January 31, 2013 at 10:25 PM
Video: Arizona’s Nick Johnson
Here’s video (above) of Arizona sophomore Nick Johnson who scored a game-high 15 points to lead the eighth-ranked Wildcats to a 57-53 win over Washington.
Johnson also head C.J. Wilcox to 11 points on 4-for-16 shooting.
(On getting the win) “Coming in here, we knew that Coach Miller had never won here. They have a great atmosphere, a great team. They’re always a tough, physical team. Coach challenged us at half time to go out there, play together and play hard, and that’s what we did. It wasn’t pretty at all, but we battled again and pulled it out.”
(On turnover problems) “At times we hurt ourselves, and we have to get better at that. I think we finished with 17 turnovers—5 in the second half, which is really what we want every half. I know we had 12 in the first, which is something that we have to get better at.”
(On fixing turnover problems down the stretch) “Just focus. We knew that by turning the ball over we were missing out on a lot of shots that could be taken. So you just have to focus in and make plays.”
(On late free throws) “I definitely knew that I needed to make them. I went 1-for-2 then 2-for-2. I just didn’t want to get it to the point where I missed and they got an easy bucket or something like that.”
(On Coach Sean Miller’s reaction to slow start:) “He was mad. Any coach would be furious in that situation because take away twelve turnovers and the game would have been so much different. And it’s a factor of us. You could say they’re going out there and making us turn the ball over, but we’re passing the ball into deflections, we’re losing it on drives. It’s a factor of what we’re doing and he only sees so much of what we’re doing on the court, and it kind of hurts him, and it hurts the team. But we stayed with is, only had five turnovers in the second half, and made the most of our plays.”
(On overcoming adversity in getting the win) “It was team ball, kind of like the Oregon game. Everyone contributed tonight. We had some good plays. Kevin came in and hit a three. It was a team effort tonight. It wasn’t just one guy hitting. It was also about defensive rebounding. We battled and eliminated their second shots. Early on they got a lot of second shots, they got some easy ones. And that’s not a play you can call. So if we limit them, push the ball in transition, get some turnovers, it opens up for us. And we made some big free throws and kept the lead.”
(On starting slow) “It’s been hurting us. It’s a factor of us finding a rhythm early on. This happened against UCLA where we we’re not connecting. I think it has a lot to do with our passing game. When we’re passing things become easier, instead of just one-on-one ball, trying to beat our man and get to the rim. Early on Aziz blocked three shots because we’re just dribbling the rock. He’s going to block shots when he sees them coming.”