(#9) Washington 54, Lehigh 37
Bank of America Arena/Seattle, Wash.
Friday, Dec. 23, 2005
WASHINGTON HEAD COACH Lorenzo Romar
"That is a very well coached team, Lehigh. It was a really good game for us to play, going into conference play. We have played teams that are similar, like Air Force and New Mexico, in terms of playing more deliberate basketball.
"Some other teams we've played they've tried to play deliberate basketball but we've been able to impose our will on them. We weren't able to do that as much with this team tonight. They did a good job, for the most part. We forced them into 20 turnovers, but for the most part they ran their offense. What they did, more importantly, was defensively they really did a good job of packing it in on us and collapsing on our slashers and our post players. The reason that's good is that I think that more than half of our conference plays the same type of tempo. So it was a good lesson for us to go through this in a game situation, so that when we meet this type of situation in conference play, we'll be a little bit more prepared for it."
On whether he was satisfied with the defensive effort and on playing low tempo teams: "Defensively in the first half, we really (played well). I thought in the second half we lost focus a bit. I think there are games like this that you play throughout the year that become ugly. There are teams that make the games like this. When I was at St. Louis we had bigger, slower guys and we would play like that, because we felt that was our only chance. Teams would get frustrated when we played against them. We'd win our share and we'd lose our share, and it could frustrate you. That's (Lehigh's) philosophy, that's how they play. But I think, for the most part we did a pretty good job defensively on them."
On the Gonzaga game vs. the Lehigh game in terms of preparation for conference play: "Gonzaga's obviously a better team, but they play different defensively. They're more up-tempo, they're more wide open defensively. So it's not necessarily how good the team is, it's just we have to be able to play at this tempo."
On looking forward to the Pac-10 season:
"I think our guys have been looking forward to playing in the Pac-10 season for a couple of weeks now. They've come out and worked hard. I don't think we've overlooked any opponent. I don't think we overlooked Lehigh. But I think that our guys are excited to play in the Pac-10 season. I think our guys are waiting for that."
On the team's continued growth:
"This is a team that's learning. This is not a veteran team that we have, from top to bottom. We have four seniors, but in terms of our group - Mike (Jensen) came back tonight and played for the first time - we're learning, we're trying to get better. We face uncharted waters at times. Fortunately, through our learning, we're 10-0."
On Mike Jensen's return:
"Mike did a very nice job. He came in and hit those two shots - I know he felt good about that. It was just good to have him back out there playing."
LEHIGH HEAD COACH BILLY TAYLOR
On the game:
"I loved our defensive effort. Washington is an excellent team. They have great speed, and athleticism. Coach Romar does an unbelievable job with them, so I was really proud of our guys to be able to play the kind of defense that we did, and certainly holding them 40 points or so below their season average. Their team is very tough to stop in transition, but I thought our guys were really keyed in, and try to limit some of those easy opportunities."
On who stood out on the Huskies team:
"They have a ton of tremendous talent. Roy is exceptional. He has the ability to create for himself, and for others. Jamaal Williams can score on the low block. Brockton is just a beast and a warrior in there. We tried to trap him to limit some of his touches and easy scores. They have a tremendous team, and I am sure they will have a lot of success."
On shutting down Jon Brockman under the hoop:
"We really focused on trying to limit the amount of points scored in the paint for Washington. We wanted to try to force them to take longer contested jumpshots, and try and go rebound the basketball. I thought we did a good job of that. That was definitely a point of ours and a key of ours going into the game, and I thought our guys did an excellent job executing."