Wake Forest Coach Danny Manning – “Long Beach State played with a lot of energy and very active on the defensive end and created some issues for us. I thought our guys did a good job of going into the half with the lead and taking care of the ball. The one thing we did talk about is getting to the free throw line more in the second half, and we were able to do that and knock down their free throws in the second half. We got contributions across the board from a lot of different guys, whether it was scoring the ball, rebounding the ball, or being in the right spot at the right time. I think our fast break points were something that were very key for us. And one of the biggest stats was we had 20 points on second chance shots to their zero. We gave up six offensive rebounds, that we didn’t let them convert, and that’s a great stat. We’re very pleased and happy with the win.” (On getting to the Championship) “We’re excited. That’s always the goal. We came out with the goal to win this thing and we’re in the situation and have that opportunity.” (On the long stretch in 2nd half without an FG but many FT’s) “We continued to talk about guarding and doing things on the defensive end. Yesterday we played 14 minutes without score, but we continued to guard and rebound. It was our goal to get the ball below the free throw line. We had the chance to have success and kick it out in that zone of 1-3-1 where they tried to scramble us around. I thought we had great poise in attacking it and getting the shots that we wanted. We got shots late in the shot clock at the rim because of our poise.”
Wake Forest Guard Brandon Childress – (On What it means to the team to have six guys in double figures) “It’s just shows that the ball’s not sleeping. We’re doing a good job of feeding one another. Early in the game it was Adrien [White] and I who had it going, but we didn’t want to settle for jump shots and had to get the big fellas involved. So, we got Ody [Oguama], we got Olivier [Sarr] involved in the paint. We just fed off each other’s energy. But being in double figures is huge and we’ll need to need that for the rest of the year.” (On playing in an in0season tournament championship game as a Senior) “It’s a blessing as my first time playing in a championship in college.” (The chemistry this year) “The chemistry is definitely going I was preaching that before the season was going. The comradery of our team, the bonding we built over the summer; it’s just amazing to see the guys really want each of us to succeed. Coach Manning preaches ‘family’ all the time. We put our hands on each other’s shoulders and help each other.
Long Beach State Coach Dan Monson – “I like where my team is going. I think we’re getting better, but we weren’t good enough today. Wake Forest controlled that game pretty much. The tempo, we really couldn’t make a run because we couldn’t keep them off the foul line or off their offensive rebounds. Those were two things we knew coming in. Easier said than done, and they did a really good job. We got frustrated with reaching fouls way too much. It’s hard to come back when you’re not getting stops. That was a key to last night coming back was getting a run of stops together and score off our defense because this team’s going to have to do that. Losing Drew Cobb obviously hurt that being our best defender. He’s spearheaded that last night. That play at the end of the half hurt it. I didn’t do a great job and one guy goes the wrong direction, and we didn’t get the shot we really wanted. And then they threw the half-court shot. It was a six-point play, because it was a 3 that doesn’t go and a 3 that does go. Instead of being down 2 at half, we’re down 8. I don’t think we ever really recovered from that. That was as close as we got. Ut’s disappointing, especially the rebounding because it’s been something we’ve been trying to focus on since Costa Rica. Coming off our best rebounding game of the year yesterday, to regress a little bit back; that’s disappointing. It’s not something that we’re panicked at yet with this team, but we have to focus on getting better. As I told them, if today makes us better for March, then we’ll take it. Today we weren’t as good as we need to be.” (On what was Cobb’s injury) “Ankle… I’m not a trainer, I’m not a doctor, but I’ve been doing this a long time and it didn’t look good to me. Watching his ankle turn and touch the ground. It was right in front of me.” (On holding Wake Forest without an FG in a 7-minute stretch but allowing more FTs) “I think we held Providence to 0 FGs the last 7 minutes, and 1 of the last 10; so defensively we’re doing a lot of great things. Today we were just a little tired, behind and reaching. They did a really good job of getting the ball inside and putting foul pressure on us. They didn’t score FGs, but they scored plenty of points because they were at the line all the time.” (On 4 players in double figures) “I think we’re getting better. Two weeks ago, our offense was horrendous. We were at Stanford with 38 points with 5 minutes to go. We’ve come a long way in this preseason. At LBSU it’s truly a preseason; at Wake Forest it isn’t. They’re trying to get a resume for At-Large bid; our league’s going to get one bid if we won today or didn’t; we just have to get better. Fast points are hard; it’s hard after a free throw or even a made free throw. What’d they miss, one free throw? We’re just happy to rebound on that. Our fast break points are going to be down if we’re not getting stops and they’re not shooting free throws all the time. I’m thrilled that we had 20 assists yesterday and 19 today. We’re starting to trust each other and know where each other’s supposed to be. That part of it is very positive. I told the team the only thing not fixable that I can’t seem to fix is the rebounding, because everything else is very fixable. They’ll get much better with experience. After Sunday we have one game in the next 15 days between Finals and where our schedule is. In those 15 days, we’ll have 10-12 good practices. But right now, we have to get that. We’re banged up and had guys limping all over the locker room. Yesterday was an emotional and draining game. We just didn’t have the energy we had yesterday. We put them in this tournament because we’re going to have with win three games in March to get to the NCAA tournament, so this is good for them. But they haven’t been through that. That mentality and that mindset is more important to me that the rebounding.
• The point differential of 13 points in the day two opening game was equal to the total point differential from the four games on day one (1, 9, 1 and 2 point games).
• Wake Forest established a new Wooden Legacy record by sinking 24 of its 25 free throws (.960), the best FT percentage in the tournament’s history.
• WFU scored 51 second half points, which is just three shy of the Wooden Legacy record for either half.
• This marked the first ever meeting between these two teams.
Wake Forest (5-2)
• This win marked the third time this season that Wake Forest won despite being outshot from the floor… WFU had won just four of the previous 63 times the Demon Deacons had a lower FG% than the opponents before the Columbia game this season… WFU has now won three of the last four times it has been outshot.
• Wake Forest grabbed 19 offensive rebounds, its most since 11/10/17 (also 19, vs. Georgia Southern)… this was just the fifth time since the start of the 2010-11 season the Demon Deacons had as many as 19 offensive rebounds.
• Wake Forest scored 20 second chance points, compared to zero for Long Beach State.
• Six Demon Deacons scored in double figures, marking the first time since 11/10/18 (North Carolina AT&T) that has happened.
• Brandon Childress led the team in scoring with 18 points, his 10th straight game reaching double digits… this was his 52nd career game scoring in double figures.
• Andrien White made a 3pt-FG at the first half buzzer, but then Wake Forest went 0-10 on 3pt-FGs in the second half.
Long Beach State (3-5)
• Six of Long Beach State’s eight games this season have been decided by at least 10 points
• Long Beach State finished the game strong from the field, making nine of its last 10 shots… LBSU lost despite outshooting Wake Forest, just the ninth time LBSU has lost in the last 50 games when having a higher FG% than the opponents.
• LBSU is now 3-0 when holding teams to 65 or fewer points, and 0-5 when allowing 69+ points.
• In the two Wooden Legacy games, Long Beach State has had 39 assists on its 51 made FGs.
• Michael Carter III led the Beach in scoring with 18 points while contributing a career high nine assists… the only other time a Beach player had 18+ points and nine+ assists since the start of the 2014-15 season was Justin Bibbins on 2/1/17 (20 points, nine assists).
• Chance Hunter scored 17 points before fouling out, marking the sixth time in eight games with the Beach he has scored at least 10 points.