Just one winner in Saturday’s Guess the UW Score contest. Congratulations to olderdawg who predicted Washington would win 108-77. The score: 108-79. Great job.
I understand many posters are unable to make it to games, but we’ve had just one person this season claim their big prize of a hot dog and soft drink at a UW game. I’m thinking of a new prize and welcome ideas. Keep in mind, we’re doing this on a shoestring budget.
Let’s move forward. Only one Pac-10 game on the ledger today.
Portland at Washington, 7 p.m. (FSN)
AND THE UW-PORTLAND WINNER IS …
The Huskies 94-70.
I’m glad I’m not an oddsmaker because I wouldn’t know what to do with this game. Las Vegas says UW wins by 19, but keep in mind the point spread is a number that’s supposed to create wagers on both sides.
Washington has had so many lopsided wins lately that it’s gotten to the point where you expect them to rack up 100 points against mid-major teams like Portland. That’s no disrespect to the Pilots. They’re a quality WCC team, but if the Huskies play their normal game, they should win. If they play an above-average game, it should be a rout. And if they play a really good game, which they usually do at home, then it could get out of hand really quickly.
Both teams lost to Kentucky. Washington fell 74-67 and Portland was toppled 79-48. The Pilots also lost to Washington State 84-68 nearly two weeks ago at KeyArena. All three games are telling and all signs point to an easy win for the Huskies.
The Pilots are tailor-made for UW’s defense. They’re a fantastic perimeter-shooting team and the Huskies have outstanding perimeter defenders starting with Justin Holiday. Portland has decent size, but it’s not dominating, which should allow Matthew Bryan-Amaning to have a big game offensively and Aziz N’Diaye to control the glass. Luke Sikma will be the best rebounder on the court, but the Pilots average just 34.7 rebounds, which is 223rd in the nation.
Portland star Jared Stohl is struggling scoring 13 points total in the past two games. If he doesn’t bounce back in a big way, the Pilots don’t have a chance. Portland uses an eight-man rotation, which includes two underclassmen at guard (Tanner Riley and Derrick Rodgers). Not sure if they’re ready for the defensive pressure they’ll see tonight.
Despite two defeats, Washington hasn’t played a lousy game this season and that’s the unknown factor here. If their three-pointers aren’t falling and they get outrebounded and Portland is hitting its three-pointers, then the Pilots can keep it close. I don’t see them winning, but maybe they can keep the Huskies from cracking 100 for the third straight game. That seems absurd to suggest, but that’s where we are with Washington right now.