Vanderbilt-South Carolina postgame quotes

March 9, 2013

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Vanderbilt Head Coach Kevin Stallings

Opening Comments:

"I'm proud of our team for hanging in there this season and fighting until the end. South Carolina got in a bit of a run in the second half when they made two or three three-pointers in a row, but for the most part, we did a good job. I think we took care of the ball against their pressure and they had to play against our set defense, which I thought was critical."

On Vanderbilt's free throw shooting:

"We were able to get to the line more in the second half. Kedren [Johnson] did a good job of getting to the foul line."

On the upcoming SEC Tournament starting for Vanderbilt on Thursday:

"There have been other teams that have won their conference tournaments after playing five games, although I wouldn't be confident about our team winning five games in five days. We're happy to play in the tournament. I'm excited for our team. It's a great place to have the tournament, in Nashville."

On Vanderbilt forward Rod Odom:

"If he hit that last three (in the first half), I think the house would have come down on him. His run got started with a backdoor layup. He has played better for us at the end of the season, which is part of the reason we've had so much success."

On being the defending SEC Tournament Champions:

"I don't think that's going to make any shots for us. We're proud of that championship. We'll always be proud of it. We're proud of that team coming together at the right time and doing some special. That's a pretty neat moment in our program's history."

Vanderbilt forward Rod Odom

On his 16 first half points:

"Dai-Jon (Parker) made a couple great passes to me and that got me going. I got my confidence up and was able to get inside a couple times. I got a lot of good looks that were set up by my teammates."

On how much more confident the team is at the free throw line now:

"I think a lot of guys didn't have game experience and hadn't been in those situations. When you miss a couple, it really messes with your confidence. They've really settled down and the coaches really helped with that by staying after practice and shooting more free throws."

On what is different now compared to a month ago when the team couldn't hold onto leads:

"One thing that resonated with me is that Coach (Stallings) said when a team goes on a run, our body language was really bad and everybody would drop their shoulders. We were like, `Oh man, this is happening again.' I think now, when a team goes on a run, we know we have to stay composed and makes shots and make our free throws. I think guys have a lot more confidence in themselves down the stretch."

Vanderbilt guard Dai-Jon Parker

On closing out the game at the free throw line:

"I think it was a big game for us as we go down the stretch. I think we got the chance to show our poise and maturity. We did a good job today, as we went 23-of-28."

On if he called `glass' on his three-pointer:

"No I did not, but everybody knows the bank is open on Saturdays. I didn't have to call that one. The backboard isn't up there for no reason, so I guess it helped tonight."

On going into the SEC Tournament as defending champs:

"People probably forgot we were the defending champs, but we're not going to look at it that way. I think it will give us a good chance to get off our feet (by not playing until Thursday). It should help motivate us since we are the defending champs. We're coming up from behind, so look out."

South Carolina Head Coach Frank Martin

Opening Comments:

"I give a lot of credit to Vanderbilt. I'm a fan of Coach Stallings and it's been fun watching him coach those young kids and the way they've grown since back in November. I enjoy watching their team play because they play the right way."

On if Vanderbilt concentrated on locking down Brenton Williams early:

"Obviously when a kid comes off a 38-point game, I think as a coach you address that with your team, and obviously they did that. I don't think Brenton utilized some screens that we were trying to set for him early in the game as aggressively as he did a couple days ago."

On if he has talked to his team about the SEC Tournament:

"Those are things we'll address over the next few days. You coach the season and then you coach the postseason. I don't believe you integrate the postseason and the regular season because they are two separate entities, two separate set of emotions. We have guys who have been through it and guys who haven't, but it's the first time we're going through it as us (this year's team). We'll regroup like we have all year and be ready to go and try to play the best game we've played all year on Wednesday."



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