Cal Athletics

Cal-Furman Postgame Quotes

Cal-Furman Postgame Quotes
By Cal Athletics on Sat, December 28, 2013

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 California Head Coach Mike Montgomery 

On the game

“It was just what the doctor ordered. We needed some feel good. We kind of got beaten down here lately with Ricky [Kreklow] and Jabari [Bird] going down. Creighton handled us pretty well. We needed some positive reinforcement to feel a bit better about ourselves. That’s what tonight provided for us.”

On Justin Cobbs

“Justin is one of the better players in the league. He can score the ball. He wants to have a good assist to turnover ratio and he doesn’t want to be selfish. But at the same time, given our circumstances right now with the injury situation, he has to score the ball for us. He came back after Christmas in the first shooting drill and he was really going after it and the ball was coming out of his hands nicely. It makes us that much better if he can score the ball. Then I can get Sam [Singer] in there and distribute the ball a little more then we can use Justin at the off guard.”

On Jeff Powers

“If somebody watched the game and scouted they’d say we need to guard him, we can shoot it. It means now that the floor is more open for other people to move because they need to guard him. Creighton just packed the box. They put everybody in the paint and dared us. Nobody was scoring the ball. Jeff is a good shooter. I don’t want to say that he’s going to go six for seven every night. The ball was delivered on time and he was in rhythm and that was nice to see.”

On the non-conference schedule

“The games that we lost were on the road against good teams. We didn’t expect to lose Richard [Solomon] in Hawaii and we didn’t have Kreklow and Bird in Omaha. You can only do what you can do. Nine wins is a game short, maybe two games short of really dang good…. If we had stayed healthy would we have won one more in Hawaii? Maybe, but it would have had to come against Syracuse…. Creighton is very good. The record doesn’t mean anything going into conference but it put us in position to have some wins going in.”

On dealing with the injuries

“It’s going to be tough. It’s going to be hard. Ricky is one of our smarter, tougher, more cerebral players. Bird is talented. Obviously we don’t have them. We can’t afford to give up another guy. We had those two guys as our starting threes and Ricky was our backup four, and now we don’t have that. We’re having to go to different players. If I can get 18 from Jeff every night, we’ll be just fine.”

On Richard Solomon

“He’s got to be a little bit smarter on those touch fouls he’s getting. You want them to be physical, legitimate, active fouls going for the ball. It did slow him down. In the second half he played like I think he needs to do all the time. He had 11 rebounds and was a man on the glass. That’s what we need for him. He was very good and I left him in. I tried to get him a touch to get him a double-double because he was really working the boards and I wanted to reward him for that. He’s capable of doing that but he’s got to be a little smarter on not to pick up the fouls.”


California Players

Jeff Powers, Senior Guard­

On the game

“I can’t put into words how it felt, but that was pretty special. I haven’t done anything like that since high school. I didn’t shoot one three-pointer, so that’s a little discouraging, but I made the shots I took so that was pretty fun. I enjoyed it, and we got the win.”

On his intentions coming off the bench

“Just to play, I mean I really wasn’t coming into tonight’s game saying I want to have 18 points and shoot 6-for-7.  The shots fell, nothing really else I can say. When I put in the amount of hours I have over the years, I expect them to go in. I just think my teammates did a really good job of finding me when I did start hitting a couple with Justin, Sam. I owe more to my teammates than to myself tonight.”

Justin Cobbs, Senior Guard

On his approach today

“I talked with coach after the Creighton game and he really talked about ‘we need you to score’. For the past few games, I’ve been deferring a little bit and facilitating, but going into conference I need to pick it up and just lead this team in any way possible and I’m really going to look to start being a little bit more aggressive on offense and still try to facilitate. I’m going to put emphasis on being aggressive on offense.”

On the team’s performance

“I think we moved the ball well. These last few practice day we had an emphasis on making the extra pass and as a team making each other better because a lot of times we were going one-on-one and shooting a lot of tough shots so I think today the ball was really moving. Jeff was able to knock down shots, Jordan knocked down shots, Ty hit a few shots and was around the basket. So I think when we move the ball and play as a team and really don’t care who gets the shot as long as we get the shot we want, we’re way more effective.”

On the team’s preparation for conference play

“I think today was a big step for us, just in the aspect of confidence. Looking at the stat sheet everybody was shooting over 60 percent in the field…a lot of guys were making shots today. Just in an aspect of confidence going in, we’re making shots, we’re getting shots, and we’re doing the little things. Jeff took a charge, and we’re doing all the right things moving the ball. I think going into conference, we’re going in with a little feel good, a little confidence. So now, we know how tough the conference is …just get everyone you can and make sure you protect home court and take it from there.”


Furman Head Coach Niko Medved

On the game, and how Furman played in the second half

“We scored, but, the team is not committed to playing defense and that’s a problem. Until we are ready, we are going to have nights like this. I was disappointed… we came out of the locker room and started scoring but I thought our defensive transition was bad and we didn’t guard the ball. We were just trading baskets there early in the second half. That’s what is disappointing because we had a chance to guard, and we could have had a chance to run and cut the lead a little bit. I’m really, really disappointed in our defensive effort. As a young team, when things go well, we play pretty well, but when things don’t go well for stretches, it’s when we kind of collapse and go our separate ways. I think that’s what happened tonight. Cal is a good team and I give them credit, but at the same time, I was not pleased at all with how we guarded.”

On the difficulty of getting past Cal’s defense

“Absolutely… and obviously Stephen [Croone] is going to get a lot of attention [from Cal’s defense]. Coach Montgomery is a good coach and watches the film. Stephen did have six assists tonight but he is going to grab a lot of attention. He just needs to learn to play a little bit slower, play off two feet, make plays for others when he gets in there. Sometimes we drove it in there and it didn’t go our way so we got frustrated which then effected out defensive transition. They were able to score quickly on us, and we weren’t really able to recover.”

On the Furman offense

“We just tried to play one-on-one, guys tried to revert from what we were doing, and they were switching a lot of stuff which we knew going in that we worked on. You have to continue to move the ball. It’s not going to be easy for Stephen , they’re going to deny him the ball and they’re not going to let him come off one pass and let him go one-on-one and score on these guys at this level. It’s just not going to happen. He [Croone] has to learn to be more patient, work harder without the ball. And that’s not just Stephen; it’s all of our guys, a lot of standing around.”  

Some of the bright spots tonight, I thought that [William] Gates is learning as a young player to play in our offense, and he moved pretty well without the ball. And I thought he had a nice night and continued to really try and stay with what we do. We will learn from this. At the end of the day, we shot forty percent, and scored sixty which is great. But what the kids need to understand is that a lot of good offense is created from good defense. And if you’re taking the ball out of the net every time because they’re scoring on you, it’s hard to turnaround a score. If we had been able to play a better defense, we may have been able to score 70 or 75 points tonight.”


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