Postgame Quotes: California at Utah

"I have to give Utah and Larry Krystkowiak a ton of credit because he has those kids playing hard. They try and make the game to their advantage, which they do. They change defenses, they run four peo
By Cal Athletics on Thu, February 23, 2012

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Feb. 23, 2012

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"I have to give Utah and Larry Krystkowiak a ton of credit because he has those kids playing hard. They try and make the game to their advantage, which they do. They change defenses, they run four people back so you get nothing off of the break. They made the game ugly and we fell right into place. Those kids are playing hard and they are doing a great job defensively, they know what they are doing. [A 14-point win] on the road, we'll take it. We were a little bit tired early and we couldn't shoot the ball and you can't do that, that hurts you. We finally buckled down defensively a little bit."

On forcing 11 first-half turnovers
"We started off slow, there were certain things we knew they would do and we missed a couple of cues, and they scored on us but then we buckled down defensively. We let [Kareem] Storey get to the basket twice and there is no excuse for that. That is the one thing we talked about is keeping it in front of us, but then we started playing better defense. Utah is physical, they set really aggressive screens, they push a lot, and it affected us, we were affected a little bit by that. They did a great job of blocking off, so we didn't get a lot of second shots. But we did what we needed to do and obviously the 3-pointer right before the half was a big deal because Utah does not score easily and to score three and go from nine to 12 was probably a good deal and maybe a little bit of a deflator for them. They cut it to seven and it got a little bit dicey, but our two veteran guys made plays and we got it back up again."


"I thought it got out of hand because we had 11 turnovers in the first half and probably had nine in the first 12 minutes of the game. They weren't turnovers where we were getting trapped...we were just throwing it away. It's beyond me, without pressure, that we're not able to move the ball and make a simple play. We started offensively at a high clip, shooting 54 percent and doing well. Last time I checked you can't win if you turn it over. Eventually it put too much heat on our defense. I thought zone-wise we did a pretty good job until we couldn't get a rebound. We just got man-handled inside and they got us pretty good on the offensive glass. That was the first half, and then the second half it was better. The effort was better and I thought we played a little harder and played together we just didn't make enough shots."

On the second-half defensive adjustment
"We did a few things that we just added this week. Tried to extend the court a little bit, three-quarter court pressure and tried to burn a little time. Tried to keep them from having as much time in the half court and it worked. They burned eight or 10 seconds before they got into what they were running. I thought it kept them off balance a little bit, but with a team like Cal, they've seen enough different things. We knew we couldn't just come in and make it a steady diet of the way we've been playing so we tried to throw a couple curve balls along the way."

"I was pretty pleased with our defense. We had a heck of a time with the flex cut kind of stuff off the baseline. We worked on it Oct. 14 when we started practice, it was one of the first things we did and for the life of me, we still can't get that one right, and that's a staple of what Cal did. We lost a lot of buckets underneath with that cross-screen kind of action, block-to-block stuff. And then the rebounding, but beyond that I thought defensively we were pretty solid against a pretty good team and seemed to do a decent job defending. Holding that team to 60 points, I would hit the `deal' button if you would have told me that. We just have to figure out a way to score. Between some lack of execution and guys not thinking and the mindless turnovers, it's just an uphill battle for us to deal with."


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