It was rarely pretty but the Washington Huskies finally pulled away from D-II Seattle Pacific for a 70-61 victory in a home exhibition game. UW got out to an explosive 11-0 start but quickly went cold. The Dawgs had a scoreless streak of nearly 7 minutes during the middle of the 1st half as SPU took a 15-20 lead during that time. The Huskies crept back into it and trailed by 1, 26-27, at halftime.
The Huskies got out to another quick start in the 2nd half sparked by transition offense but couldn't shake the Falcons. Back to back Nowell and Crisp 3's gave the Huskies a 37-29 edge but SPU came back to tie it at 40. Eventually though the Dawgs found some separation and held a 63-53 advantage with 4 minutes to go. The lead stayed around 10 for the rest of the contest before the final of 70-61. Jaylen Nowell led the Huskies in scoring with 23 points.
This was an extremely lackadaisical effort by Washington and it felt like they stopped taking things seriously after the quick 11-0 run. Hop will have plenty of ammunition to show the team that they haven't accomplished anything yet despite their AP poll ranking and charity exhibition win at Nevada. The Huskies open the regular season at home on Tuesday 11/6 at 7:30p against Western Kentucky.
- The reigning DPOY Matisse Thybulle absolutely dominated SPU early picking up right where he left off. He had 5 deflections and 3 steals in the first 5 minutes as UW got out to their 11-0 lead. He ended the night with 8 which was one short of the UW single game record.
- Noah Dickerson didn't play much coming off a minor injury for which they held him out of the Nevada game. He seemingly was elbowed in the face early in the 2nd half and Hop decided not to chance things and he sat the rest of the game. Even when in though, he didn't seem very effective as the guards couldn't get him the ball often and he was instantly doubled when he did touch it. Dickerson finished with 8 points and 3 rebounds in 14 minutes.
- All 4 of the freshmen saw playing time in the 1st half although only Bey and BPJ got any minutes in the 2nd. BPJ had a dunk waved off when Crisp was called for a charge dishing it off to him. He came in for 2 possessions in the 2nd half and deflected a ball into the basket on D and was called for a push off on O and was promptly pulled.
- The only Husky not to appear in the game was Hameir Wright but he went through warm ups and looked fine to my eye. Hop didn’t state why Wright didn’t play in his post-game press conference but said that “he’s ok” and left it at that.
- Jaylen Nowell led Washington in scoring although it was a somewhat understated performance. He finished with 23 points and 6 rebounds and looked like the only Washington player capable of getting his own shot for most of the game. Nowell will once again be relied upon to stir the drink on offense for the Dawgs.
- David Crisp finished with 20 points but unfortunately for the team he had just 1 assist and 3 turnovers. One of those giveaways involved him trying a spin move for basically no reason and dribbling it right into his defender’s waiting arms. Crisp was certainly not the only guilty party as Washington finished with 6 assists and 19 turnovers. One of Hop’s catch phrases for the team this year is “one more” as in one more pass but the Huskies certainly didn’t do it tonight.
- Washington struggled at the line as they went 21 of 32 at the stripe including missing the front end of three 1-and-1’s. Luckily on one of them Jaylen Nowell was able to come up with the rebound and put it back in.
- The Huskies experimented with their press several times tonight and it usually worked to great effect. Although there was a stretch in the 2nd half where they were called for 3 consecutive fouls on what looked like a potentially successful trap which bumped SPU from 3 fouls to in the bonus in about one minute.
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