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Washington Huskies Narrowly Survive In Win over Stanford Cardinal 67-64

Terrell Brown and Jamal Bey lead the way in scoring

NCAA Basketball: Stanford at Washington Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

In what looked like Washington could cruise to a double digit victory, turned into very tense moments late in the game. The Stanford Cardinal battled back down 22 points and as much as 21 points in the 2nd half to get within 2 points late in the game but the Washington Huskies are able to survive to pull out the victory.

Coming off an impressive victory over Cal, this would be a big test for Washington to face a Stanford team who has won 4 games in a row going into this game. This was also another revenge game for a UW player as Daejon Davis transferring from Stanford to Washington in the off-season so this game offered a lot of intrigue going into it. Washington came out strong early and put together the best 20 minutes of basketball in over 2.5 years but made everyone sweat in the 2nd half.

Both teams came out with a lot of energy early on. With the best crowd to date for Washington and sporting their White-Out T-shirts, the fans had something to cheer about after an early 5-0 Stanford run to start the game. Terrell Brown got it started with a rare 3 pointer and Roberts picked up where he left off against Cal with an offensive board and put back to even it up.

The Dawgs defense came out with energy again early on, creating multiple steals that turned into points. Stanford coming off 19 turnovers again Washington State was careless with the ball early on with 6 turnovers that led to 10 early points off turnovers for Washington.

Emmitt Matthews got Washington started on offense hitting two threes and a pair of free throws. Matthews shooting is starting to improve. He’s 11 for his last 12 from the foul line and 7 for his last 16 from 3 (43%). Unfortunately he picked up his 2nd foul with 10 minutes left and did not play the rest of the 1st half. His hot shooting would carry over to the rest of his teammates.

The Washington Huskies found a new player in the first half by the name of Jamal Bey. Great to have Bey join the team after a very slow start for the Senior in his first 13 games. Jamal Bey shooting 28.8% from 3 going into the game, hit 4 of his first 6 threes in the first half to lead Washington with 17 points. He also chipped in 3 steals and 2 blocks to help Washington build out to a lead as high as 22 points.

Stanford was able to chip away slowly by getting to the foul line and getting Washington in foul trouble. Both Nate Roberts and Langston Wilson picked up 3 first half fouls and Emmitt Matthews sat 10+ minutes on the bench with 2 fouls himself. Stanford just couldn’t stop turning it over however and UW was able to go into the half with a 43 to 25 lead.

Balanced scoring, taking care of the ball and smothering defense was the recipe. UW leading scorer and Steals artist in the Pac 12, Terrell Brown had 10 points and 2 more steals. Matthews chipped in 8 and Nate Roberts added 4 points and 5 boards before he got into foul trouble. Washington had only previously held a 1st half lead one-time all season.

Washington had 14 points in transition and 19 points off turnovers, the difference in the first half. When needed, the Washington offense looked a lot more fluid moving the ball around and setting strong ball screens but Washington’s bread and butter is getting out in transition off turnovers and missed shots.

Washington barely Survives in the 2nd half

Stanford coming off an impressive victory over Washington State a few days earlier, used a 23-0 run in the 2nd half to help win that game so it would be very important for Washington to keep the pressure going and not let Stanford control the 2nd half.

Terrell Brown would get Washington going early in the 2nd half by hitting his 2nd three of the game and scoring on his patented mid range jumper. Brown would score 7 early points to keep the lead over 20 but Stanford would come back and hit two straight corner threes to pull within 15 points with 14:04 left. Huskies over collapsed and Stanford found their open shooters in the corner. Stanford would go on a 10-2 run to pull within 13 and they would not go away. Nate Roberts stopped the run with another offensive board and put back to give Washington a 15 point lead to go into the under 12 minute time out 56-41.

When Stanford is not turning it over, they were able to find really good looks in the lane for layups and dunks but Washington would keep up the pressure and forcing turnovers.

Terrell Brown would bail out Washington again with his 3rd three of the game at the end of the shot clock to pad UW’s lead 59 to 43 with 12 minutes left but Stanford would come screaming back again with a 10-0 run to pull within 6. Daejon Davis, would pick a great time to hit his first field goal of the game to give Washington a 9 point lead with a clutch 3 pointer.

Washington would go into the Under 8 minute Timeout with a 62 to 53 lead and it would be “hold on” time the rest of the way. In fact, Washington would not hit another Field goal for the final 8 minutes of the game. Stanford would go on a 11-3 run to pull within 2 points late in the game.

Washington was able to turn to Terrell Brown to draw critical fouls and hit 3 very important free throws and needed everyone of them. Brown did miss a big free throw on the front end (Achilles heal for UW this year) with a minute left but was able to hit 1 of 2 free throws to give UW a 66 to 63 lead with 15 seconds left.

Washington would play a man to man defense on the final possession and almost created another steal but Harrison Ingram appeared to get off a 3 point attempt as he was being fouled however they called the foul on the floor. Matthews fouled out with 2.8 seconds left with Ingram to the line shooting a one and one. Ingram misses the first but Washington is called for their 2nd lane violation of the game! Ingram makes the first and then tries to miss the 2nd on purpose. The 2nd attempt doesn’t draw iron which is a violation and meant the Huskies would have to inbounds the ball with no timeouts.

Terrell Brown passes full court to Jamal Bey who was almost tackled out of bounds and the ball is deflected out of bounds. Luckily the ball stays with UW and Brown is able to successfully inbounds to Cole Bajema. Bajema hits 1 out of 2 free throws to give UW a 67 to 64 victory and gives Washington a 3-2 record in the Pac 12.

This was a game of two halves that saw Washington play their best half of the season and then follow it up with a struggle of a 2nd half. You knew Stanford would make a run after their big run against Washington State but Washington had many chances to close this one out.

A win is a win of course, but definitely leaves a little bad taste after almost blowing a 22 point 2nd half lead. A lot to be happy about however and could be a really important lesson for Washington moving forward. Still looking for a complete 40 minute game but Washington is playing markedly better in the last 5 games.

Washington was led by who else, Terrell Brown 25 points, 4 assists and 4 steals. Jamal Bey had a great first half with 17 points but disappeared in the 2nd half with 0 points and had several open looks. Daejon Davis only had 5 points but none bigger than the 3 pointer with 7:58 left and had 4 assists and 1 steal as well. Nate Roberts had 6 points and 8 rebounds but struggled from the floor on 3/8 shooting.

Washington survives and heads to Oregon next to play Oregon State and Oregon in a chance to perhaps steal another Pac 12 win. Next game is Thursday January 20th at 8:30 PM at Oregon State.

Double Bonus Dots:

  • Jamal Bey Had his best performance of the season, mostly in the first half. As poorly as Bey played in the 2nd half, don’t think UW wins without Bey’s performance.
  • Nate Roberts had 3 offensive boards that led to his 6 points but struggled shooting. If he could somehow improve his touch, it could make Washington much more dangerous but there is also a reason why Roberts is open on those pick and rolls.
  • Washington moves into a temporary tie with Colorado for 5th place in the Pac 12.
  • Washington created 21 Turnovers but most of them came before the final 8 minutes. Creating Turnovers has been Washington’s identity as of late. When teams can take care of the ball and force UW to run an offense, UW struggles. Easier said than done with how quick and lengthy UW is on defense.
  • Player of the Game: Terrell Brown is the easy answer but going with Jamal Bey. Don’t think UW win’s this game without him and provided 3 steals and 2 blocks on defense.