Commodores Fall to Siena, 83-62

A.J. Ogilvy (AP Photo/John Raoux)

The Commodores took an early exit from the 2008 NCAA tournament Friday night falling to Siena, 83-62, in Tampa.

Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings gave a lot of credit to Sienna after the game, "We congratulate Siena. They were the much better team today. Obviously, we're very disappointed in our play and in the outcome. But when you get to this point in the season, it's really imperative that you play your best. Particularly when you're a team like us that doesn't have a particularly big margin for error.

We didn't play our best. I wouldn't say that we've been playing our best. In other years we've been able to kind of get that switched around when the tournament has come, and for whatever reason we weren't able to get that done this particular season. But we're awfully proud of the season that we had. I'm proud of my players, I'm proud of their efforts. Again, we weren't a very good team tonight. And unfortunately for us, that's a lot of what we'll remember and that makes it a bitter pill to swallow.

You do the best you can, and sometimes it works out and sometimes it doesn't. Again, unfortunately, for us tonight it didn't."

The Commodores were in trouble from the very beginning. Freshman center A.J. Ogilvy would pick up a foul on the first defensive possession of the game. Alex Franklin would knock down the two free throws and the Commodores would never lead in the game.

The Commodores did not get the points from their supporting cast that they needed to make a run deep into the tournament. Jermaine Beal, Alex Gordon and Ross Neltner were only able to combine for 16 points on 6 of 18 shooting.

Southeastern Confernce player of the year, Shan Foster, had a tough night as well. He was just 1 for 5 from behind the three point arch and 6 of 14 total from the field. Foster had this to say of Siena's defensive effort, "They did a good job of switching out whenever we were trying to come off screens. Myself personally just making sure they stayed close to me. Not allowing me any space and things of that sort."

Ogilvy led the Commodores with 18 points on 7 of 15 shooting from the field. "I think more of the surprise was the way we came out and started playing. We thought we were going to come out and play a lot better defensively and get a lot better looks offensively. To come out and play the way we did it just wasn't really good," Ogilvy said after the game.

Siena was led in scoring by Kenny Hasbrouck who had 30 points. They also got 19 points from Tay Fisher off the bench. Fisher, who came into the game averaging 7.7 points per game, was 6 for 6 from behind the three point arch.

It is unfortunate to see the season end on such a low note, but in a few weeks Commodore Nation will look back on this season fondly because of all the good memories. Coach Stallings said he will especially miss this group of seniors, "They're extremely special. Not only as basketball players but more importantly and more so as human beings. They've been everything that we desire to have at Vanderbilt and in our basketball program, from a character standpoint, from an attitude standpoint. We talk a lot about being great teammates, and these guys have been great teammates the entire time they've been here. So they've really been the whole package. All five of them will have their degree in May, and there really isn't anything you could ask for more than what these guys were able to give.

I think their success and their records speak for themselves in terms of being the all time winningest class in the school's history I'm exceptionally proud of them and very, very appreciative of all that they've done."


Siena's Ronald Moore (25) and Vanderbilt's Keegan Bell (top) battle for a loose ball (AP Photo/Mike Carlson)

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