UNC-Binghamton Postgame: Locker Room Report

Jason Capel, Jawad Williams, and Melvin Scott shared their thoughts following the Tar Heels' 61-60 win over Binghamton.

Jason Capel

You've had a couple of games this year like this, and you weren't able to pull it out. What did you do differently today?

"I think we just stuck together. Because of those games we knew how to handle things. I thought guys really listened. The freshmen made mistakes, but they listened and tried hard. I thought our defense did pretty good -- especially down the stretch.

"Will Johnson, he stepped up a lot. His energy and his fire, he brought to the team vocally and the way he played. That was big for us, and it was a team effort."

How does it feel to have exams over with, so that you can concentrate on basketball?

"I think it's good. You've kind of got one foot in and one foot out all week, studying and stuff like that, and then you come to practice with the main thing on your mind not being basketball because you have to pass. The break is not really good for us because we've got a lot of young guys who need to experience game time. They have to be on the floor, and they have to be in game situations to get that experience. Hopefully, we can get back into it and keep playing two-three games a week and keep improving."

How far does this team have to go before ACC season to get where you want to be?

"We have short-term goals, and right now it's just taking one game at a time. We've got two games this coming weekend, and we have to take them one at a time and win one at a time and win both and take it from there. We have to take it step by step. We're going to get better. We've just got to stick together."

Jawad Williams

How's your thumb?

"It's getting better. I banged it up a little bit tonight, but over time it will get better."

Matt said that you could have tried to get out of some practice time with your injury, but you didn't.

"Yeah, I had to keep practicing. I didn't want to hear his mouth, and I wanted to continue to help my teammates. I knew that sitting on the sidelines wouldn't help either one of us, so I just went out and played."

You look more and more comfortable every time on the court. Maybe the first few times, you were worried about making a mistake, and now it looks like you are just playing basketball without thinking too much.

"If I mess up, I mess up. The worst thing that can happen to me I see now is he'll bench me. I've been through that before so now I just go out and play and do my best."

What was the difference today from other games this year that allowed you to pull out the win after trailing by five with four minutes to play? What did Matt say to you?

"He told us to keep our composure, and I think we did a good job of that. What really helped us was our seniors. Our seniors pulled us together and yelled at us a lot and kept us in the game. We never lost our focus. We knew we had a goal, and we achieved it."

Melvin Scott

Kris Lang should probably be in a hospital bed with an IV. What do those two hustle plays at the end of the game say about him?

"It says he's our leader -- him and Jason. They hung in there for us -- that's what leaders do. It's no surprise. I knew he was capable of that. He was tested tonight. He was very sick, and he just gave us his all. He dug down deep and gave it his all."

We've talked about how you freshmen have to contribute this year. It seems like the seniors aren't coddling you as much as they were early. They are really getting on you. You made a few mistakes. What were they saying?

"Right. They said, 'Man, don't worry about it.' I was thinking 'Dang! My fault. My fault,' and he said, 'Hey! Clear it out of your mind. It's over. Live for the next play. You know the mistake you made. Just don't make it again. We're with you, and we've got your back.' I felt really comfortable in that situation with them helping me and getting me over that hurdle."

What are you learning about how opposing teams play when they see "North Carolina" on your chest?

"When teams see that, they are going to play their best game -- their best game ever. I think we understand that, and we have to come and play. They are not going to lay down because it's North Carolina. They are going to give it 110%, and if we give that every game, we'll be fine. If we don't, we'll make games tough for ourselves. Every team is going to come and try to knock Carolina off. That game is like a championship game."

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