The Huskies are back..... in the winning Column. After two consecutive losses, including a close loss down in Eugene, the Washington Huskies were able to exact a little bit of revenge in Corvallis, with a 67 to 55 victory over the Oregon State Beavers.
The Huskies and the Beavers hooked up for the 312th time in history, in what could be the final matchup in Corvallis for the foreseeable future. The Huskies put together their best defensive effort of the season, holding the Beavers to 34% shooting and an opponent low this season of 55 points. The Huskies also led the entire way for 40 minutes.
Keion Brooks led the Huskies yet again with a near double double with 23 points and 9 rebounds.
The Huskies looked comfortable offensively in the first few minutes of the game, scoring 4 field goals on 3 assists. Two of those field goals would come from Moses Wood, including a wide open three-pointer after being left alone. Sahvir Wheeler also was able to knock down a 3-pointer, after missing his previous 12 attempts coming into this game.
The Huskies defensively were able to force a few misses, which helped the Huskies get out on the break. Washington got out to a 12-7 lead after hitting 5 of their first 9 shots to start the game but then missed 5 straight field goals. Despite the shots not falling, the Huskies were able to generate open looks, which would be a good sign for the game.
The Huskies would get a nice spark from Senior Anthony Holland, who came off the bench to hit back-to-back three-pointers from the corner. Holland would pick up three quick fouls but helped spark an 11-0 run for the Huskies. Keion Brooks started off on a slow start early on but was also able to knock down a 3-pointer to force a Wayne Tinkle Timeout.
The Huskies were able to extend to a 23 to 9 lead off of 7 assists on the first 9 field goals with a lot of good ball movement. The lead could have been even larger as the Huskies had several wide open looks but were able to build out a nice cushion. Not sure if Oregon State was daring the Huskies best shooter to shoot but Moses Wood found himself wide open several times early on but did miss 4 of his first 5 shots from outside. Wood would finally make Oregon State pay again with an open 3 to take a 27 to 12 lead with 6 minutes left in the half.
The Beavers started the game ice cold but credit to the Huskies defense in the 1st half with several deflections and 5 steals. Oregon State was able to finally get a few buckets in a row to get back within 12 but the Huskies would answer again to extend the lead.
Keion Brooks really came on in the last 5 minutes, scoring two consecutive and 1 plays and a pair of free throws to help extend the lead up to as much as 22 points. Brooks would chip in 17 points in the 1st half to help the Huskies take a 20 point lead into the locker room. The 20 point margin would be the largest first half lead in the Mike Hopkins era.
The Huskies would finish the 1st half with 11 assists on 14 field goals and hold the Beavers to 26% shooting. Moses Wood also added a couple of basket saving blocks, including a breakaway layup that was assumed to be an easy basket until Wood wiped it away.
The Huskies Withstand An Early Run Before Pulling Away
As good as the 1st half was for Washington, the 2nd half could not have gotten off to a worse start for the Huskies. The Beavers were able to start the half on an 9-0 run and both Sahvir Wheeler and Braxton Meah picked up their 3rd foul in the first 3 minutes of the 2nd half.
Moses Wood was finally able to get the Huskies on the board with a corner 3, his 3rd of the game, which would also be Wood’s 1,500th career point. Sahvir Wheeler quickly re-entered the game with 3 fouls but then collided with Wood going after a rebound that sent Wheeler to the ground for several minutes. Luckily, Wheeler would come back into the game moments later.
Jordan Pope, Oregon State’s leading scorer, started the game shooting 1/10 but started to heat up in the 2nd half. Pope scored 5 quick points to pull the Beavers within 9 points with 13 minutes left. Paul Mulcahy was able to answer on the other end with his first points of the game and Keion Brooks was able to knock down a pair of free throws to build the lead back to 49 to 36. Brooks would soon after follow up with a put back dunk for his first field goal of the 2nd half.
The Huskies defense stepped up again to help start another 11-0 run. Washington was able to force a few contested shots and get out in transition after a couple of steals, similar to the 1st half 11-0 run. One steal led to a Sahvir Wheeler breakaway layup and converted an and 1 to give the Huskies another 20 point lead at 58 to 38.
Jordan Pope would continue to hit shots on the other end, hitting 5 in a row to help the Beavers cut the lead back down to 14. The Huskies started to use up as much clock as possible to slow the game down but were able to get a pair of Moses Wood Free throws and a spinning Koren Johnson Layup to help keep the lead at 18.
After a quick 5-0 run for the Beavers, Sahvir Wheeler threw a pass from almost half court to his former Kentucky Teammate for a highlight dunk to help seal the game with a 64 to 48 lead. Wheeler would add another layup and a FT to help put the game away.
The Beavers were able to go on a 7-0 run in garbage time to make the final score look a lot closer than it was but the Huskies hold on for a 67 to 55 victory and move to 13-11 (5-8) on the season.
By far the best defensive performance of the season against a Pac 12 opponent this season, which has been beat up pretty good all year defensively. The Huskies did hit 8 threes but left a lot of meat on the bone with several wide open shots to really put the Beavers away.
Washington heads home to play the Bay Area schools, facing Stanford Thursday at 6 pm.