You've got to give Maryland a lot of credit. They have a fabulous team – an experienced team. I thought they held it together when we made a run … but pride our team for coming back in the first half especially. It could have been easy for our guys to hang their heads, but I think, as we've seen this year, when we are down we fight back I think we just dug ourselves too big a hole against a good team and that's hard to overcome.
I thought with their rebounding [advantage] a lot was due to our missed shots. But otherwise I was proud of the way our guys battled on the boards. When we cut it to ten [late] we could have not fouled. I could have said ‘let's just keep it close,' but that's not my style or our style. We want to win the basketball game and put them at the foul line and try to go down and make some threes ourselves.
Should have gotten fouled more – and that's not the referees I'm talking about. Should have tried to get fouled more so we could score more points at the foul line. Did a good job of that Saturday against UConn. I just think we got a little stagnant in the first half with our offense, held the ball a little too much, and that got us into the hole.
You have to credit them – they're disruptive. Even their big guys step out to screens and get deflections and that screws up the rhythm of your offense. Their experienced – have guys that have played in a lot of big games and they know how to deal with those kinds of situations.
On Maryland's experienced players (starting five seniors) -
It's comforting as a player when you have upperclassmen around you in a tough situation because you can lean on them on the floor. I remember when I was a senior and Kenny [Smith] was a freshman and we gave some guidance. But again, our kids kept battling and gave us some chances. We made some plays, but missed some shots. I knew we were going to have to shoot the ball well tonight to win and we didn't. I was proud of the way we took care of the ball. I really thought that if we had less than 15 turnovers we'd have a great shot to win the ballgame, but we just didn't shoot it well enough. They shot 50% against us and we can't let people shoot 50% against us – and we need to shoot better ourselves.
You frequently talk of matchups, and this was a particularly tough matchup in the post -
It's a tough matchup because of their size. When guys get tired, Tahj Holden is still 6-10, 270. I think that's tough, it's hard. I think Damion did a really good job but he's playing on a bad ankle and he can't give us the minutes I'd like. But again, if we just did a little better job early instead of being down eight at halftime … we didn't have a good flow to our offense in the first half and you have to give them a lot of credit.
On UNC's several key droughts -
Again, that's flow of the game. And when you don't have a guy who can get you easy baskets on the inside, even whether it be an offensive rebound putback type thing or a set play, the defense doesn't have to collapse. They did that put the knife in our hearts when he hit that three and he's that kind of player.