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Postgame: UVA coach Tony Bennett on win over Savannah State

tony bennett uva basketballUVA basketball coach Tony Bennett talks with reporters after the Cavs’ 78-47 win over Savannah State.


On focus and effort of the team:
“We talked about really being alert and ready. You watch them, you can see that they can hit threes quickly. You have to be back in transition and quick to close outs. It was the idea of not just being ready but being good, we talked about that. We got off to a really solid, good start with 12-0 and Ty [Jerome] was making some shots. They usually play zone but we brought them out of their zone, when they went to man. We got some good opportunities for some of the other guys and again, good things happened.”

On the play of sophomore guard Ty Jerome:
“He is a neck-up player, as we say. He was sharp tonight. Obviously, he hit 3 of 3 from three and did a good job whenever he caught the ball in the middle of the zone. I thought he was sharp tonight. We always talk about finding an alternative scorer and it wasn’t needed as much, but early it was and he did a good job.”

On second-half play:
“We try to play a lot of guys and give guys looks and opportunities. The starters did a good job and sometimes when guys came in off the bench, we weren’t as sharp and we had some lapses there. But those are valuable playing minutes and opportunities for those guys to get experience and play through mistakes and work defensively against teams that are trying to shoot it quick and get down the floor. I thought our first unit started the second half well and whenever they were out there it was good, and it was good to get minutes for the other guys.”

On the bench playing more minutes than the starters:
“It was pretty balanced, everybody. Savannah State, they were in a ten-point game with nine minutes against Baylor. And a team that shoots like that, they were in a lot of games in the first half and usually there was separation. They are on quite a road trip and they have played quite a schedule, and I thought if we were fortunate enough in this game to play solid, absolutely then, can we get more minutes, more playing experience for the guys that haven’t gotten as much. I thought if we played well, I always think that. That’s why sometimes I’ll get frustrated if we have a bigger lead and then we have a lapse and can’t get those valuable playing experiences for those news guys or those guys coming off the bench.”

On readiness of the team nearing the end of non-conference play:
“I think so. I think we have a pretty good feel of who we are. We’ll start watching film on Hampton and getting a feel for them. But we obviously know how good the ACC is, that goes without saying, and I think you’ll continue to be in so many tough battles against high level competition and we just have to keep improving. I like the leadership, that has emerged as I thought it would with Isaiah and Devon and Jack, our captains. We talked about empowering them from day one and they have done a good job of continuing to try to find different guys at different times to step up and score. Those are some things that we’ve seen and hopefully we’ll continue to evolve and develop.”

augusta free press
augusta free press