HUSKIES WIN: Davis had her right ankle heavily encased in ice when she entered the press room after a 70-68 win. She hoped there wouldn’t be practice on Saturday so she could get some time to heal the serious injury. But moments earlier, she drove through Saint Mary’s triple-team to score the game-winning basket with six seconds left in the game. Davis scored 14 of her final 25 points in the second half. “I knew I was going to play. I was determined,” she said after suffering the injury. “It was a lot of pain. I’ve never rolled my ankle like that before. But it’s all just mind over matter. It was my knowing that the team needs me and kind of getting past all of that.” The Gaels used a 15-4 run to tie the game at 68 points apiece. McGuff called a timeout with 20 seconds left in the game to design a play, but basically told Davis to create. She had three assists in the game, so no one really expected her to pass anyway. McGuff mentioned all of the errors his team had in the game during the press conference, only did say when the players had energy, they did a lot of positives. The Gaels are a tough team. They were 22-11 last season, possess size and have four upperclassmen in their starting lineup. But Nared’s team-leading 25 points and 17 rebounds weren’t enough. “I thought early on we really settled for quick, bad shots and not until at the end of the first half and the second did we have the patience to execute and look further into the offense to get a good shot,” McGuff said. “They (Saint Mary’s) are good, got to give them credit, and if you are going to look for a quick shot, it is probably not going to happen. And we tempt to do that. Once we settled, and started to get the idea of execution, we got a lot better shots.” Next up for Washington (1-0) is Seattle University on Wednesday at KeyArena. The Redhawks (0-1) lost 71-70 to Pacific at home on Friday.
BREAK TIME: I’m out to write the newspaper version. UW is up 56-49 with 10:44 remaining in the game. Nothing is certain, but the Huskies are gaining confidence in the system. Washington lost its first season-opener under MucGuff 69-68 to UC Davis last year.
ANOTHER RUN: Washington is moving the ball and eliminating the second-chance shots for Saint Mary’s to piece together another 9-0 run that has the crowd really into the game. The Huskies are outrebounding the Gaels 12-2 so far in the second half. UW leads 54-39.
IMPROVEMENT: Washington is shooting 55.6 percent in the second half and keeping Saint Mary’s at 28.3 percent, although the Gaels are having an easy time breaking UW’s zone defense.
TIE GAME: Three-pointers by Davis and Walton tied the game at 37 points apiece early in the second half. Mauldin made a bucket under the hoop to break it. But Walton (jumper) and Kingma (three-pointer) and Davis (three-pointer) connected again to grab the first lead at 45-39. There’s 15:50 left in the game.
OUTNUMBERED:McGuff’s family nearly outnumbers his active players. His wife is pregnant with their sixth child. Add the fact that she’s a former player at Notre Dame and McGuff has more depth at home than at Alaska Airlines Arena. Thank you, I’ll be here all season.
HALFTIME: UW’s defense has done an adequate job of keep Nared from posting her normal numbers. She still nailed a stinger three-pointer with five seconds left in the half that stunted the positive vibes UW was beginning to build. The bucketed bumped the score to 35-31 headed into the break. Washington is shooting 29 percent from the field, but the Gaels weren’t ever shooting well — just getting multiple chances due to UW’s lack of defensive boards. Nared grabbed most of those, finishing the half with a double-double in 14 points and 10 rebounds. UW is getting outrebounded 34-18 overall. Davis is 4-for-10 from the field for a team-leading 11 points. It’s obvious what needs to improve for the Huskies to pull out a win. They need to grab the rebounds and stop giving up points on turnovers. Saint Mary’s scored nine points on second-chance opportunities and 12 off turnovers.
DAVIS BACK: Davis reentered the game after getting her ankle re-taped. She sank a short jumper and the deficit is 27-23.
MINI RUN: In a minute’s time the Huskies went on a 9-0 run with Davis screaming on one leg from the bench. Kingma hit another three-pointer and Williams picked off a pass for a fast-break layup. It’s 23-20 with 5:12 left. Washington is shooting 5-for-21 from the field.
DAVIS DOWN: Davis fell to the court inside the paint and needed to be helped to the bench by trainers. She was dragging her right foot behind her. There’s 7:31 remaining and the Huskies are down 23-11.
CHILLIN: Aside from the obnoxiously big screen and bench chairs, UW has made a few other changes in the second season. The game staff is playing old-school mellow hip-hop instrumentals during timeouts that make you want to dim the lights and celebrate the passing of Initiative-502. The team also entered from the tunnel for player introductions. It’s all lost on the crowd because there’s only about 1,000 fans in the arena.
MOMENTUM SHIFT: Kingma hit her first three of the season with 10:56 on the clock and although it took a few more misfired attempts, Davis drove inside for a layin to make the score 18-11. Gaels coach Paul Thomas called a timeout to discuss.
ICY?: Can you really call it icy if it’s non existent? UW is 0-for-10 from the field but 6-of-6 from the FT line. Gaels up 16-6 with 11:38 on the clock.
DANISH BOARDS: Denmark F Mathlide Gilling made her college debut with 14:06 remaining in the opening half and nearly grabbed more rebounds (two) in one minute of play than the team had in the previous six minutes. UW remains unable to capitalize on the little defensive play it is making with both Kingma and Davis missing open shots and Gaels posts Mauldin and Rosenthal doing work against who ever tries to score in the paint. The Huskies got on the board with two Davis FTs and Walton added two more to make the deficit 14-4.
BLOCKING DEBUT: Walton is making a strong defensive debut after missing last season due to chronic knee injuries. She blocked three Gaels shot-attempts, but that’s all of the defensive plays UW is making. The Huskies are getting outrebounded 12-2 and down 9-0 with 15:51 remaining in the first half.
Washington opens its second season under coach Kevin McGuff on Friday and already injuries are messing with the lineups. Freshman G Heather Corral is out with a right wrist injury suffered this week. Returnee Kellie McCann-Smith remains not with the team due to a personal issue while Katie Collier and Debra Meeks are out with knee injuries.
The players who are suited up are solid in sharpshooter Kristi Kingma, who’s returning from a torn ACL, and PG Jazmine Davis, the 2012 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year. McGuff is waiting for a post to stand out and for the team to play his style of defense.
Let’s get started with what the new style will look like post Regina Rogers, Mackenzie Argens and Mollie Williams. Here are your starting lineups:
F Morgan Hatten
F Danielle Mauldin
C Carli Rosenthal
G Mia Greco
G Jackie Nared
F Kristi Kingma
F Aminah Williams
C Talia Walton
G Jazmine Davis
G Mercedes Wetmore
Tonight’s officials are Brenda Pantoja, Penny Davis and In’Fini Robinson.