The Washington Huskies traveled across town for the first official “Road” game against the Seattle U Redhawks in Climate Pledge Arena. After the Huskies took down cross-state rival last week against Gonzaga, Seattle U was hoping to do the same to their cross city foes. It was trending that way for most of the game until the Huskies battled back to survive by a final score of 100-99 in Double Overtime.
Down 16 points in both the 1st half and the 2nd half, the Huskies were able to get enough stops at the end to take down the Redhawks and move to 7-3 on the year. Keion Brooks led the way with 22 points and Sahvir Wheeler was able to add 19 points and 14 assists off the bench.
Playing in front of a sparse crowd at Climate Pledge Arena, the game had the feel of an early Pac 12 Tournament game in Las Vegas where there wasn’t a lot of energy in the building. The Huskies would have to create their own energy but struggled out of the gate.
Moses Wood did get the Huskies started early, scoring 5 points off his first two shots from the floor. However, the Huskies would miss their next 7 shots, including a few close attempts from Franck Kepnang inside.
Koren Johnson also got the surprise start over Sahvir Wheeler, who would enter the game later but Johnson was given the defensive assignment to Sharpshooter Cam Tyson. Johnson made a couple good stops on Tyson early but picked up 2 quick fouls in consecutive possessions that forced him to the bench.
Nate Calmese got some early minutes, after not playing since November 28th versus UC San Diego. Calmese would hit his first shot with a corner 3-pointer and then hit a smooth runner off the glass for 5 quick points.
The Huskies defense however struggled to track down Seattle University shooters and was started by former local Bothell Graduate Cam Tyson, who hit 3 early threes. Former local O'Dea star John Christofilis also made a surprise appearance after missing the last 8 games with an injury. Christofilis came off the bench and filled up the scoring column with 6 quick points and looked like he was heating up.
Seattle U would jump out to a 21-11 early lead thanks to an 8-0 run but the Huskies would go on a small 5-0 run to get back into the game at 24-19 and looked to have momentum finally. However, that momentum would quickly disappear as Paris Dawson (5.3 ppg) knocked down 4 straight three-pointers in less than 3 minutes to help Seattle University extend their lead to 40-27. Seattle U would knock down 9 three pointers on 9/13 shooting in the first half (64%).
It would be a 1st half to forget for the Huskies defense and Keion Brooks. Brooks would go 0-4 from the floor with 3 turnovers in the first 20 minutes.
The Huskies were able to get a Franck Kepnang Dunk at the buzzer to close out the half trailing 47 to 33 at halftime.
Huskies Battle Back in the 2nd Half with Timely Outside Shooting
The Huskies would go with Sahvir Wheeler to start the 2nd half in place of Koren Johnson and Wheeler would help Washington with a couple of early layups. Wheeler would also find Franck Kepnang on a couple of baskets including a Monster Jam but Kepnang would fall hard on the floor and gingerly walked off the court. Kepnang would leave the game with 12 points and 6 rebounds and did not return.
Wilhelm Breidenbach would enter the game with 13:57 left and the Huskies down 54 to 41. Breidenbach knocked down a three-pointer and then scored on a nifty left handed layup in transition to force a Seattle U timeout and trimmed the lead to 58 to 50.
Seattle U would score on 3 straight consecutive possessions but the Huskies were able to cut the lead to 7 after Keion Brooks made his first FG of the game with 13 minutes left and another left handed drive by Wilhelm Briedenbach.
Keion Brooks finally started to get it going after grabbing his own miss for a tough put back. That play seemed to energize Brooks a bit as he then knocked down two straight 3-pointers to pull the Huskies within 4 points at 68 to 64.
Sahvir Wheeler would force a 5th foul on Kobe Williamson and Wheeler would have a chance to pull the Huskies within two but missed 1 of 2 free throws.
Near disaster would strike shortly after as Sahvir Wheeler fouled Alex Schumacher on a three-pointer. Schumacher would make only 1 of 3 but Seattle U would grab another offensive rebound, which led to Cameron Tyson getting fouled on another 3-pointer. Tyson would make 2/3 and extend the lead back to 8 at 73-65.
The Huskies would not go away after a couple of quick Sahvir Wheeler layups. Wheeler would also find a cutting Wilhelm Breidenbach two times and Briedenbach converted another nifty left handed layup to pull the Huskies within 4 at 76 to 72 with 3:33 left.
The Huskies would battle back to get within two and would go to their leading scorer Keion Brooks and Brooks would deliver with a tough jumper to tie the game at 78 to 78.
The Huskies would have a chance to take the lead but Sahvir Wheeler lost the ball on a drive and Alex Schumacher was able to score a driving layup to give the Redhawks a lead with 10 seconds left. Wheeler would drive furiously down the court and found Wilhelm Breidenbach who missed the initial shot but Wheeler was able to somehow find the ball fall in his hands and scored a tying layup to force overtime at 80 to 80.
The Huskies get their first lead of the game in Overtime
With the momentum on the Huskies side, it was Seattle University who scored the first 4 points of overtime. Wilhelm Breidenbach would answer again with a tough layup inside and was fouled for a three-point play to cut the lead to one.
The Huskies would go to Brooks again and somehow converted a tough mid-range pull up and was fouled as well to give the Huskies their first lead of the game. Brooks would miss the FT but the Huskies had the lead with 3 minutes left in Overtime.
Seattle U would not go away and scored their next 6 points at the foul line. With the Huskies down 5, Keion Brooks would answer again with a 3-pointer to cut the lead to 2. Anthony Holland would check in for defensive purposes and was able to corral a tough rebound to give the Huskies one last chance to tie the game. The Huskies would go to, guess who…. Keion Brooks who hit another tough pull up, this time left handed, to tie the game at 92.
Seattle U would have a chance to win a the buzzer but Alex Schumacher missed an open three and the game would be sent to Double OT.
The Huskies Survive in Double OT
This time the Huskies are able to get on the board first with a Sahvir Wheeler layup off a kick out pass from Keion Brooks. Seattle U could not keep Wheeler out of the lane all night.
Braxton Meah entered the game late in the first Overtime after limited minutes earlier and would start the 2nd Overtime. Wheeler would find Meah for a thunderous dunk to give the Huskies a 2 point lead again and would be Sahvir Wheelers 14th assist. Meah would play the entire Double Overtime and his size bothered Seattle University.
Cameron Tyson would answer with a fade away contested three with Keion Brooks all over him to tie the game at 96. Moses Wood would make a hustle tip in to give the Huskies a 2 point lead and then Sahvir Wheeler would score once more on a driving layup to give the Huskies a 100-96 lead with 1:30 left.
Washington had a couple of chances to put the game away and successfully broke the Redhawks press, which found Braxton Meah with the ball close to the hoop with a 2 on 1 advantage. However, Meah was called for traveling and took away a layup for Moses Wood with 13 seconds left.
Seattle would have another chance to answer. Alex Schumacher drove right for a layup and Keion Brooks was called for a questionable call but gave the Redhawks a chance to tie the game with 8 seconds left. Schumacher would miss the free throw but Seyi Reiley grabbed his 3rd offensive rebound in overtime to give the Redhawks one last chance. Schumacher got off a contested 3 at the buzzer and the Huskies held on for a 100-99 win in a come from behind victory.
The Huskies finished with 25 assists and shot 54% from the field and 47% from 3. Plenty to clean up but the Huskies battled back again after being down 16 points in both halves. The Huskies will play their last non-conference game this Thursday against Eastern Washington University at 6 pm.
- First one to 100 wins and the Huskies survive to move to 7-3 on the season. Keion Brooks led the way with 22 points on 8/16 shooting but it was Brooks 3 for 4 from 3 that helped the Huskies stay in the game.
- Wilhelm Breidenbach deserves player of the game after scoring 12 points, 4 rebounds and 2 blocks after Franck Kepnang went down with an injury. Kepnang and Breidenbach combined for 24 points, 10 rebounds and 2 blocks.
- Sahvir Wheeler chipped in 19 points and a season-high 14 assists, while Koren Johnson added 14 points and great defense all game long.
- After giving up 9/14 from 3 in the first half, the Huskies held the Redhawks to 2/13 shooting in the 2nd Half and both OT’s.