Penn State Quotes
COACH CHAMBERS: Just really proud of my guys. Every time Ohio State made a run and it looked like they were going to extend the lead, you know they stepped up, made a big play. Tony hit a big 3, makes a great decision at the end there. Shep yesterday takes a big-time charge. Today he gets the steal. Give Ohio State a lot of credit. Diop took over there and he went on a little scoring run.
But these guys stood tall. They really did. They stuck together, really believed in our foundation of defending and rebounding.
THE MODERATOR: Questions of the student-athletes.
Q. Josh, could you take us through the last play with the steal and what you saw there before you got the layup and when you got the layup?
JOSH REAVES: To be completely honest, when they got the steal I was really excited. I was kind of like trying to gather myself.
We got the ball, gave it to Tony, and Coach called a really good play. I just noticed my man wasn't looking at me so I took advantage of that. And Tony just shows how much of a great player he is to find an open man in a time like that. I was just fortunate enough to make the dunk.
Q. Tony, you had 25 tonight, 25 last night as well. Couple of times tonight where you really got the offense going with a late shot. What kind of mentality do you have to go in there and be a closer?
TONY CARR: I would say that I'm (indiscernible) mentality. Coach put the utmost confidence in me, and my teammates have the utmost confidence in me. I just want to step up and take those shots.
Q. Tony, how do you push through the tiredness and exhaustion at the end of the game to make a win like that?
TONY CARR: I was definitely tired, like, by the five-minute mark. But we put in so much work this offseason and I wanted to win so bad, so you dig down deep. Coach always preaches that, and we've got great leaders around us just kept us on track. And Shep and Josh -- and we just wanted to get the win.
Q. What does this kind of win mean for the program just as a whole and obviously for this season as well?
JOSH REAVES: This is a big win for us. We go into every single game confident. And we're just fortunate enough to pull out the win at the end of the game. We're going to enjoy this one for now and focus on who we have next.
Q. How do you explain being 3-0 against a good team like Ohio State?
TONY CARR: I would just say with the way the ball bounced, like you said, Ohio State is a great team. But I think we're a pretty good team, too. So we just want to come out and play every game to our best and hopefully come out with the win.
Q. Tony, what's it like for you, just how are you feeling kind of on the court scoring as much as you are? The ball's in your hand late. What's that like for you?
TONY CARR: I felt great. Like I said before, I have the utmost confidence in myself. I put in so much work this offseason. And basically it's just paying off for me. And my teammates find me in great spots. Coach calls great plays where I'm able to score. And I feel great.
Q. Tony, what was the play that was called for that possession?
TONY CARR: It was fist two (phonetic), basically try to get the mismatch and I was just trying to make a play. And Josh basically made the play. He made a great cut. I was just out there dribbling around. Josh made a great play. And I thank God I found him.
Q. Tony, what's the benefit to shooting with so much arc? Have guys tried to change it over the years or do most coaches like it that way?
TONY CARR: No, my grandpop told me when I was young shoot it in the air, it gives it a better chance to go in. I've been shooting like that my whole life. We definitely made some changes to it this offseason but nothing drastic or anything like that.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you. Questions for Coach.
Q. What was the mentality there to not call a timeout with 15 seconds left and you had two timeouts?
COACH CHAMBERS: We've been in this situation before. Go back to Wisconsin. I think Tony learned a lot from it. Our team learned a lot from it. You learn a lot from setbacks and losses. And I just felt like if I called timeout they could set up different defense or make substitutions.
And I don't want to do that. I felt the play that we were running with Josh setting a ball screen and them switching was the appropriate play at that point. And it was very successful, and obviously Tony made the right decision.
Q. By the reaction you had to the Penn State fans across from your bench, talk about how much fun you had and the climb it's been in this season to get to the point where you are right now.
COACH CHAMBERS: There's no doubt. The climb is never straight up, is it? Down, sideways, it's crazy. I just really appreciate all the support when Penn Staters come out like that, the last four home games were outstanding. They do want good basketball here, and it's been dormant a little bit but we're starting to see it and it's getting exciting.
Q. First off, were you surprised Tony passed the ball to Josh in the final 10 seconds? And despite Josh having a tough night shooting what does it say for him to come through like that in such a big moment here in Madison Square Garden?
COACH CHAMBERS: You know what, I knew he would make the right decision. That's why I didn't call a timeout. Mostly he's been shooting it. But I knew he would make the right decision.
Q. Related to that, can you speak to the growth of Tony over the course of this season and how his play has certainly helped, I guess lead the way for the improvement of your team overall versus -- he was a good player to start with, but seemed like his overall attitude and approach to the game is really rising the tide for your team?
COACH CHAMBERS: No doubt. He's really matured. He's shown a lot of growth. That's really important for me as long as he has the growth mindset, willing to get better, learning from setbacks. I think that's what you've seen all year.
Now he's starting to emerge more as a leader. You need leadership, especially with your point guard. Your point guard needs to be your leader. He just turns out to be our best player, too. That's really working out for us.
It's the whole team in general, if you think about it. Without Mike Watkins, this team is very connected. They understand their roles very well. They're talking to each other out there. They're taking over huddles. There's a lot of fun to be in that game today.
Q. The bus had a bit of trouble getting over here today. What was that whole experience like?
COACH CHAMBERS: Unbelievable. A little fender bender, we're 1-0 with fender benders. But we're in New York. What do you expect?
Q. What do you think this win does tonight for you guys to get on the bubble and get selected to the tournament?
COACH CHAMBERS: It's a good win. They talk about Quad 1 wins. We've got plenty of Quad 1 wins. That's a quality win. We hope they give us a hard look.
Q. Your seniors, Julian and Shep, both had critical plays on defense. Julian a good job on Bates-Diop and Shep with the steal late and the dunk. How much of that is urgency and how much of that is they sense that this is their last crack at it and they want to go out with a bang?
COACH CHAMBERS: They've been in there before. They've been in these types of games and battles. Shep yesterday with the charge and Julian had the block and a couple rebounds yesterday. And today he did the same thing. That's what seniors are supposed to do for you.
Q. What does it say about your team go up about eight, down by four? And then specifically when Ohio State calls a timeout you're down one, they had the ball. What did you notice about your guys in that huddle that gave you that confidence that you're going to pull this out?
COACH CHAMBERS: The correct word is confidence. I didn't see anybody sulking or bad body language. No heads were down. They were eager and willing to listen: What are we going to do; how do we get a stop; how are we going to execute? And let us know. They were so connected. That's why I was saying it was so fun to be in those huddles because everybody was really engaged.
Ohio State Quotes
COACH HOLTMANN: Give Penn State credit, I thought they made the necessary plays down the stretch. Tough back and forth game. We'll learn from it and get ready for the tournament.
THE MODERATOR: Questions of the student-athletes.
Q. When someone is scoring as effortlessly and easily as Carr was, is there anything you can do defensively?
KEITA BATES-DIOP: I mean, we just gotta try to make them as uncomfortable as possible. He's a great player and it's hard to stop him when he can score on all three levels. So the best thing we could do is try to get the ball out of his hands.
Q. Jae'Sean, I saw you shaking your head as you were looking down at the statistics. What was it that you were shaking your head at?
JAE'SEAN TATE: A lot of things. The amount of offensive rebounds we gave up in the second half -- I mean in the first half. That really came down to why the game went that way. We just gotta be -- in the future we've got to lock down on the offensive end. I think we did, on the defensive end, we did a great job of making them take tough shots, but we gave them one-on-one chance and that's where it hurt us.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you. Questions for Coach.
Q. Chris, did Pat throw anything different in here, third matchup, anything the first, second half, or was this all according to the scouting report, no new surprises?
COACH HOLTMANN: Nothing different, nothing different. I don't know why they would have. They've beaten us twice. The same way they've played and attacked us.
Q. I know you're not really concerned with their team, but do you think they're an NCAA Tournament team?
COACH HOLTMANN: I thought that about them and Nebraska. I've thought that about both. But I don't study the metrics. Do I think they're talented enough and capable enough to win a game in the NCAA Tournament? Absolutely, absolutely.
Look across the board, even without Watkins. They're plenty good enough. They play together. They play hard. But whether they've done the necessary stuff throughout the year, and I've not looked at good wins versus, outside of our three, versus bad losses. I don't know what their metrics are like. I really don't. So I don't even know what ours are like.
Q. Speaking of the NCAA Tournament, you're looking at about two weeks until you play your first game; is that something that you're looking forward to the rest, or are you worried that you might come out a little flat?
COACH HOLTMANN: We've gotten that question a lot. I think we'll try to balance rest versus rest. And I've already talked to some people about that in preparation for it. It's obviously unique given the length of the layoff that we have right now. But we'll work on that and put a plan together here in place tomorrow.
Q. You said that you didn't really see anything different from Penn State tonight. Without Mike Watkins, did your game plan going in change any way on offense or defense?
COACH HOLTMANN: A little bit. A little bit. But Watkins was a presence at the rim in both games. But he did not -- he impacted the game, but it wasn't as much as their other guys. And they really have great depth on the interior.
So at the end of the day the guy that hurt us in previous games hurt us. I think his ability to affect shots at the rim hurts them and his size, but they've got really good interior depth.