Maryland-Mount St. Mary's Postgame Quotes

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Head Coach Mark Turgeon
Opening Statement:
I was encouraged tonight and I thought we played well. I thought we played a really good team that really played loose and made a lot of shots, especially in the first half. The only negatives we talked about were our turnovers in the first half and our transition defense was little suspect in the first half, but after that I thought we were really guarded. I thought we adjusted and stayed big in the second half and they were really small. I thought [Michal Cekovsky], Damonte [Dodd] and Robert [Carter Jr.] defensively in the second half in those very tough matchups did a great job. I thought our ball screen defense all night was really good. I thought our rebounding was terrific. They missed 42 shots and we got 38 of those rebounds. Really pleased with a lot of things and we continue to get better.”

On how to get more touches to post players:
“We have this big team and I think people are allowed to play physical because we’re bigger. I think as the game wore on we did a nice job of wearing them down. We got a few more offense rebounds and a few more high lows. It’s hard. I have these big strong guys and they are getting pushed 8-feet off the block. We’ll see. Hopefully as the year goes on our size will become more of a factor.”

On Jake Layman’s confidence:
“He is very comfortable. He is comfortable with the system; he’s comfortable playing in games. He has been through it all and seen it all and very relaxed. We have a very nice team, which allows him to get more open looks. We play more inside out than we did in the past. I think all phases he has gotten a lot better. Defensively he was good. Rebounding he was good. And of course he made shots. Seven out of 10 is pretty good. It’s good to see and I’m happy for him. He seems very comfortable and seniors should. He is playing like a senior. “

On whether large distribution of points from everyone will be common:
“I hope so. That’s the way it is set up to be. We are hard to guar because we have so many guys that can do things and I thought Rasheed [Sulaimon] tried to make plays for people tonight and he was terrific. He is going to have nights when he is in double figures. Jared is instant offense for us. I thought Cecko settled down and had some good offense out there tonight. It is nice to see. Those numbers are nice. It means we are a pretty good team and if we can average five guys in double figures than we have something going.”

On better perimeter defense in second half:
“I think it was 32-14 and I bragged about how well we were guarding in the time out. Then everything cut loose. I think they played loose and hit a couple. They are playing the No. 3 team in the country with nothing to lose. They got hot and some of it was because of our turnovers. I don’t think we did a great job of playing shots. I thought in the second half we did a better job playing shots and took care of the ball better to limit open looks. You have to give them credit though because they made tough shots.”

On Diamond Stone’s confidence:
“I thought he was good. The thing about Diamond is that he has a good attitude. He knows he has a lot to learn and there are some defensive things that we could teach him throughout the game. He is going to go a long ways as we move forward. Just little things. He is the only guy out there that doesn’t have college experience so it’s going to take a little longer especially on the defensive end. Offensively he has all the tools. I expect a lot out of him, but a pretty good first game.”

Sophomore Guard Melo Trimble
On what he liked from the game:
“Tonight’s win was big. It was the first game with a sellout crowd. I thought we played really well. We didn’t have too many turnovers. We all played with excitement and definitely played better than we did during the exhibition game.”

On playing fewer minutes:
“It definitely felt different, but really, I’m just happy for my teammates. I expect to play fewer minutes early in the season. Coach Turgeon sat me down and told me that. But, since we have so much depth on the team, we can still perform well even if I’m not in the game.”

On what the big men brought to the game:
“They gave us energy, especially on the defensive end. They’re long. Damonte [Dodd] and [Michal] Cekovsky played really good defense. They’re very active and they rebound, which are two things we’re looking for this year because we want to dominate on the boards.”

On his confidence late in the shot/game clock:
“I’m very comfortable late in the clock. I did it a lot last year. It’s really just confidence. The more I do it, the better I get at it. I air balled one today. It happens. But it doesn’t mean I’m not going to take the next one.”

On how the added talent has helped Jake Layman:
“Since we have a post presence and a lot of teams are going to key on me, Rasheed [Sulaimon] and Jared [Nickens], I think Jake will get a lot of wide open shots, because we can drive to the rim and kick it out. And also, when we throw it down into the post, teams are going to double our big men, which should free up Jake.”

Senior Guard Rasheed Sulaimon
On splitting time with different lineups:
“The special thing about our team is that we don’t look at the first five or the second five; we just have 10 good basketball players. One thing Coach tells us is to always play hard, whether you start the game or finish the game. A big thing that helped us is that we had more depth than the other team. We eventually wore them down and tried to take advantage of it.”

On the team’s size:
“We’re going to be bigger than a lot of teams we play this year so we just have to be smart. We need to play to our advantages. We have height down low as well as some shooters.”

On second-half defense:
“In the first half I thought we played good defense, they were just shooting well. We needed to make a few adjustments, getting them to take a few shots down low instead of being comfortable from behind the arch. We started to trust in our help and came out stronger.”

Senior Forward Jake Layman
On the team’s depth:
“Having so many weapons is nice to have. Coach always preaches to us to share the ball and we’ll be successful. All the big guys have been working hard to improve their game and it shows. It’s big to have all these guys come off the bench.”

On having five players in double-digit points:
“I think the points will be spread out this year. Teams have to worry about so many guys. If one guy is hot and they start to play him another guy will get hot as well. “

On his improved game:
“I feel great out there shooting and rebounding. This offseason was more about defense for me. Working on pressure and other things down low has been my main focus and I think I am starting to improve my game.”

Head Coach Jamion Christian
On The Mount’s game:
“We’re a good basketball team. We’ve got good guard play with guys who’ve played a ton of basketball together. And we’re just a really good basketball team. We’ve got a good front line with Taylor [Danaher] and Greg Graves, and so we can compete with a lot of teams. I think as we continue to progress through the year and just really continue to grow and get connected as a group, I think the abilities for this team are limitless.”

On Maryland’s size:
“With their size and strength, they can do some things to push you off the spots on the floor. I thought they did an excellent job. I mean when you’re looking at their team, you’re looking at a team that’s one of the best in the country and they’re going to have an opportunity to compete and play for a national championship at the end of year as they continue to grow and play more together.”

On Maryland’s depth:
“I think they have excellent depth. I think that their depth is pretty special, especially their bigs. I think those guys are really underrated right now. When you look at [Damonte] Dodd, coming off the bench with his strength, and he’s really intelligent defensively. And that really provides a difference. With [Diamond] Stone in there, who’s a freshman, he’s going to make some mistakes on defense but Dodd is so solid and really defensively anchors them so well.”

Junior Guard BK Ashe
On overall performance:
“You always like when the shots go in. I believe we shot 10-for-33 from the arc. Other than that, it was a well-coached game and we got the calls that we needed. Everybody executed the game plan well and we got good shots. I just think we needed more to fall. We played tough for the first 20 minutes, but then I felt like we lost ourselves. We still fought as hard as we could, but they were the better team tonight.”

On starting the season against a ranked opponent:
“We’re not trying to base our season off of wins and losses; we’re just trying to get better everyday. I’ve talked to one of our former players, and he told me to learn from these experiences playing against major teams. From there we just have to try and get better.”

On Maryland’s ranking:
“I haven’t seen anybody else play but they’re pretty good. Their two-guard, [Rasheed] Sulaimon, he was huge. I didn’t expect him to be that much taller than me. They were all so big and athletic. It wasn’t a surprise, but it kind of caught me off guard a little bit.”