Head coach Mike Brennan and forward Larry Motuzis spoke after American fell 60-57 to Holy Cross, dropping the Eagles to 5-15, 2-7 in the Patriot League. See below for full video and select quotes.
"The zone's tough to crack. I thought we were confused a little bit early on. We didn't do a lot of things that we worked on. But it's different going against it in practice than actually facing a team that works on it every day."
On the late possession that got Larry Motuzis an open 3
"Yeah. It was a great play by Sa'eed. He's always going to draw attention. He had a bunch of assists tonight. So you can't ask for a better look — Larry wide open in the corner shooting a 3. We'll take that all day."
On the last possession
"It's hard because you don't know what they're gonna be in — a 1-3-1, a 1-2-2 or they're switching, so you're trying to tell your guys to set the ball screen but then read the play. You don't want to take away an opportunity from them. And then it's like one of the guys has to notice in order to call timeout in that situation."
On Jehyve Floyd
"Yeah, he's a handful, he's athletic. We don't get a ton inside right now so we're asking Sam to do a lot and he's out there the whole time trying to guard him, in the post wrestling with him that takes a lot of energy. He's done that to a lot of teams in the league."
On the close losses:
"It's very tough. You're in all these games. You're one, two plays away from winning the game. ... After losing it hurts, but it is encouraging. Everyone comes back to practice ready to work. We know we can beat these teams. At that point it is encouraging knowing we can hang with any of these teams."
On the 3-point shooting (8-42 last two games)
"Knocking down shots. Like you said, we are getting a lot of open looks — just gotta put those in. I mean we've got guys who can really shoot it."
On now facing PL teams a second time
"Definitely a lot more comfortable. I think the biggest thing is knowing the personnel on each team now, knowing the way they play and just about finding our own rhythm."
On Jehyve Floyd
"Yeah, we knew he was a big guy. A little surprised by how athletic he was — I'll give him that."
On doing better against zone defenses
"I think more guys need to cut. I know coach told me — I probably should've cut a lot more times. Finding guys in overload. And then we just gotta make shots. I think we did get good looks out of that zone. Just didn't make shots we should've made."