Photo by Rick Kimball/ISD
Notre Dame Basketball

Vasturia Wants to Keep Winning

February 17, 2017

As with most teams, Notre Dame has experienced its highs and lows during conference play, but leadership has never been a question throughout the season for the Irish. Senior Steve Vasturia deserves credit for a large part of that, as he has never gotten too high or low.

The Irish needed his leadership and experience to overcome a double-digit deficit last weekend on the road, but it was simply having the ability to put a bad first half behind them.

“I think everyone in the locker room knew that this was a game we needed to win and we didn’t get off to the best start,” said Vasturia. “We had to put it behind us and we did a really good job of having a quick memory.”  

I just want to keep winning. - Steve Vasturia
Part of Vasturia’s leadership is his unselfishness and his willingness to be the jack of all trades as you can see with his 14.1 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 3.4 assists a night on the year. However, all the 6-foot-6 guard isn’t worried about his stat line each night. Vasturia simply wants to keep winning.

“I just want to keep winning, honestly,” explained Vasturia. That’s the most important thing for everyone in the locker room. I just want to keep finding ways to help this team do that. At the end of the day, that’s what we all want. For me, I can impact and help this team in a lot of ways.

“I want to continue to be aggressive offensively and staying on the backboard is something that’s going to be important for all of us.”

Winning is never easy on the road and especially when the other team has one of the best players in the nation. Vasturia knows Saturday’s game against North Carolina State will be a tough one, but it’s also a chance to embrace the challenge and get a 10th win in league play.

“They are very talented and they’ve shown that this year,” Vasturia stated. “They have guys who can score. We played a good game against them last year. It’s going to be another tough game. When we played there two years ago, it’s an awesome environment.

“It’s a great chance to get a win on the road.”  

Wolfpack freshman sensation Dennis Smith Jr. is definitely on the minds of Notre Dame’s players and coaches this week, but expect the Irish to use a wide variety of defenses to stop the point guard.

Notre Dame is sure to use its 2-3 zone to try to eliminate Smith from gashing them in the paint and Vasturia believes the zone can be a weapon.

“I think we do a good job and we’re pretty long as a team,” explained Vasturia. “When we had the two bigs in and then VJ (Beachem) on the back line the other night. We’re doing a good job of getting deflections and that’s something we haven’t always done in the past. We haven’t had active hands.

“For the most part, it’s a great to change things up on defense. Boston College was in a really good rhythm in the first half and we played a little zone and then they got out of their rhythm. I think that’s been good for us.”

To the naked eye, the Irish haven’t thrown too many wrinkles into the 2-3, but Vasturia says they have changed it a bit based on their opponent.

“I think sometimes it depends on the personnel and who they have in the high post, whether it’s a guard or a big,” said Vasturia. “We’ve kind of always played it the same and we’ve been really good at it.”
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