What Shaka Smart said after Texas’ season-ending OT loss to Nevada

Texas men’s basketball wasn’t able to ride a 14-point lead to victory on Friday, losing in overtime to Nevada in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

The loss dropped Texas coach Shaka Smart to 50-50 overall in his tenure as the Longhorns’ coach. Few losses, however, may have stung more than the team’s season ending defeat at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn.

Here’s what coach Smart had to say following the heartbreaking loss that ended Texas’ March Madness run far too soon:

Immediate thoughts after the loss

“It’s a devastating loss. A terrible feeling right now. Nevada deserves a ton of credit.”

“We put ourselves in a spot to win the game early in the second half and didn’t finish.”

On letting Nevada back in the game

“They did a good job taking away some drives, but we got a little hesitant at the stretch. When you have a lead you have to stay aggressive and keep attacking.”

“We missed some shots. We had possessions at the end of the clock where we didn’t get anything that we wanted to — that was a big difference-maker in the game.”

“The two biggest keys were transition defense and keeping the three point shot away from [Nevada]. Being up nine [points] in the NCAA tournament, you know they’re going to do everything they could to come back. They had nothing to lose, they were attacking and we didn’t stop them.”

Moving forward

“Right now we are extremely upset about the game. To give you the simple answer, we need to add one or two more winning plays…it’s a cruel assessment, but when we’ve played in the most overtime games in the country, one play does make a difference.”

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