NCAA Portland: Thompson, Georgetown Players

The Georgetown head coach and players D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera and Jabril Trawick talk about the Hoyas 84-74 win over Eastern Washington in the second round of the NCAA Tournament in Portland...

THE MODERATOR: For Georgetown we have the head coach and student-athletes. Coach, your opening statement.

COACH THOMPSON: I like the way we came out at the start of the second half and kind of extended things. Fortunately we did that because at the end there some of those turnovers almost let -- we did let them back in it. But we had enough to hold on. We're glad we're advancing.

THE MODERATOR: Open the floor to questions for the student-athletes.

Q. D'Vauntes, did you have a sense, they got that lead there in the first half, that you were going to have to withstand something from them, they were going to make shots, the crowd was going to get into it, you were going to have to overcome that?
D'VAUNTES SMITH-RIVERA: I mean, we knew they were going to go on a run eventually. That's what the game is, it's a game of runs. We just wanted to withstand that and try to, you know, continue to fight, try to stop them, keep them from doing the things that they're good at.

Q. D'Vauntes, is there anything in their defense that you saw an opportunity to hit those threes? How open were you?
D'VAUNTES SMITH-RIVERA: I mean, my teammates got me open. They were setting great screens. We were just reading what they were doing. We got a little stagnant at times. But overall I think we executed pretty well.

Q. Bradley, could you tell me about, were you expecting to get this much action coming into in game? How do you feel afterwards?
BRADLEY HAYES: I mean, my coach always tells me before the game, Be ready, contribute as much as you can. I'm always mentally ready when I get into a game and I just try to do what I could to contribute to my team.

Q. D'Vauntes, you have been reminded of some of the recent tournament history for a while, what the Eastern Washington coach had to say yesterday. How eager were you to quiet this and play your game?
D'VAUNTES SMITH-RIVERA: We haven't talked about it. We're playing Saturday, so...

Q. What about their press in the second half was giving you so much trouble and allowed them to make it a game towards the end?
JABRIL TRAWICK: I mean, we had a big lead on them, so they had to do something to inch back in the game. I think it made us do some things that we definitely didn't want to. At the end of the day we were able to hold on and come out with a W, so...

D'VAUNTES SMITH-RIVERA: I mean, I'll take most of the credit for that. A lot of things that we did, that I did, was out of character. Most of my turnovers were in the second half, missed free throws. I'll definitely clean it up. We'll definitely clean it up.

Q. Jabril, how big were those minutes that Bradley gave you guys in the first half?
JABRIL TRAWICK: It was huge for us. I'm real proud of Brad. We needed that boost he gave us. He came in and rebounded well and he also finished. That was a big spark for us. Especially they had a nice little lead on us. Brad was a great help for us today.

Q. What was your all's mindset? Did you have any feeling you have something to prove entering this game?
JABRIL TRAWICK: We felt like we had something to prove just in general, just because last year we didn't make the tournament. This year we just felt like we had a chip on our shoulder. Regardless of who we were playing, we just wanted to come out and get a win. That's what we did tonight.

Q. Have you had a chance to watch any of Utah, scout Utah? I know Eastern Washington was first, but what do you know about those guys?
D'VAUNTES SMITH-RIVERA: I mean, we haven't really watched too much of them. Literally we focused on this one game all week, you know, up until this point. I'm sure we'll go over them pretty heavily tonight and, you know, scout those guys and try to figure out, you know, where we go from there.

Q. Jabril, what was the matchup like against Harvey? How do you think you did on him?
JABRIL TRAWICK: I know he's a great player. When we found out we were playing against them, they told me he was the leading scorer in the nation. A lot of the shots he was taking were tough shots and crazy shots, like from the volleyball hashmark. Deep three zone. Coming into the game, I wanted to make it tough for him, forcing him right. I knew a lot of his tendencies and a lot of the moves he wanted to do. I wanted to come in and make it tough for him. I think I did a pretty good job on that tonight.

THE MODERATOR: Gentlemen, thank you very much. Good luck on Saturday. At this time we'll take questions for Coach Thompson.

Q. Did you feel like your team was going to come out with intensity? How did you manage them or stoke them up or calm them down before this game?
COACH THOMPSON: I thought we would come out ready to play. There's no doubt about that. I didn't need to stoke them up and didn't want to calm them down. So we took a little bit to get going there. Bradley, BJ, was the one that got us going. He got us going with his effort and his energy and his rebounding. Once the guys saw that, I think we settled in. We hit some shots and defended up until the very end where we had some turnovers that looked like we never played before. Our energy and focus coming into this game was where it needed to be.

Q. How much did you tell your team about the fact they were going to have to withstand runs they made and shots they were going to inevitably make on you?
COACH THOMPSON: We talked about that a lot. Eastern Washington is an outstanding offensive team. It's not just Harvey. It's not just Jois. They're an outstanding offensive team. We talked a lot about, Okay, fellas, there's going to be a point in the game where they're going to hit two, three, four threes in a row. The place is going to go crazy. You're going to have 20,000 people cheering against you. That's going to happen at some point during the course of the game. Okay. We've been there before. It's going to be just like a road game. I thought when that happened, we for the most part had a response, answer. We for the most part came down and executed on the offensive end until the end. In the first half when they come out, hit two, three, a couple in a row, we came back and answered.

Q. Talk about not only what Bradley, but Aaron and Tre were able to do coming in off the bench and reverse the momentum back in your favor.
COACH THOMPSON: Yeah, those three gave us the boost. I forget how much we came in up at halftime. Aaron was big. Tre did what Tre's been doing. But AB and BJ definitely came in. That's what this time of year is about. What BJ did today is unbelievable. That's what this tournament is about, stories like that. BJ articulated it best. We tell them to be ready, be ready. He was ready. His number because called. It may be someone else tomorrow, it may not be. We have to be ready.

Q. Jim Hayford said he was hoping Josh would stay in and play later. Did you ever think about going small? When he got in early foul trouble, did you ever have thoughts of going small or was Bradley the obvious choice to overpower them, you were hoping?
COACH THOMPSON: You know, so he guaranteed victory. And, you know, maybe it's just me, but when I think of that, I think of Joe Namath, I think of Muhammad Ali, I think the Larry Bird and the three-point shooting contest. The kids brought it to me and said, Their coach is guaranteeing victory. I kind of looked down there at him. Thought he didn't foot the bill, guys that usually guarantee victory. Our guys were fired up about that. Our guys were fired up. I think that added to BJ being ready. To answer your question, I wanted to go with BJ. I was prepared to go smaller. We can go a lot of different ways. But BJ played so well, we stayed with it.

Q. Do you feel like this win kind of quiets some of the talk around the recent tournament games? Do you feel like this does something for you in that regard?
COACH THOMPSON: We'll see. Will this quiet it? I don't know. We just have to go out and prepare as D'Vauntes talked about for a very tough Utah team. You keep doing your business, you keep doing what you're supposed to do, eventually people will be quiet. To tell you the truth, we're Georgetown. Even if we do so, people may not be quiet. We're used to that.

Q. What's it like kind of preparing a scout, a quick turnaround for a Utah team that's a different profile, a lot of size, a little bit more slower pace, and defensive oriented?
COACH THOMPSON: Well, going through the Big East Conference, I think we've been exposed to every style of play. That's one of the strengths of our league in that you're going to see in the course of the year every style of play at a high level. So now, you know, we have a quick turnaround, but they do, too. So we'll be ready. We'll be ready to play.

THE MODERATOR: Coach, thank you very. Good luck Saturday.

COACH THOMPSON: Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports


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