Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Kevin Ollie wasn't happy with UConn's narrow exhibition game win

Some video and quotes from UConn's 70-62 win over Southern Connecticut in its exhibition opener Tuesday night:

Kevin Ollie wasn't pleased:

“Got the first one out of the way. Southern came out and played a real good game, defensively. They played real well. We forced a lot of shots, didn’t finish a lot of layups, but that’s why you call it exhibition. We’ll get better from it and make sure we come out and play a little harder against Assumption.”

Asked if he "expected more" from his team, Ollie was incredulous:

“I want to shoot better. I mean, I don’t even know what that question’s about. I don’t want to shoot 36-percent (from the floor) or 58-percent (from the foul line). But, it happens, you move from it and you learn from it.”

“I think the guys will be a little bit more coachable. They haven’t been bad, but you can coach ‘em a little harder now, after this kind of performance.”

Sam Cassell, Jr. was a highlight, scoring 17 points and hitting a trio of 3-pointers in 31 minutes off the bench.

Said Ollie:

“Sam was good. He hit some 3’s. We still have to be better defensively. But, Sam can play. He’s gonna be a spark for us. He can stretch the defense out. I’d like to see him penetrate on a couple of his 3’s. But, he knows how to play. Very crafty, can shoot it with the best of ‘em. He’s gonna be a good player for us.”

A reporter pointed out to Ryan Boatright that Cassell doesn't play like a young player.

“He ain’t a young player," Boatright responded. "He’s older than me! But Sam played great. We’ve all got to get better on the defensive end, but he shot the ball great. I was trying to find him as much as I can.”

Indeed, Cassell was born in May, 1992; Boatright in December, 1992.

Rodney Purvis on Cassell:

“He’s a very poised guy. He’s not gonna wow you with any dunks or anything like that, (but) he can make any shot -- contested shot, it doesn’t matter -- he can shoot the ball.”

It was a tough night for Purvis, who shot 2-for-12 from the floor and finished with seven points. Funny thing is, his shots didn't look bad, for the most part -- they just didn't fall.

I’ve never been the type of guy to make excuses. I’m gonna get back in the gym, probably tonight or tomorrow. I’ll be back. I don’t have any worries about missing shots.”

“Every shot felt great, I felt like every shot was going in. But, you have those days. It’s the game of basketball. I’ll be back, I ain’t worried.”

Ollie was pleased with Daniel Hamilton's play, saying he "played at a Level-5, energy-wise."

Hamilton and Kentan Facey each grabbed nine rebounds. Amida Brimah had a double-double (12 and 11) and Boatright led the Huskies with 19 points.

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