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November 18, 2009 at 7:08 PM

Game thread: BYU at Washington

PURPLE POWER: Love it when Whitcomb won’t let her team lose and has healthy teammates around her who can help make it happen. The senior scored all 12 of the Huskies’ final points to guide them to a 67-66 win at Hec Ed. It felt like a breakthrough for the Huskies, who once trailed by as many as 10 points and weren’t doing a good job defending a noted three-point shooting team (10-for-18). But as Jackson said, good teams find a way to win and that was Washington. “I felt good and that we could do it,” said Whitcomb, who finished with a game-high 25 points. “But it didn’t feel like I was doing it all. I felt like it was a team thing and I wasn’t recognizing that I was scoring every time but that we were scoring and we were right there to win the game.” Whitcomb is right about the team concept. Williams and Lay tipped passes for steals, Mosiman set good screens and everyone but Rozier grabbed a rebound. It was all needed because the pressure from BYU was tough. And the Cougars were shooting a better 50 percent from the field. Yet the only that matters is that the Huskies won. UW will have Thursday off, then return to practice to prepare for another tough matchup in Gonzaga on Sunday in Spokane.
TREY BIEN: Coriann Wood hit a three-pointer with 5:05 remaining in the game that put her team up 59-50. With Rogers on the bench with four fouls and BYU hitting again, it appears the Huskies are out of options to stop the Cougars.
TIE GAME: McLellan is back in the game and hit a shot underneath to tie the game at 46 points apiece with 9:48 remaining in the game. BYU called time. The Cougars are having trouble against the Huskies’ 2-3 zone and the Huskies are finally able to break the Cougars’ full-court press to get back into the game. Whitcomb is scoring, but missed a key FT that could have helped the Huskies regain the lead.
TECH CITY: McLellan was called for a technical foul, her first of the season. She was tossed hard to the court by Riley. McLellan, who landed with a thud, didn’t appreciate the no-call and let Jones know about it. Only Jones didn’t care to hear it. Jones used her whistle again to tag Lay for a tech. She pushed Foreman on a drive to the hoop, getting a little extra oomph with the commotion. At least that’s how I saw it. UW didn’t agree from the stands to the sideline. Cougars are up 40-37 with 12:17 remaining.
RUMBLING: Two FTs by lay inched the Huskies within 36-35. Jackson said Lay was like an earthquake and she’s proving that true tonight. Lay tipped a pass for a steal and is driving the ball coast-to-coast for looks at the hoop. UW drew a shot clock violation and appears poised to take over this game with 14:08 remaining.
ROGERS OUT: Rogers was called for a tacky third foul, pulling her out of the lineup early in the second half. Moeaki missed both free throws and the score remains 34-30 BYU with 18:03 remaining in the game.
BIG FINISH: Credit Rogers for helping Washington pull within 34-30 at the break. BYU tried double-teaming her and hacking her, but Rogers made turnaround jump shots to give the Huskies a much-needed presence inside. She scored six points in the final 1:45 and is leading the team with 10 points. Mosiman is leading the Huskies with five rebounds. Nielson has seven points for the Cougars, whose three-point shooting has slowed to 6-of-11 overall. BYU also got a little sloppy with the basketball, accumulating 18 turnovers in the half compared to Washington’s 14.
PRETTY PASS: Mosiman, well covered by Moeaki, had a sweet no-look pass inside to Rogers to pull the Huskies within 34-26 of the Cougars. Two free throws by Morton shrunk the deficit to 34-28 with 49 seconds remaining in the half.
COUGAR TRACKS: Two more three-pointers and a fast-break layin off a Washington turnover and BYU is on a 8-0 run to build a 25-18 lead with 5:10 remaining before halftime.
ROSEY TO MURKY: Senior G Christinia Rozier got her team pumped with a defensive tip to collect a steal on a mismatch, but then bobbled the ball for a turnover on offense. She was pulled from the lineup when that miscue was converted into a three-pointer by BYU. The Cougars hit a second with 10:02 remaining in the half and lead 17-16. BYU is 3-of-5 from three-point range, hitting all three at the top of the arch.
PLATOON POST: Jackson said she didn’t really like running her posts in-and-out of the game two at a time. She was forced to do it against Portland State due to Rogers getting into quick foul trouble. But Jackson is doing it again tonight, running McLellan and Argens in the game for a couple minutes, then placing Rogers and Williams in. The coach is relying on her veteran backcourt, Whitcomb leading with six points. UW leads 16-11 with 12:13 remaining after a bucket by Argens.
ZONE UP: Using an aggressive 2-3 zone, the Huskies forced a turnover and lead 8-7 with 15:47 remaining in the opening half. Kingma checked in at the 16:12 mark and was part of the solid defense. The game has been a little stagnant as the teams, who haven’t played each other since the 1990s, try to figure each other out. Rogers and sophomore F Mollie Williams are also in the game.
Washington senior F Lydia Young has turned cheerleader (and part-time team bodyguard), opting to undergo season-ending right knee surgery to resolve her tendinitis. Young is now spotted center court pumping her team up and at times getting the crowd going.
She showed promise last year, but it’s up to the remaining players on court, including sophomore G Kristi Kingma. She will make her home-debut along with UW after suffering from kidney stones last week. She was hospitalized twice and believed she was healthy until waking Saturday morning light-headed, not playing in the one-point loss to Portland State.
The Dawgs want a better showing at Edmundson Pavilion against BYU, but don’t get much support from peers around campus. According to Kingma, they don’t even ask if her Huskies have won. They immediately start with, “So, did you guys lose, again?”
Kingma just shrugs it off.
“It doesn’t bother us,” Kingma said. “We know what goes on everyday. We’re working hard and we don’t let anything affect us. If we did, we’d be a mess.”
Kingma and teammates don’t understand the ire on the Web, either. Especially the continual “Fire Tia” rants after one game. F Liz Lay said people would probably be surprised to know how close the team actually is and how hard they work.
“It’s not the coach’s fault we’re losing the games,” Kingma said. “It’s a team thing. We have to hit the shots. They’re not out there making the shots or the turnovers. More than anything, we have to hold ourselves accountable and if we do the little things right we should be fine.”
Kingma, who started 26 games last season, will play off the bench tonight. She practiced this week, yet it’s uncertain how much she’ll play.
Coach Tia Jackson altered her lineup for the game, starting senior Laura McLellan inside and sophomore F Mackenzie Argens in place of Kingma. Jackson acknowledged that projected starter Regina Rogers wasn’t where she needs to be condition-wise.
“I don’t really know what to expect of myself,” Kingma said. “I’m just going to give as much as I can and if that’s a lot, it’s a lot. I haven’t shot in a week.”
Here are your starting lineups:
F Mindy Nielson
F Keilani Moeaki
C Kristen Riley
G Haley Hall
G Jazmine Foreman
F Sami Whitcomb
F Mackenzie Argens
C Laura McLellan
G Sarah Morton
G Sara Mosiman
Tonight’s officials are Lisa Jones, Bret Gervasoni, and Connie Pardue.



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