Players after Loss to Oregon

Travis Wear and Norman Powell talk about the loss to Oregon on Saturday, the rebounding issues on defense, and the way Oregon was able to stop their offense...

Travis Wear and Norman Powell talk after Oregon:


Q: Travis [Wear], were you expecting Oregon to show those different kinds of defenses in the second half? The full-court press? The zone?

TW: yeah.

Q: how come you guys couldn't handle it today?

TW: you know, we prepared for it. We went through it yesterday and the day before. When a team like Oregon's been running it and they're comfortable with it, it's tough to break. And it gave us some issues. We had 2 turnovers just on the first pass. They did a good job changing up looks and keeping us uncomfortable.

Q: Travis, what sort of challenges and difficulties that Oregon inside guys like [Tony] Woods create?

TW: well, they're a really really good rebounding team. And that's something we're going to have to get better at. That includes me as well. Woods, [Arsalan] Kazemi. They've got [Waverly] Austin, [E.J.] Singler… all those guys, they go to the boards hard and it showed. We're going to have to work on that.

Q: Travis, it's been awhile since you guys have lost a game. Are you concerned about being able to bounce back from it?

TW: no, not at all. If anything, I think we're just going to be more motivated to get back to practice because we hate this feeling. We have Arizona coming up. Both Arizonas. They're really good teams. And we know we have to bring it this week in practice and prepare to come out ready to get 2 wins.

Q: Travis, do you think that this loss feels any different than like the Cal Poly loss, just in the locker room vibe?

TW: a loss is a loss. It really hurts. The Cal Poly loss hurt a lot. But this one, after having that win streak going… playing so well and then to come out and lose a tough conference game to a ranked team… we really wanted this one. It hurts. It hurts equally as much.

Q: Travis, Oregon has beaten Arizona. They've beaten you guys here now. They're unbeaten in the conference. At this point, do they have to be considered the conference favorite?

TW: yeah, I would say so. They're a really good team. They have all the pieces of a championship team. I would say that we're chasing them right now.

Q: Norman [Powell], talk about your team. The lack of size… I know you guys had a 10 game win streak, but how are you guys going to address the fact that you are a small team?

NP: yeah, we are a small team. But it's all about toughness when we're playing basketball. It's all about being physical and everything like that. Doing all the little things. Just covering that up. Not every team has great size. But if we do the little things like block out, play physical and do the small parts of basketball, we're able to sneak past the bigger opponents and get into our run offense. Because we have small players that can get out and finish in transition and everything like that.

Q: Norman, you guys have let leads slip away in the past few games. And in this one, they pulled away at the end. Is fatigue a factor at all for you guys, playing a short bench?

NP: not at all. Our strength coaches work a lot on our transition. Just getting up and down a lot. Everything like that. Fatigue's not the factor. It's just that we haven't put 2 halves together. We've come out great in the first half but it's just building up that, going into halftime, it's about coming out with the same mindset that we started the game with. Putting 2 halves together. That's what it takes for championship basketball.

Q: Norman, obviously you guys knew this was a nationally televised game. For you, you had a couple of pretty big dunks. What was it like for this to be one of those games where it was 2 ranked teams going into a conference game, being nationally televised?

NP: we knew it was going to be a big game. Especially us being ranked. We're all chasing for that first place in the PAC-12. We all knew it was going to be a big game. We knew it was going to be a hard-fought game. Physical and everything like that. So it was just coming in with that mentality. We just can't get too big-headed about our winning streak. Everyone there thinking that this team's just going to lay there and give us the win. They played Arizona and Arizona State really hard. So we knew that this game was going to be tough for us. We just need to come out harder in the second half.

Q: Travis, what do you think is plaguing you guys the most in terms of the offensive boards? How far do you think you are from being a consistently good rebounding team?

TW: I think that we have to box out. And seek the ball rather than just boxing out and thinking someone else is going to grab it. Go actively seek the ball off the rim. You go get it. Don't wait for it to come to you. We'll work on it this week in practice. Rebounds is an effort thing. Once you get a couple, you get the hang of it. We need to get more comfortable with it.

Q: Travis, you guys got up and down a little bit more in the first half. Is it at the point with this team this season where you're more comfortable running the break? That when you have to slow down in the halfcourt, you guys don't click as much?

TW: yeah, our first look is transition. Getting up and getting easy buckets. Getting something within the first 10 seconds. Getting a wide open shot. Being able to set something up.

Q: Travis, there was a stretch there early in the first half where they got like 4 offensive rebounds in a row. What were you thinking during that time, during that stretch when you had to guard for nearly an entire minute?

TW: yeah, it's tough. They had a couple long [rebounds]. They shot 2 3's in that stretch with a couple long rebounds. We didn't get them. You just have to lock in. [audio difficulties]

Q: Norman, especially you guys having won 10 games and then losing this one before a big road trip…do you guys feel like you guys have something to prove, especially after losing to Oregon. You're going to come out and beat Arizona and Arizona State?

NP: yeah, definitely. Nobody wants to lose. But after a loss like this, we just have to go back to the drawing board and just come back in practice and learn the things we have to work on and just come out and play our best game against Arizona. Give our best effort we have. Just come out and do everything we need to do to win. It takes true character as a team to come back on this road trip and get these 2 wins. We're going to work as hard as we can in practices and focus on Arizona and hopefully get a couple of wins.

Q: Travis, I think it's easy to point a finger at the big guys for the rebounding issues today. But is some of it the dribble penetration that you guys are allowing? You guys have to keep stepping up in the lane and that's creating offensive board opportunities for your opponents.

TW: I don't know. Rebounding. We just have to box out and go get the boards. We can't give them second chance opportunities. Yeah, penetration might be a factor. But when it all come down to it, it's all about boxing out your man and getting after the ball.

Q: Travis, Tony Parker played 3 minutes, got 2 boards and a block during that time. Is that something that obviously, you being a big guy and your brother, with you guys thin on the front court, is that something that you guys feel that Tony should be seeing more minutes? What are your thoughts on that?

TW: Tony came in and gave us really good minutes. We'll see how Coach plays him. When he comes in and does stuff like that, he's obviously putting himself in good shape to get more time.

Q: Travis, you said rebounding is mainly about toughness. You feel like you guys maybe got "out-toughed" today?

TW: yeah, when you look at the boards. Myself, I was trying to box out. And I just think that I should've seeked the ball a little better off the rim.

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