BATON ROUGE, La. — Close games are becoming the norm for Johnny Jones and his basketball team.
Behind 23 points from Duop Reath and 20 points from Brandon Sampson, LSU defeated Charleston 75-65, but that 10 point difference is a little misleading. Charleston tied the score at 65-65 with less than two minutes remaining, before a series of turnovers and fouls led to the LSU victory.
After the game, Johnny Jones had a couple of thoughts on his team’s performance. Here’s a transcript of what he had to say.
What Johnny Jones said:
- I knew we’d certainly have a good challenge on our hands tonight. We know these guys have been in some tough environments. They had the ability and reason to come in here extremely confident tonight. It’s a great return victory here for us to be able to get that victory for us against that team in the fashion that we did and the way we had to play down the stretch.
- I like the play of our post guys. And I love the unselfishness of the guards. As the game played out it became a focal point there late. I thought it was a great team win and the opportunity to go undefeated at home in non-conference play.
- I just like the way that [the team] doesn’t get distracted. They come out of timeouts looking to make the next play. I thought they made a nice run and we had to fight back to make some plays. I thought our team was poised under the pressure in that last stretch.
- I think it’s the focus. I thought we were able to lock in. I thought we had some errant turnovers and unforced errors. We need attention to the turnovers against a team like this. 18 was a bit much for us. But I like down the stretch the focus and the execution down the stretch.
- I liked our numbers inside. I thought our post guys and their post guys, I didn’t think their bench was deep enough in the post. We had post guys who stepped out and started shooting jumpers instead of going at the rim. We have to allow our guards to make those types of plays as the game goes out. If we’re trying to go out the post guys, that’s what we’ve got to do.
- I commended [Blakeney] at half because he only took three shots. He affected the game in other areas. He didn’t press in the second half. Then we had to go to him and he hit a big three. If he wasn’t making the play, he was making the right pass, helping others to score.
- We talked before the game, we’re going to play for 40 minutes or however long it takes. I guess Duop was thinking forever long it takes. He continued to play on. We like to play until the whistle. I guess he was trying to play until the second whistle.