Postgame Quotes: Ohio State vs. Winthrop

Dec. 18, 2012

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Thad Matta, Ohio State head coach
On Winthrop
"You have to give Winthrop a ton of credit. They played to win tonight. Guys were making shots that hadn't really made shots. We finally had an adjustment where we said `guard everybody.'"

On the defensive intensity in the second half
"It was the defense, no question, but we made some shots as well. Some of the shots in the first half didn't go down. That kind of knocked the wind out of us. You have to learn to play through that. The defense won the game."

On the team losing focus
"It's unfortunate if that was the case. I think that the one thing you have to get your kids to understand is that you only get about 32 guaranteed games. The guys have to understand that you always have to get better. I don't think this team is as good as it is going to be. You have to change the mindset of your team and come everyday to practice and work."

On sophomore forward Amir Williams
"Amir [Williams] has been playing with an edge. He's been taking the next step every time he takes the floor. I can't explain how important that is for the team. We need his development to continue for the team."

On junior forward Deshaun Thomas
"He's been very unselfish throughout the course of the season. He had four assists tonight. He's seeing open areas."

Deshaun Thomas, junior forward
On the upcoming game against Kansas 
"We are looking forward to the game. It will be a big game for us, but we can't have the start we had for this game. We have to prepare over the next few days."

On Ohio State's slow start
"Everyone's mind was not right starting this game tonight. During practice we had a scrimmage and our problems during the scrimmage spilled over to our game."

On coming back from missing nine shots in the first half
"I wasn't ready mentally and I knew my shots were not going in. Aaron Craft gave me a good hand off and I made the shot. We have to make sure we are ready, especially when your time comes. Our defense picked up as well with ten straight stops."

Aaron Craft, junior guard
On Matta's response to the game"
"He told us we have to get better. We have to give Winthrop a lot of credit because they came in and played a lot harder and tougher than we did tonight. With our upcoming game Saturday, then heading into the B1G season we can't play like we did tonight."

On the game being viewed as a wake up call
"If we need a wake up call for our upcoming game this weekend then we shouldn't be playing at all.  Every team we play we take it one game at a time. If we are not sure we are ready to play Kansas with what is at stake then we need to reevaluate ourselves as a team."

On Deshaun's scoring
"We were going back and forth with shots against the other team and we knew we needed to do something about it. Shannon [Scott] did a great job coming off the bench and making plays on defensive for us. We have to do better on the defensive end of the court. We have to get stops and easy lay ups more"

On concern after this game
"We have time to watch film and learn from out mistakes we had this game. Hopefully we can learn in these last few days before we play Kansas.  Winthrop has a couple great shooters. They were great in transition and defense."

Pat Kelsey, Winthrop head coach
On growing up in Ohio
"I'm a Cincinnati kid, born and raised in the state of Ohio. Going to St. John Arena was like going to mecca for young men who grew up in the state of Ohio. This [Value City Arena] is a newer venue, but it is still an honor to walk into this building and play against the Ohio State Buckeyes."

On Winthrop's play
"I was proud of our young men. We had a good road trip overall. Ohio University was a very good team and our guys walked into a lion's den down there and got a win. We knew we would have as much of a challenge walking into this venue, against an unbelievably talented team."

On the type of team he wants to coach
"I told our guys for us to be a good team our game has to be muddy. It is sure as heck not a work of art. Coach Skip Prosser used to say, `Watching our team play, Jimmy Naismith would be rolling around in his grave.' It is like a tractor pull sometimes. That is who we have to be."