Arkansas vs. Vanderbilt
January 14, 2006
Arkansas Head Coach Stan Heath:
“We had a tremendous crowd today. I am proud of our players. They showed a lot of character today. They have been a little tense but I told them just to have fun on the court. They played the way I know they can play. We had a tremendous effort.
“Vanderbilt is an outstanding shooting team. They were 38 percent from the field and 50 percent from the three-point line. They are better from outside than inside. They were difficult to guard. We had to take away their layups and free throws. We did a great job of that.
“Jonathon Modica responded well and was effective with the transition. Eric Ferguson and Charles Thomas did well off the bench as well. Eric is a danger when he goes straight to the rim.
“Our team got into a rhythm tonight and I think we can begin a nice roll. We need to win on the road.”
“It’s always a good feeling to win at home in front of our fans. For us to bounce back today, it really shows our team’s character after we started 0-2 (in SEC play). We’ve been struggling with rebounds, and I just wanted to give my team a boost.”
“We basically wanted to make sure we didn’t give up any backdoor cuts, and when we took that away from them, we really threw them off. We were more aggressive and got the ball to the interior. Our bench brought us a lot of energy. We need Eric (Ferguson) and Sean (McCurdy) to continue to push the ball and bring energy.”
“We got their big men in foul trouble, so they relaxed in the post, and we decided to attack them. This was a big win. We controlled the tempo throughout the game. We worked on rebounding in practice, and we had to come out with a lot of fire power on the boards.”
“They fought hard, and made some great plays. (Shan) Foster made some big shots. We can’t fold, especially down the stretch. They’re a great team with great coaches.”
Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings:
"I thought the story of the day was that Arkansas was better at every turn of the game than we were. We wanted to out-aggress and out-energize them, and we were not able to do that. They played with more energy. They dominated on the backboards, so it was a tough day for us. We did a good job of getting back in the game in the second half, but we ran out of gas. You have to play really well on the road to win in this league. We didn’t and they did.
“We went to man because in zone defense we would stop them on the first possession, and then we wouldn’t get the rebound. It would’ve been nice to control the game and historically they play better against man than zone defense, but we weren’t able to rebound. They got to the foul line a lot. We were never able to get into a flow because we would foul or didn’t rebound.
“They are great athletes and have great defensive presence inside. They have enough shooting. They are just really, really athletic and long. We would get inside and Hill would block our shots. He played better defense than we did offense.”
On Darian Townes: “I think he’s one of the best offensive post players in the league. He is very, very talented. He has good touch in the post and is very long.”
Vanderbilt Guard Shane Foster (On only 5 first half points):
“I just tried to play aggressive and help our team regardless of my points. Derrick Byars stepped up in the first half to help fill the hole.”
Vanderbilt Guard Derrick Byars:
“When we came back and tied the score art 53, I believed we would build a lead, but we could never get over the top. We prepared well for this game but did not match Arkansas’ intensity and that was the difference.”