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January 17, 2009 at 1:22 PM

Washington vs. Oregon State game thread

HUSKIES LOSE: Thanks to a late rally, UW didn’t lose by 20 or more for a third consecutive game. Instead it was just 69-55. The Huskies have been swept by the Oregon schools, having their worst Pac-10 start ever. For those keeping track, it’s now 139-points in defeats. Whitcomb led the Huskies with 17 points and Davis had a season-high 25.
BAD CALL: Liz Lay was called for a technical that shouldn’t have been. She was fighting for a rebound and wildly snatched the ball from her opponent. Officials didn’t like the mustard she put on the grab, though and called a tech. OSU made the free throws, but UW continues to scrap. It’s all too late, but they only trail 69-55 with 10 seconds remaining.
MCNEILL FINE: McNeill is back in the game.
STILL FIGHTING: A jumper by McLellan and three-pointer by Michelle Augustavo closed the gap to 53-38. Hec Ed is showing some life and fight behind the Huskies scrambling more to the ball, but they still need to show hustle every possession, which they have yet to do. There’s 7:27 remaining.
MCNEILL HURT?: McNeill took a hard hit to her right chest and was on the court for a while. She’s on the bench being examined. UW is down 44-20 after a McLellan basket, improving its shooting to 37 percent.
HALFTIME: Washington is lacking energy and again can’t find anyone to shoot. Rozier is the leading scorer at the break with 10 points while McLellan and Whitcomb, the team’s normal shooters, are a combined 2 of 9 from the field. UW is a combined 28.6 percent from the field and down 37-14. The Huskies can’t defend the three, allowing OSU to shoot 50 percent from outside. The team seems lost, so we’ll see what Jackson can tell the team to shake them out of this funk.
STANDING O: Hec Ed just recognized George Hickman, a Tuskegee Airmen who received an invite to the presidential inauguration on Tuesday. The crowd stood and gave a rousing ovation as he waved, standing near the Huskies’ bench.
MCLELLAN BACK: McLellan has re-entered the game. UW is down 28-10 with 5:00 remaining.
ANOTHER RECORD?: Washington is down 28-8 to a Beaver team full of energy. McLellan still hasn’t returned to the rotation and if the Huskies can’t improve on their 23.1 percent shooting (3 of 13), they will set another low for points in a half. That was set against California at nine last week. Rozier has all of UW’s points. Wait, this just in. Whitcomb became the second player to score, making a nice layin to keep UW out of the record books.
MCLELLAN HOT: McLellan was called for a technical foul that she didn’t feel was just. She pulled away from coach Tia Jackson when the latter was apparently trying to tell McLellan was she did wrong. McLellan wasn’t listening, however. She is currently on the bench with her face in her jersey and looks to be crying. Freshman Mollie Williams tried to say something, but McLellan jerked away. She has two fouls and it’s uncertain if she’ll be back in the half or game. Washington is down 20-8 with 10:04 left before the break.
KINGMA BACK: Kingma is returning to the lineup after suffering a high-left ankle sprain against Kansas State on Dec. 30. The Huskies are down 17-6 with 12:54 remaining , still giving up three-pointers but Roizer did make one of her own.
THREE-FOR-ALL: If you’re an opposing guard, Hec Ed is the place for you. The arena features a friendly three-point line where you can shoot all day and the ball is guaranteed to go in undefended. Just ask Davis. She’s the latest recipient, hitting two early treys to help put the Beavers up 10-3 with 15:30 remaining in the opening half.
Washington will be without reserves Lydia Young and Charmaine Barlow today against Oregon State. Both violated team rules and are being benched. It’s unclear whether they practiced on Friday, but they’ll be missed because of the energy they provided. Young can at times be wild on the court, but she can account for a few rebounds and baskets at needed times.
The forever rotating lineup does gain shooting guard Kristi Kingma, however. The Huskies need reliable backcourt help and Kingma looked good in pregame warm-ups. She’s moving a little gingerly with the left ankle, but it’s heavily taped and in a black brace for protection.
The matchup against the Beavers is another key game. The Huskies desperately need a win and the Beavers would like to prove that their 9-1 showing in non-conference play wasn’t a fluke. OSU’s strength of schedule ranking was 60th at the time while UW’s was 21st.
It’s a gorgeous day around Seattle. The drive along Lake Washington was picturesque with the sun making everything vibrant from the glistening blue water to the colorful fleece donned by runners. The type of day that makes you dread having to go inside — especially to watch losing basketball. Fans are filing into Hec Ed, anyway, possibly believing that the 125-points in losses Washington had in its past three games are in the past. We’ll see.
Here are the starting lineups:
HUSKIES
F Heidi McNeill
F Sami Whitcomb
C Laura McLellan
G Christina Rozier
G Sarah Morton
BEAVERS
F Brittney Davis
F Kristen Tilleman
C Tiffany Ducker
G Talisa Rhea
G Mercedes Fox-Griffin
Tonight’s officials are Michael Price, Bob Scofield, and Catherine Cornell.

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