Postgame Quotes: California-UCLA

"That was pretty good. The guys were really moving the ball and really fired up. They were excited to play. The ball moved. People moved. Guys were making shots. We were defending well. You can point
By Cal Athletics on Thu, February 14, 2013

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Feb. 14, 2013

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California Head Coach Mike Montgomery

On the first half and the game
"That was pretty good. The guys were really moving the ball and really fired up. They were excited to play. The ball moved. People moved. Guys were making shots. We were defending well. You can point to a couple mistakes, but by and large, we didn't make many mistakes. We were aggressive. I thought frankly that the approach and game plan was solid. To his credit, Larry Drew hurt us. He took advantage of what we were trying to do, to force him to not let Shabazz and Adams on curl off screens. I think we did that well but we paid a price. He jumped up and hit four-five threes to his credit. We were very good in the first half. As one would expect with a good team they came back extremely aggressive in the second half. I hoped to weather the first half of hit a little bit better. Get the thing calmed down. They came at us pretty good and very aggressive. Maybe you can't expect to play that well and with that kind of pace for 40 minutes. It was a great win for us. The fact that it was on ESPN probably helps a little bit for people to see us and the fact that it was at six; maybe some people tuned in and saw. That has to help us. It's gratifying. The big guys were great, 19-of-24 from the floor. That's fabulous. We haven't had that kind of production. UCLA kind of forces that. We did a good job of taking advantage and finishing plays with the bigs. Solomon was 8-of-10, Kravish was 8-of-11, and Thurman was 3-of-3. Kravish was very good. He had 18 and 13 and took advantage of the help and offensively-rebounded the ball. You can just point to things across the board. Cobbs had nine assists and one turnover. Tyrone was very good defensively and had a six to one turnover ratio. We moved the ball."

On how good the team is capable of playing
"Obviously we are playing better now. It seems like guys have figured out what they can and cannot do. I think they've figured out how to take advantage of certain things. I think they are playing with a lot of confidence. We hadn't sorted out some things early on. We have gotten better. Part of it is because we're playing harder. We don't have as many mental lapses. We've been home for two of the three games and we've played two ranked teams so there's no reason not to be excited. We've got to stay excited against everybody. That's going to be key for us."

On the expectations and results of the last four games
"It's possible. If you look at the track record before you would say it was going to be a really tough stretch, and it was, but we played well. We didn't play all that well at ASU. We had chances there and we didn't play as well. I hope it's not a product of the guys going, `Oh, these guys are good, let's play hard.' And then not doing that against others. Kids have funny thought processes, thinking that maybe we don't have to play as hard. Every game is going to be a challenge for us. 3-1 against the top four teams, we gave people a better chance to get involved in those top four spots."

On Richard Solomon
"We like Richard going to the middle. He's figuring out where he's a bit better. He's pretty good on that turnaround when he gets to the middle of the floor. He also had some drop-offs for dunks and Richard likes that so that probably buoys his thought process a little bit. I talked to Bill Walton a little bit before the game. I said well, if we can get some productivity from our inside people, that makes us a whole lot better. Crabbe was really good early which forced them to make an adjustment which probably opened up our bigs but that's what playing as a team is about."

Sophomore Forward David Kravish

On the confidence you and Richard played with
"Rich and I have always been on each other. At the beginning of the season we didn't come out with a lot of energy, even as a team. We talked to each other and we realized that it really starts with us. If we get the rebounds and we play hard, then the team is going to be able to get out and start running, so it is getting the rest of the team fired up. Every game we are coming in with the mentality that it starts with us and we have to bring the intensity and the energy early.

On the turnaround
"This is the team that we should've been all season, and this is the team that we can be for the rest of the season.

On Justin Cobbs
"Justin is a great player, he is quicker than just about everybody and he is strong. He can get wherever he needs to get on the court and so he really opens up a lot of opportunities not only the bigs but for Allen and Tyrone and all the wings. I mean he can do it all as evident from his stats tonight: 5 rebounds, 9 assists, and 12 points. It is obvious that he can score, he has shown that all season.

On when the team really turned around the corner
"I think when we beat Oregon, that game really showed us how we had to play. Even the second half of the Oregon State game, Oregon State showed us how we really have to play. We took that and we beat Oregon, and then we took that to ASU, we backed-off and we lost. That really showed us, that we have to play hard every game as a team every minute. So we can't come out soft and we can't come out without energy. I really think that everyone has noticed that and that the team has really fired up and is really behind each other."

Junior Guard Allen Crabbe

On the first-half performance
"We just told ourselves that we had to go into the game with the same intensity we had in Arizona. Defense was key for us against Arizona and tonight we just came out and got a 26 point lead and they made a run in the second half but the lead was too big for them to come back from.

On the team's ceiling right now
"We just have to go into every game like that. We just have to go out there and play Cal basketball. We feel as a team that we are unstoppable. Our goal as a team is just to keep getting better every day. There are always bumps in the road in this conference. We showed it tonight, we get it rolling and we are unstoppable."

UCLA Head Coach Ben Howland

On the game
"The first half of basketball we couldn't do anything right and they did everything right. Give them credit for really playing outstanding basketball by Cal. They shot an incredible percentage. We fell down - kept taking quick shots and avalanching further and further and digging a deeper and deeper hole, the Arizona game is really the only time that's happened to us this year."

On the second half
"I thought the way we fought back in the second half showed some good character, but you know their big guys killed us, with 21 rebounds and 35 points out of their starters, they had a great job sharing the basketball. They only took 2 3's - maybe I should have gone zone because everything was inside the paint for them offensively. We didn't execute well offensively, we didn't set good screens or have patience and I thought we had a good week of practice this week, that's what's disappointing, I liked the way we practiced this week, so from that standpoint it's disappointing."


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