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November 19, 2011 at 1:30 PM

Game thread: Cal State Northridge at Washington

HUSKIES WIN: For the third consecutive game Washington started slow and for the second time, it was able to use a second-half rally to win 73-67 against Cal State Northridge. I understand Rogers’ point about having a young backcourt, new system, and new roles. But coincidentally CSUN (2-2) nearly had the same thing and was able to implement its game from jump. This is Flowers’ second season coaching the Matadors, but the freshmen backcourt looking for a big post inside rings a bell when thinking of UW. CSUN was able to do that, Erving finishing with a game-high 21 points and 10 boards. UW was buoyed by FT shooting, Wetmore going 9-for-10 from the line in the second half while Rogers went to work inside, both finishing with a team-high 17 points. McGuff said it was good the team learned a lesson as it rallied for a win, instead of also suffering a loss. “We just had a big win,” said McGuff of the victory against Seattle U. on Wednesday. “Sometimes you think things are going to come easy to you and they don’t. You’ve got to be ready to show up every night and do the things that make us a great team and you’ve got to do that from the tip…We played really well in the second half and hopefully we can continue to get better.” The Huskies (2-1) hit the road on Tuesday, playing another Big West opponent in UC Santa Barbra on Wednesday. UW plays at San Diego State on Saturday. In between, the entire team plans to have Thanksgiving at former walk-on Amanda Johnson’s families home. AJ remains with the team, suffering knee injuries. “They’re good cooks, too,” Wetmore said of Johnson’s family.
NO POINTS, NO PROBLEM: Mo-Will hasn’t scoredm but put in the game for her defense, she grabbed a key rebound and forced Sharpe into a turnover. Couple that with Wetmore going 8-for-8 from the FT line, including a pair with 26.2 on the clock, and UW appears to have a 70-65 win in the bag. Whew. It’s a 10-2 Washington run.
BRIEF LEAD?: A nice pass from Argens inside to Rogers gave the Huskies a one-point lead with 3:27 left on the clock. Wetmore pushed it to 66-63, the Dawgs’ largest of the game. There’s 3:17 remaining.
FLIP FLOP: The lead is being batted between the teams after the Huskies first tied the score at 43 points apiece. The Score is stuck on 55 with 7:23 left in the game. Wetmore just committed her fourth foul, though. She’s sending CSUN to the line and may nee to sit until later in the game. She’s helped spark the offense in the second half along with Davis’ solo work in getting to the hoop. They have a combined 22 points while Rogers has 15. There have been six ties in the second half.
STAND UP: Washington forced another turnover and A-Dub picked up a Wetmore miss to score a layin and tie the game at 43 points. It’s a sparse crowd, but it’s on its feet making noise.
GOOD STAT: Second half has started and UW is still missing shots as CSUN is 4-for-8 from the field. But Washington is 111 of 13 from the FT line. Add a three-pointer by Davis and UW is closer at 43-39 with 14:40 left in the game.
HALFTIME: The teams went the final 5:28 of the opening half without scoring off a field goal. A painful sight as UW made its “run” mainly off FTs. The Huskies made nine to pull within 33-25 with 3:18 left. Williams fouled Sharpe with 1:57 remaining, putting her on the line for the final 35-25 halftime score. While it’s good UW’s defense is getting better, the team is shooting 27.6 percent from the field and allowing CSUN to shoot 51.7. UW is also getting outrebounded 20-14 and CSUN’s bench is outscoring it 8-6. Washington has to continue the intensity on defense in the second half and find a way to make its shots or it’ll be 0-2 against the Big West conference to start the season. The first loss being to UC Davis in the opener. Not good. Rogers leads UW with seven points. Davis has six turnovers, getting outworked by CSUN’s freshmen guards Guay (four steals) and Sharpe, who leads her team with 10 points.
SHOWING FIGHT: McGuff inserted senior F Mollie Williams in the game, who brought some fire to the lineup. Her pass to Rogers inside and Wetmore’s driving layin have the Dawgs within 33-20. The defense is forcing turnovers and getting CSUN in foul trouble. But it’s still not a flow that says Washington is winning this won in the end. There’s 3:57 on the clock.
STILL STRUGGLING: McCann-Smith got a pass inside to Argens for a layin just before the shot clock expired, epitomizing the struggles UW is having. Looks aren’t coming easy on offense. Defense may get a turnover, but the Matadors stop the score and CSUN is shooting 58.3 percent. It adds up to a 31-16 deficit for UW. Sharpe leads the visitors with eight.
LINEUP CHANGE: For a moment, McGuff at Wetmore at the point with transfer Kellie McCann-Smith. He quickly switched back to Davis running the point. Freshman F Aminah WIlliams is in with Heard and senior Mackenzie Argens inside. That lineup forced a five-second violation, but Davis missed a jumper on the other end. UW is down 17-6 with 12:59 remaining in the half.
COLD START: The Huskies are shooting 20 percent from the field, making two of 10 FGs. The offense looks stagnant and despite UW scoring both buckets off put-backs, they’ve left plenty more out there. Now, after a turnover, Washington is down 17-4 with 14:23 on the clock. McGuff was forced to call another timeout to get his team focused.
NO BOARDS: Perhaps McGuff should stop mentioning what he’d like his team to improve. Wednesday it was defense and UW responded by leaving its backdoor open to get down to Seattle U. early. Saturday, McGuff mentions rebounds and UW can’t get a hand on those, giving up chances to overcome a 9-2 deficit with 16:28 on the clock.
SCOREBOARD: San Diego is up 68-59 with about four minutes left in the game against Seattle University at KeyArena. There’s a live blog for that game here.
ORANGE RIBBONS: The UW and CSUN coaching staffs pinned orange ribbons to their suit lapels in honor of Oklahoma State coaches Kurt Budke and Miranda Serna, who died in a plane crash on Thursday. Huskies coach Kevin McGuff and assistant Mike Neighbors were close with Budke. Washington also held a moment of silence, showing a picture of Budke and Serna on the big screen.
Washington PG Jazmine Davis took time during pregame warm-ups to chuckle at a clip of her on the big screen, displaying the words “Jazz has moves” beneath the picture. It’s early in the freshman’s career, but she’s the kind of player who may have folks seriously debating what to watch — UW football or women’s hoops.
OK, maybe not that many people. But it could happen. For now, the Huskies are battling the televised football game from Corvallis, where Oregon State is up 14-7 in the second quarter. Hoops tips-off at 2 p.m. against Cal State Northridge at Hec Ed.
CSU-N (2-0) is in rebuilding form, winning four games last season. Second-year coach Jason Flowers has more talent this season, but the Matadors are picked to place seventh in the Big West. CSU-N lost to Oregon State 83-63 on Thursday.
UW remains focused on itself, playing its final home matchup before a two-game trip in California. The Huskies defeated the Matadors 73-55 in the teams’ first meeting in 2010. Improved defense and better ball-handling are goals Saturday afternoon after UW (1-1) split its opening two games of the season, showing glimpses of positives in both.
Let’s see if the Huskies make moves, getting you started with your opening lineups:
MATADORS
F Kaitlyn Petersen
F Violet Alama
C Jasmine Erving
G Janae Sharpe
G Ashlee Guay
HUSKIES
F Charmaine Barlow
F Jeneva Anderson
C Regina Rogers
G Jazmine Davis
G Mercedes Wetmore
Tonight’s officials are Charles Gonzalez, Wanda Szeremeta, and Karen Lasuik.

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