Wake Forest 65, Charleston 56 Quotes & Notes

Wake Forest Coach Danny Manning – “Well for us we are certainly pleased with the outcome of the game. I thought we did some really good things throughout the course of the ball game. We have to give Charleston a lot of credit. They continued to battle. [Grant] Riller’s probably one of the best guards in the country. He can get it at all three levels: behind the three-point line, in between, gets to the rim and distributes the basketball. He’s a terrific basketball player. I thought for our guys as a whole, it was a great team win for us because a lot of guys contributed for us. In a tournament like that, you need those minutes because they’re very valuable. We turn around and play tomorrow. We took some minutes off some guys and our bench was outstanding.” (On the performance of the defense late in the game) “For us, we want to go out and try to string together stops. We were able to string together a good amount of stops throughout the course of the ball game, and then be able to finish the plays and rebound the basketball. We had two guys with Olivier and Isiah [Mucius] having a double-double which is big for us cleaning up the glass, and that’s something that we also work on. [We’re] making sure we contested shots and rebounded the basketball is something we focused down the stretch.” (On Olivier’s game and only playing 21 minutes) “So he’ll be real fresh tomorrow. Throughout the course of the ball game, Ody [Oguama] picked up some fouls, Olivier picked up some fouls, and we went for a smaller line-up. And for Olivier to come in with an outstanding line; 21 minutes, 14 points, 14 rebounds, huge 6 of 8 from the free throw line. His minutes were huge for us and very happy with that production. We look forward to something like that tomorrow.

Wake Forest Coach Danny Manning – (continuing on Olivier Sarr) “I think a lot of it too was we had them setting a lot of high ball screens, and he set some great ball screens with pick and roll to the rim. We tried to space the floor. Brandon [Childress] was able to thread the needle to him a few times off that high ball screen for dunks at the rim. He set up good ball screens, ran to the rim, sat down on the post, and did a great job of finishing. (The value of having a senior like Brandon Childress) “Well throughout the course of the ball game were 6 for 21 from the 3-point line. We had some opportunities. There are a few shots that we’d probably like to take back, but a lot of those were good looks for us; we just didn’t knock them down. And having not only Brandon but Torry [Johnson] as well; I thought Torry was terrific for us as well. He was tasked with trying to slow Riller down and I thought he did a really good job of that.” (On facing Long Beach State University tomorrow) “I didn’t catch the game. I had it on in my room, but I was more-so going over my notes on Charleston. Long Beach is a team with a coach that’s been there forever. I’ve had a chance to get know him really well over the last 5 years and spent some time together in the off season. They’re a hard rockin’ bunch of dudes, and they always have been. And we know they’re going to bring their lunch pail and we’re going to have to battle. But we’re looking forward to that challenge. This will be more of a home game for them than us, but we’ve played some games on the road this year and used to a hostile environment.”

Wake Forest Center Olivier Sarr – (On coming off the bench) “When coming off the bench, it’s bringing energy to the team, a lot of talking on defense, and a presence in the paint.” (On Charleston cutting it to 2-point lead and stepping up his game toward the end) “It was just continuous for me and focusing on each and every play. Just getting the job done, and that’s what we did.”

Charleston head coach Earl Grant – “Give Wake Forest some credit, I thought they did a good job defending some of our actions. They beat us plus 13 on the free throw line so give them credit, we needed to play a little better. We cut it to three points with two and a half minutes to go, had a couple opportunities to execute and get that lead closer but they made the stops. They forced us into taking bad shots and we couldn’t get closer than three.”

Regarding their defense on Grant Riller – “I think they trapped some ball screens early; they switched some as well. They also put a bigger guy on him. He was at the rim, we thought he got hit a few times, but such is life they didn’t call a foul. He was aggressive but they did a good job of squeezing him by double teaming the ball screen.”
On Rebounding disparity – “I told the guys if you hold somebody to 35% that’s top of the country. The other part of it was when you make them miss you have to rebound the first miss. We didn’t do a good enough job of boxing out, so we have to learn from that. Certainly, we are going to have to do it tomorrow, if we are going to have success in that game.”
Positives from the game – “A lot of positives. We were undefeated when holding opponents to 65 or less last year so we did that. We need to clean up some defensive rebounding. I played a lot of young guys, a lot of my bench. We had it to three points we just needed to execute a little bit better. We settled for a couple shots with about 12 seconds in the shot clock where we could have gotten better looks. Being in the bonus we maybe could have gotten to the free throw line. There were a lot of positives, but we weren’t quite good enough tonight to win the game. Got to give Wake Forest credit, they had some guys who made some 3s who typically don’t make them. They also had a big rim protector who did a good job.”
Free throw disparity – “There was an emphasis for us to drive the ball. I thought we drove it, but we didn’t get the call. That’s life, sometimes it goes your way and sometimes it doesn’t. Again, it was +13 as far as the attempts they took and that’s a big number. I really don’t have an answer for that, we got to keep driving the ball and play strong off two feet. Hopefully when you get in there you make a strong attack move toward the rim that the referees can call. I thought the referees did a good job so can’t really complain about that. It is hard to overcome +13 on free throws and +13 on the glass.


Wooden Chips
• Wake Forest had two players get double-doubles in the same game… this marked the eighth time in Wooden Legacy history that a team had at least two double-doubles in the same contest, with the last one coming in 2016… the first time it ever happened was by Wake Forest against Baylor in the 2008 championship, when three Demon Deacons registered a double-double.
• Wake Forest improved to 4-0 all time against College of Charleston, but this marked the first game in the series that was decided by single digits.

Wake Forest (4-2)
• Wake Forest won despite shooting just 19-53 (.358) FG… the Demon Deacons have now won just four times in the last 46 games when shooting .358 or worse, but have won both times this season with that low a field goal percentage.
• WFU became just the second team since 2011 in the Wooden Legacy to win with a shooting percentage as low as .358 (in 2017 San Diego State defeated Georgia despite shooting just 25-73 (.342).
• Wake Forest shot well to start halves before going into slumps… WFU began the game making nine of its first 16 shots, then missed the last 11 of the first half… in the second half WFU opened up shooting 6-8 before finishing 4-18 to end the game.
• Olivier Sarr notched a double-double with 14 points and 14 rebounds, getting the second one of his career and the second one in as many games… both of his double-doubles this season have been as a reserve, and prior to these the last time Wake Forest had a bench player get a double-double was on 11/21/14 (Konstantinos Mitoglou).
• Isaiah Mucius also recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, and like Sarr, this was his second career double-double and second straight game with one.
• This was the third time in the last 11 games for Wake Forest in which two players had a double-double (all wins)… prior to this stretch, the last time WFU had two double-doubles in the same game was vs. Virginia on 3/8/17.
• Torry Johnson had his seventh game as a Demon Deacon with at least 10 points… this season Johnson scored three points in his first four games, and has now scored 28 points in his last two.

College of Charleston (3-3)
• College of Charleston is now 22-3 in the last 25 games when holding an opponent to .358 FG% or worse.
• Zep Jasper led the team with 13 points, marking the eighth time in his two-year career that he has scored at least 10 points… the Cougars had won each of the previous seven games in which he was in double digits.
• Grant Riller scored 11 points, tying Jarrell Brantley for third on the school’s all-time scoring list (now has 1,914 points)… his 11th point came at 11:59 when he made a lay-up and was injured on the play (did not score after that point).