QUOTABLES: NC State

PITTSBURGH, PA - Here are some quotes from Mark Gottfried and T.J. Warren following the win over Pittsburgh.

Mark Gottfried
Opening Statement:

"That was a great team win for us. Obviously T.J. (Warren) was spectacular and he made big shots for our team and kept making them late in the game and we finished the game out which at times is something we haven't done. Even the other guys who weren't scoring much, whether it was setting a screen, getting a defensive or offensive rebound, guys did some things really well. It was a great team win and like I said T.J. was special tonight, no question."

On how important it was to outrebound Pitt by 12:
"I thought there were two things going into the game that we talked to our team about. One was not turning the ball over, we played Pitt earlier in the year and they just took the ball from us six or eight times and took them down for lay-ups, the old pick-six. We had to play without turning the ball over and the other thing was rebounding the ball.

"Talib) Zanna went for 17 points and 14 rebounds down at Raleigh and tonight they only got two offensive rebounds, which is almost unheard of with Jaime's (Dixon) teams. They're really good on the glass and I thought our ability to rebound the ball and not turn it over were big for our team."

On what specifically helped them gain an advantage on the glass:
"I thought our guys just had a mindset to go get it. At the half they didn't have an offensive rebound. Our guys did a nice job. We adjusted our defense and protected the paint better than we did a couple of nights ago and that helped us get in better position to rebound the ball."

On T.J. Warren's performance:
"It's interesting, T.J. Warren gets 41 points tonight but it's an unselfish 41. He shot 16-for-22 from the field, he's not taking bad shots, our guys did a great job executing our offense and hunting for him because he had the hot hand. Lennard Freeman set a couple of great screens for him coming off of the foul line area. He was special especially against a team that prides themselves on defending the way Pitt does."

On if he questioned whether his team would bounce back from Saturday's loss:
"Not really. What has happened to us is we've left one game affect the next game a couple of times. We played at Syracuse, put ourselves in a position to win, and were emotionally drained and allowed it to affect us against Clemson. We did the same thing with North Carolina and allowed it to affect us. We bounce back pretty well but those games have hurt our team. We've had two really good days of practice, our guys have had great spirit and they came out tonight and played with great purpose. We've had some times this year where we haven't finished a game real well and we finished tonight and I thought that was important."

On their defensive strategy heading into the game:
"We tried to front (Lamar) Patterson, completely deny him the ball and didn't want him to be comfortable. Desmond Lee and Cat Barber did a great job of disrupting that. We did a much better job of helping each other; they didn't have many opportunities to drive which is what we wanted. They made 10 three-pointers tonight and they're a team that usually doesn't make many three-pointers."

On if Josh Newkirk's performance surprised them:
"It surprised us, definitely caught us off guard a little bit. 5-for-5 from the three, he played terrific tonight and you have to give him credit, that was a bit of a surprise."

Quoting NC State forward T.J. Warren:
On what allowed him to be so effective tonight:

"Well, I came out pretty aggressive tonight and my teammates did a good job of finding me in the open floor. As a team, we executed our offense effectively. So, all credit for this performance goes to my teammates."

On whether the defense Pitt played affected him:
"The important thing for me is to pick and choose my spots against the defense. Like I said, our guards did a pretty good job of swinging the ball around the top of the key. Also, Lennard (Freeman) set some great screens for me. Again, this was an all-around effort by our team."

On whether he knew it was his night at any point:
"Yeah, that three at the end of the shot-clock felt good, so I kind of knew it was going to be one of those nights. My teammates found me in some good spots and I was able to knock down those shots."


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