Washington would have loved to have sent this group of program changing seniors out with a win at home against rival Oregon. Unfortunately, that’s not how this game played out as the Ducks upset Washington 55-47 at Hec Ed. The loss deals Washington their first home loss of the season, ending a 15-game home winning streak.
Oregon’s defense dominated the Huskies, stifling them offensively. With 2:47 seconds to go in the first half, Oregon held Washington to just 8 points, six of which were scored on two Matisse Thybulle 3-pointers. Oregon ran their biggest lead of the game to 16 points in the first half. Of their first 19 shots, the Huskies missed 17 of them while also turning the ball over eight times. They finished the night with 15 turnovers. Washington managed to double their point total in the final 2 1⁄2 minutes, but still entered halftime down 27-18. Those 18 points are the fewest the Huskies have scored in a half this season.
After finishing the first half on a 10-3 run, the Huskies started the second half strong by quickly closing to within 3 points of the Ducks less than three minutes into the half. However, the Huskies wouldn’t get any closer than 3 points the rest of the way. In a back and forth second half, it felt like every time the Huskies got close, Oregon would respond with a run of their own. Junior guard Payton Pritchard was the Ducks leading scorer with 16 points, including three 3-pointers. He also contributed 5 steals on the defensive side of the ball.
The Huskies were able to get back to within three after Nahziah Carter’s and-one with 11:09 to go made it 37-34, Ducks. However, Oregon was in the driver’s seat and the Huskies never got closer than four from that point on. After a series of desperate attempts to score as the clock winded down, the Huskies just weren’t able to keep up with the Ducks who pulled away to win 55-47.
Offensively, Jaylen Nowell lead the way for the Huskies with 17 points, while Noah Dickerson had 14 points and 16 rebounds. As a team, the Huskies shot 33% from the floor while going a miserable 3-20 from behind the arc and shot 70.6% from the line. David Crisp was anything but crisp tonight, as he scored just 4 points while committing three key (and sloppy) turnovers. Thybulle also had three turnovers while Dickerson had four.
Despite the loss, Thybulle was still able to make history by hauling in five more steals (as well as three blocks) to tie former Cal Bear Jason Kidd’s Pac-12 season record of 110. Knowing that the Dawgs will play at least one more game against a conference opponent in the Pac-12 tournament next weekend, Thybulle should have a very good chance of beating that record. He is averaging 3.5 steals per game.
Washington, now 24-7 on the season, will have four days to lick their wounds and recover from losing two of their final four games. While this game may have an impact on their NCAA tournament seeding, the Huskies are locked as a the 1-seed in the Pac-12 tournament. They’ll sit out the opening day of the tournament thanks to their first-round bye, then face the winner of No. 8 USC vs. No. 9 Arizona on Thursday at 3 p.m. The game will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network.