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Nov. 14, 2014

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South Carolina Head Coach Frank Martin
Opening Statement
Really good opening win for us. My biggest concern was that [North Florida] returned all their perimeter players and they were really good last year. They could really score and I thought defensively we did a really good job until a minute and a half to go in the first half. And then I think we got a little immature and we started playing the score rather than playing the game. Then we gave up some 3s there at the end of the first half, which kind of deflated us. When I made those substitutions at 18:30 or whenever it was, I don’t even remember who I put in, I think it was Mindaugas [Kacinas] and Brian Steele. And then we had gotten down to 15 or 16, they popped it back up to 28 or 29 right away and we played really well for that stretch in the second half. I told our team, good opening win, but we didn’t play very maturely in the second half.

On Marcus Stroman’s first game as a freshman
I thought he played more mature than our upperclassmen. When I say upperclassmen I mean guys that have been around here. He kept his head and got us in offense most of the time. Took a couple of questionable shots in the first half, but heck he’s a freshman. Duane [Notice] and [Stroman] did an unbelievable job on their point guard. You can say the guy had 21 on 13 shots and one assist from the point guard spot, which is kind of what our defense wants. We want that ball to stick and not be passed and force guys to play one on one and we did that. I think Marcus played pretty well today. I told him this in the locker room, he allowed the guys that have been around here who decided not to play the second half who were just going to jog around, Marcus allowed them to impact how he played. He’s got to understand that that can’t happen.

Senior Guard Tyrone Johnson
On the offensive rebounding
Coach Martin always tells us to rebound the ball, play good defense and reward ourselves with rebounding in transition. First half we did that and second half we kind of didn’t do that. We have to come in and watch film and come in tomorrow and fix those mistakes. For the first win of the season that’s ok. We’ll take it. But we know we have to come in tomorrow and we have a big one Tuesday [to prepare for].

On the excitement for Tuesday’s matchup against Baylor
First we just have to thank the fans, I don’t know how many people were here but probably at least 10,000 so we want to thank them first. They had the gym rocking tonight so we were excited about it. But coming into [Tuesday’s] game, we have things we have to work on. They are a much better, stronger team. We have a bitter taste in our mouth from last year going there [to Baylor] and losing. We want to come in tomorrow, Sunday and Monday and prepare to get another shot at it.

Sophomore Forward Demetrius Henry
On finding the lane open early
[I didn’t really expect it] but the guards made good penetration and I got in the right spot to get easy buckets.

On seeing all the hard work come to fruition in the first game
It’s just the first step and we have to keep building. But it’s definitely a good first step and we have to build off of it.

North Florida Head Coach Matt Driscoll
Thoughts on the game
Obviously they are a physical team that rebounds the ball and obviously they are a little bit short as far as numbers, but those guys are so physical and they do a great job of rebounding the ball. They are going to have a very good year because those are two crucial things you have to do and they are really good at it.

On how the team handled Gamecocks’ presence in the paint
Well, obviously they outscored us by I think 28 points in the paint and they did a great job of trying to get the ball into the paint off the dribble, just finding drop-offs which is impressive on their part. So, give them credit because they went to their strengths which is impressive.