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    FIGHTING IRISH

    Jan. 27, 2007

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    Notre Dame Head Coach Mike Brey Quotes

    On the first half of league play...
    "It was a heck of a league win. To be 5-3 halfway through the league, that's what we talked about trying to do before we go into the second half of the league."

    On contributions from several players...
    "Different guys stepped forward. Rob Kurz was great. They really took Russ [Carter] out of it. They really defended him. A lot of teams are trying to do that. Ryan Ayers did his job. And I can't say enough about Tory Jackson. He's playing like a junior or senior point guard out there."

    On the upcoming game at Syracuse...
    "We've always played well there. We've played against the 2-3 zone. It'll be a big challenge for us. I know our guys will be excited. If we go in there and throw ourselves around like tonight, we'll be alright."

    Sophomore G Ryan Ayers

    On his three-point shot near the end of the game...
    "It was a situation where Tory was coming off a ball screen from Luke, and he was able to get in the lane and find me. My guy helped because Tory got in the way, and I was able to knock it down. It was a great look."

    On stepping up and hitting the big shots...
    "It just felt really good to be out there at crunch time and pull out a win and help my team. It was a really good feeling."

    On the difficulty of high pressure situations like this game...
    "These are situations that you have to be prepared for, and we practice a lot of game situations in practice. Just going out there and being confident, and [knowing] my teammates are confident in me, I was able to step up and be accountable."

    Senior G Colin Falls

    On Villanova's Mike Nardi...
    "He played really good defense. He was trailing a lot and he got right up into me, but we screened a little bit and I got some shots. He's a good basketball player, and they play really good defense."

    On the absence of Kyle McAlarney...
    "He knows he's still on this team. From our perspective, he's still with us. He's a good friend of ours."

    On being 5-3, the team's current record, instead of 4-4 in the Big East...
    "It's huge. You put yourself in the second half of the schedule with two games above .500, and we'll probably be, by the time things shake up, in the top five or top four in the league. We've got a great chance to get a road win Tuesday night."


    Villanova Head Coach Jay Wright Quotes

    On the start of the second half...
    "Unfortunately not only did we not start efficiently and affectively, but we were fouling right away."

    On Notre Dame's success this season...
    "I don't think it was surprising for any coaches in the league or anyone who played them last year in those close games. We came out here last year saying, `You know we don't want to see them again, they're probably going to get it going next game.' We thought they were going to be good this year. They are a really good team."

    On Tory Jackson and Colin Falls...
    "We were so concerned about Jackson driving the ball and Colin Falls. He's really tough to guard and really moves around the ball well. He's really good, a really good college player."

    On Curtis Sumpter's increased playing time...
    "He's been feeling better. I think he got a lot of good looks this game. I didn't expect to play him that much."

    Senior F Curtis Sumpter

    On his final shot attempt...
    "I felt like I had a good shot. I was open and I just wanted to take it. At the end of the game, you're not going to get too many looks and if you get one, you have to take advantage of it."

    On Villanova's early second-half foul trouble...
    "We know at some point in the game we're going to get into situations where we probably get into foul trouble. We just wanted to stay positive and keep playing hard."

    On the quick turnaround for Monday's game at Pittsburgh...
    "I think we'll be OK - we've done this before. Guys understand that [this game] is over now and all the focus is on Pitt."

    Freshman G Scottie Reynolds

    On Villanova's early second-half foul trouble...
    "We came out and kind of got out of rhythm. Notre Dame did a great job forcing us to do things we didn't want to do. We were on the road so we just had to keep a good attitude and fight through it."

    On Notre Dame's offense...
    "Notre Dame has multiple scorers and a lot of guys that can do a lot of different things. Colin Falls did a great job mixing it up by driving and shooting. They just did a good job on the boards as well. At critical times when we needed a rebound, they got it instead of us and that was the ballgame right there."

     

     

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