- Jordan (Woodard), Buddy (Hield). We just try to break the press and knock down shots.”

On his endurance:
“We just have to go hard. That is what the coaches tell us. We try to play every possession like it is our last. We give 100 percent every time.”

On his what was going through his mind at the free throw line at the end of the game:
“Just knocking down those free throws. I wasn’t really paying attention to the crowd or anything like that. My team needed me and I was able to knock down two free throws.”

On if he had made game-winning free throws before:
“In high school, but this is much bigger.”

Sophomore Guard Buddy Hield:
On the team’s defensive performance:
“We just can’t rely on our scoring all the time. We have to stay focused and locked in. As leaders, Cam and I need to do a better job of getting our guys to slide our feet. Me, I am always on the ball so I have to come out more and pressure the ball more. We have to find a way to stop guys from penetrating in the paint. We need to start being more aggressive and stop being tentative on defense.”



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