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March 5, 2010 at 7:02 PM

Game thread: Oregon State at Washington

HUSKIES WIN: Washington won a horrible game to watch. True, UW turned around and shot 52.4 percent in the second half while holding OSU to 20 percent, but it still wasn’t pretty. They needed the win, though, and they players knew it — even if Jackson said differently. There’s an afternoon practice and then majority are headed to Tacoma to root for Kingma’s brother at Class 4A state. “We’ll make curfew, there shouldn’t be any traffic,” said Kingma of getting back to be sure they have enough sleep for the 2 p.m. game on Sunday. Should be an emotional day as five seniors say good-bye. Two were key on Friday as Whitcomb had a game-high 14 points and five boards while McLellan added 12 and four.
UW ROLLING: The Huskies are shooting 44 percent from the field and have slowly built a 59-45 lead with 4:44 left in the game. Palmer hasn’t scored since the break.
SLUGGISH: Not much is going on at Hec Ed. You’d think the teams were trying to help build the new Sound Transit station across the parking lot with all the bricks being thrown around. We’re at 15:13 and the score is 39-33 UW. That’s a total of nine points scored after the break. UW coach Tia Jackson going small with Williams at center due to foul trouble.
HALFTIME: Teams are headed into the break and neither coach will be happy. For a brief moment, UW was getting offensive rebounds to compensate for missed baskets, but that has disappeared. Nix the shooting, too, and you have the OSU 33-32 halftime score. The Huskies aren’t doing a good job protecting the paint, allowing the Beavers 12 points there. OSU ended the half shooting 9-for-14 from the field after opening the game 2-for-8. The Beavers are also getting physical with Whitcomb, limiting her to 1-for-4 shooting. She has a team-leading seven points — five from the FT line. Washington typically plays better in the second half, however. Palmer leads her team with 10 points.
INTERIOR DEFENSE?: UW is allowing OSU inside with the ball and it’s obviously the Beavers’ range. They’ve made their last four buckets in the paint to take a small 33-30 lead with 48.2 seconds remaining in the opening half. Palmer is the main culprit, hitting a jumper and two layins.
BEAVERS AHEAD: A jumper by Futch and a FT by Rhea put OSU up 19-16 with 6:03 remaining.
FOUL TROUBLE: Neither team is shooting well, so it might not matter, but Rozier picked up a third foul and has to sit out the remainder of the opening half. Futch tied the score at 14 points apiece. There’s 7:47 remaining in the opening half.
THEY’RE ALIVE: It took OSU six minutes to make its opening FG, but now they’re shooting with ease. A jumper by Rhea made the score 12-10 UW with 10:44 remaining in the opening half.
FUN BUNCH: It hasn’t resulted in many points, but the lineup of Sara Mosiman, Christina Rozier, Mollie Williams, Rogers, and Kingma made for some entertaining plays and good offensive boards. UW leads 8-6 with 12:48 on the clock.
GET PHYSICAL: There’s talk of women’s basketball getting too physical and Greer’s attempted screen on Whitcomb as Washington brought the ball up the court may be an example. Greer stepped into the move in front of the officials, pinging Whitcomb backward. OSU coach LaVonda Wagner tried to argue the point during a timeout with 15:56 remaining, but the call was justified. UW leads 4-0 after a pair of baskets by Rogers.
Went to the lab with Comcast broadcaster Dan Giuliani and Washington remains in contention for the No. 7 seed in next week’s Pac-10 Tournament in Los Angeles. The Huskies just need Arizona to lose to UCLA in its season-finale on Saturday.
If so, Washington owns the second tiebreaker between the schools since it defeated Arizona State at home in January and Arizona was swept by the in-state rival. The Wildcats and Huskies split during the regular-season, which eliminates the head-to-head tiebreaker. The next is records against higher ranking teams in the conference.
As long as Arizona loses Saturday, the schools were equally swept by everyone until you reach ASU. A lot of hullabaloo for a measly No. 7 seed, right?
Well, considering No. 1 Stanford is waiting in the wings as the option if Washington is seeded eighth and wins its opening game against the No. 9 seed, it’s a better route for any possible tourney upsets. Cardinal coach Tara VanDerveer is contemplating limiting her players’ minutes to prevent injuries before the NCAA tournament, it’s doubtful anyone gets past them in the conference tournament.
Even a pesky Washington squad hoping to catch fire.
Of course, the Huskies still have to win one of their final games against the Oregon schools. And Oregon State could avoid finishing last in the conference with a win. The Beavers’ only Pac-10 win was against Washington State, which is ahead of them in standings at two conference wins.
Freshman G Haiden Palmer has joined junior Talisa Rhea as the team’s leading scorers, averaging 11.1 points to Rhea’s 16.3. The Beavers are young and not as good defensively.
But with seeding on the line, who knows? Let’s get to it with your starting lineups:
BEAVERS
F Talisa Rhea
F Kristen Tilleman
C El Sara Greer
G Haiden Palmer
G Julie Futch
HUSKIES
F Sami Whitcomb
F Mackenzie Argens
C Regina Rogers
G Sarah Morton
G Kristi Kingma
Tonight’s officials are Anita Ortega, Brian Hall, and Mark Munoz.

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