Washington took an early lead and despite a sloppy performance that included a season-high 18 turnovers, the Huskies hung on in the second half for a 73-62 win against Tulane in front of an announced crowd of 1,646 at Devlin Fieldhouse.
“In the second half we couldn’t put the ball in the basket,” coach Lorenzo Romar told the Associated Press. “We had three people in foul trouble in the first half and when we subbed (the offense struggled). We had to mix and match and kind of survive it. … We made it a lot harder than it needed to be.”
It’s the first road victory for Washington, which had been 0-3 away from home, including a pair of neutral-site defeats in New York against Indiana and Boston College. The Huskies also lost at San Diego State.
Tuesday’s contest is the only one for UW that will not be televised.
C.J. Wilcox captured headlines and plenty of attention after eclipsing the 1,500-point plateau. The senior guard moved into 11th place on Washington’s all-time scoring list with 1,502 points. He needs two points to catch No. 10 Louie Nelson (1,504) and 14 to chase down No. 9 Steve Hawes (1,516).
Other than Wilcox’s milestone, Tuesday’s outing was somewhat forgettable.
The Huskies were fantastic at the free throw line (22 of 28) and they held the Green Wave to 39.3 percent shooting, including 1 for 14 (7.1 percent) on three-pointers.
However, Washington’s defense wasn’t always stellar. The Huskies committed 23 fouls, which sent Tulane to the charity stripe 27 times. The Green Wave made 17 at the line. UW’s transition defense was also repeatedly burned and allowed 12 fast break points.
The Huskies led by as much as 12 points, but Tulane closed to within three points in the second half.
“We did a good job on defense early then kind of relaxed,” Wilcox told the AP. “We got in foul trouble and they took advantage. We came out a little flat in the second half and they stayed close.”
Prosperity didn’t come easy for the Huskies who improved to 6-4. They’ll to sharpen up the defense if they’re going to upset No. 10 Connecticut on Sunday at Alaska Airlines Arena in a game that could boost their sagging RPI.
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