"Coming off the Christmas break, you never know what you're going to get but I thought the guys came out and played very well on defense. We got a lot of guys in the game; we got a lot of guys extended minutes to see what they can do," he said. "We were able to work on some things and get some of the guys working their way back into the lineup some minutes and some rest.
"We wanted on our 2-3 zone, wanted to see some of the younger guys and wanted to see how our guys responded. Defensively we have not played to my liking. We've been making strides ... we're starting to see a little more sense of urgency, a little more attention to detail in the defensive end," Becker said.
As for the game itself, UVM (5-8) sprinted to a 14-0 lead, finished the half ahead 45-21 and stretched out the lead over the final 20 minutes by employing its bench extensively. Hector Harold topped the scoring list with 18 points, followed by Dre Wills (13), Sandro Carissimo (12) and Ethan O'Day (10 points and 11 rebounds). Eleven of UVM's 12 players scored two or more points and everyone played at least 11 minutes.
"Obviously getting a win was the No. 1 goal but to play the way that we feel we should be playing, I think we took a step in the right direction," Carissimo said.
"The coach has really been pressing us as far as defense go. He wants us to start executing more properly on defense and tonight we kind of put some things together," Harold said.
David Johnson hit 5 of 7 3-pointers for a game-high 20 points as the Hornets (2-6) were 10-for-24 beyond the arc.
"That's something we have not really done this year. We have not shot 3s well at all. That's been one of our weak points," Krupinski said.
"A lot of teams are playing us zone and we have not reacted great to it so that was good to see. Hopefully that can kickstart us into our league schedule ... maybe some of those 3s will go down and make it a little easier to score."