No. 5 #AztecMBB-Boise State Postgame Quotes

Feb. 5, 2014

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San Diego State guard Dwayne Polee
On the last shot:
I saw Xavier coming off the pick-and-roll and I saw how Drmic tried to help on the big man. I was right in my shot pocket and all I saw was the rim.

We try not to get in those positions but Boise State is a great team, they have great players. It's expected to have a tough game, it goes down to the wire every time we play them.

On why Boise State is always tough to play:
We always expect them to play their hearts out every time. They are a hard playing group of guys, they crashed the boards tonight tremendously so it seems like that's the main thing.

San Diego State guard Xavier Thames
On why Boise State brings wire to wire finishes: I just think they're a good match up for us and we're a good match up for them. We are always going to get their best game especially when we are number 5 in the country now, coming to their place. They were trying to get us, trying to storm the court, so we just kept on fighting.

On how the win ranks on the season:
It's up there, but we can't get too high off this win. It's a great win, on the road, against a great Boise State team. It's definitely up there but we just need to keep getting better.

On the crowd and atmosphere:
You can most definitely feel it and that's what we want. We want big games, I'm pretty sure our whole team dreamed about this. Being top five in the country and coming to a hostile environment in Boise with a good team, we strive for things like that. Like I said, it was a great team win tonight.

Boise State Head Coach Leon Rice Opening Statement:
I just feel awful for these guys. They're giving everything they have and we're down a soldier tonight and got some guys with some banged up bruises and they're still trying to play and giving everything they have. We haven't finished. I have to do more to help them. I have to do more to help them because it can become a disease, here they come and we can't stop them. I saw that look in our guys' eyes and that was the first time I've seen that look. We had a tough one at UNLV and now the same thing tonight. I have to pick them back up and get them back to believing and knowing how to finish and we have to show them how to finish. And this team can be good at it. Now, that is the No. 5 team in the country and I thought we played terrific basketball for a lot of minutes. They got us on our heels a little bit and it looked like we were going to finish the game.

On late-game pressure:
You can't replicate the pressure those teams are giving us but the mindset of finishing is what we have to have. We have tough players and kids who can make clutch shots. And you have to get their belief back. Myself and the staff, we are going to do everything we can to pick them back up because God bless them, they are giving them everything they have. They played a terrific game against a terrific team, a team that's won 19-straight games and the No. 5 team in the country, and we had them completely on the ropes.

On the 10+minute scoring drought:
I don't know because at times we're a really good offensive team. We're not trying to slow them down in any way, I don't know if it's combination of not having the depth we've had or if we're getting a little tired. We got on our heels a little bit and missed some shots.

On the crowd making the players tense:
I think the crowd did make them a little tense. SDSU has a belief they know how to win those games. And that program does and that's what we have to be. We have to cure ourselves of this disease. It's the mindset that we have to finish games. We did some good things down the stretch. We surrounded Thames and didn't let him get the shot, and he kicked it out to Polee and he made a heck of a shot. We didn't want Thames to have the shot. Give credit to Polee, he made it.

On taking a timeout:
We pushed it up the floor and we're taught to get it before they get back. Obviously In hindsight I should have taken it then because we got shell-shocked a little bit and didn't get any kind of look.

On shooting well at the beginning of both halves:
Our ball movement stopped, I don't know if it's fatigue. We're not slowing them down, we're not trying to slow them down, but we're slowing ourselves down. Our guys have to see that and we have to fix that. I don't know if they get tentative, SDSU turned up the heat on us and obviously we know how good defensively they are like that, but still I thought it was a combination of us. We got on our heels. Right now it's a disease that we have to cure. I have to get their confidence back. I felt it and I saw it in timeouts. We're up three points with 50+seconds to go with the ball.

On parity in the MW :
That's what these guys have to understand, we're a good team right now and we are so close to being a great team and we can't lose sight of that. We played great basketball at UNLV, didn't finish. We played great basketball against the No. 5 team at home, didn't finish. I have to help them.

On shutting down Watkins in the second half:
I think part of that was fatigue and they're big and athletic. A lot of those rebounds come off of penetration.

On the crowd:
It was a great crowd tonight and I thank them for coming. I think our crowd appreciates how hard we battle. When you're building a program you don't go from A to B in a straight line sometimes, there's a lot of work to be done in there. And you have to keep getting better. We're so close to being a really good team. A couple of minutes here and there and we're a great team.

On injuries:
I'm proud of these guys and the way they're battling. They're resilient. These are tough times when you lose like that. We've lost a lot of games that were tough. I'm proud of their resiliency and their toughness and their togetherness. We need to polish off the finish and we can beat anybody. There were brilliant moments when we were playing great basketball. You just can't have bad moments against good teams like that.

On Boise State's offensive plays:
So much of our offense is based on ball movement and it gets sticky sometimes and we try to do it ourselves.

Boise State guard Mikey Thompson
On being anxious or tense:
Our crowd getting into it and them making runs, it was a tense game but we have to close out games like we did in the first half.

On the offensive drought:
We didn't move the ball and every time we penetrated they stopped us or created a turnover.

On the first half vs. the second half:
It's fatigue, we were playing hard and physical throughout the whole game. We have to be mentally being strong to close out tough games and that's something we haven't been doing this season.

On SDSU's defense:
They were getting to open areas and we weren't following the scouting report. They were capitalizing on each shot they took.

On getting stops:
It hurts not getting stops and us fighting back as hard as we can. That's not acceptable. We have to keep getting shots like we did in the first half. Then we can be a great team like the coaches say we can be.

On the final 3 pointer:
We just knew Thames went to the basket and sucked everyone in and left Polee open and left a wide three and he knocked it down.

Boise State Guard Derrick Marks
On losing close games: It hurts. That's all I can say about that.

On the offensive drought:
That's something that never comes through our heads. We're always about the present moment and we don't think about last moment we were in this position. It's just something we learn from.

On last second shots:
That's something my teammates trust me to do. I'm comfortable in that position, I just have to do what I do more and not settle.

On the first half vs. the second half:
I just didn't play the way I've been playing and that's not acceptable. It all hurts because I hate losing more than I like winning. I wasn't making plays I know I'm capable of.

On the mood in the locker room:
I could tell that it hurts everyone and games like this it's supposed to hurt. All we can do is come back more confident.

On two close losses and possibly seeing them in the Mountain West Tournament:
We can (beat them). Every game with them is down to the wire. I wasn't expecting a blow out but we didn't finish the game.

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