HUSKIES WIN: The best part of Friday for Kristi Kingma were the final four minutes where she cheered for reserves Heather Corrral, Jeneva Anderson, and Deb Meeks in a 97-71 win at Oregon. What will be talked about is Kingma’s record 11 three-pointers for a career-high 35 points. Kingma’s signature three-pointers set a Pac-12 record, the last mark being nine by Oregon G Taylor Lilley in 2010 and Stanford F Lindsey Yamasaki in 2001. Oregon State G Talisa Rhea had the overall Pac-12 record of 10 in 2008. Kingma is UW’s second all-time career three-point shooter (215) behind G Loree Payne (245). Her 11 was one from tying the NCAA record of 12 set by Brittany Rayburn (Purdue) and Cornelia Gayden (Louisiana State). Rayburn achieved hers in 2012 while Gayden established the mark during the 1994-95 season. “I did think we were capable of a night like this with the shooters that we have,” UW coach Kevin McGuff said. “We’ve had some really good nights. Certainly this one was extraordinary.” Washington was 18-of-41 from three-point range overall, also setting a Pac-12 record for threes made. The team had 25 assists on 35 made field goals, proving there was plenty of offensive action in the game. Corral had 16 points, making four three-pointers. F Aminah Williams had another double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds while Talia Walton and Jazmine Davis also totaled 12 points apiece. Davis added nine assists. “It’s kind of hard to explain,” Kingma said of her shooting rhythm. “You feel you could just chuck it up there and it would go in. When that happens, it’s pretty cool because you don’t get in that zone pretty often.” Naturally Oregon G Ariel Thomas was irked at her team’s failure to close out and force Kingma to drive the ball or do anything but attempt her signature shot. “We just continued to let her sit there and shoot threes,” Thomas said. To nit-pick, the Huskies weren’t as impressive defensively. The Ducks shot conference season-high 43.1 percent from the field, despite not threatening the Huskies’ lead. McGuff was looking to the future when he critiqued the defensive effort, however. UW (18-6, 10-3 Pac-12) plays at Oregon State on Monday. The Beavers (9-16, 3-10) are trying to stop a seven-game losing streak that began with an overtime loss at Hec Ed in January. Kingma made a school record 15-of-15 FTs to seal that win. “Those threes look great when they’re going in and fortunately enough went in tonight,” McGuff said. “I would say that we’re going to have to be much better defensively in our upcoming games if we want to continue to have success.” Walton tweaked her surgically repaired knee and will use the two-day break in between the road games to rehab. McGuff was able to give his starters rest because of the once 28-point lead. Wetmore still kept her assists-to-turnover ratio rolling with six assists on Friday and just one miscue.
SCOREBOARD: No. 6 Cal killed No. 15 UCLA 79-51 on Friday. Golden Bears F Gennifer Brandon had 16 points and eight assists. No. 21 Colorado beat Arizona 55-42 while Utah defeated Arizona State 54-46. Washington State is up 10 on Oregon State. No. 4 Stanford is just getting into its match at USC, which you can watch on Pac-12 Networks now. I’m out to write the newspaper version of this blowout. UW is up 74-47 after a three-pointer by Corral.
HUSTLING: Anderson is getting a good run due to the massive lead and solid play. She blocked her first shot of the game and helped force a Ducks’ turnovers. Kingma popped another three-pointer and UW is up 64-39 with 13:57 on the clock. Kingma has 26 points. her career-high is 30 points set against Kent State in 2010. She’s already surpassed her career-high in three-pointers made in a game. Her prevvious high was six, the last being against Oregon in 2011. Kingma is 8-of-13 from three-point range Friday.
WE’RE BACK: Everybody’s back for Washington, including me. The hottest spot in the building is The Pit, where fans are milling around drinking beer and eating stadium snacks. Don’t blame them, UO is down 61-39 with 15:23 remaining in the game. Walton banged knees in the scramble, that’s why she only played 12 minutes in the opening half. Wetmore is believed to have sat because of the Ducks’ zone defense. UW made Oregon pay, going 6-of-10 from three-point range with more shooters on the court.
WETMORE OUT?: Wetmore only played 11 minutes in the opening half. Not sure why but Kingma masked the absence with more three-pointers. She’s 5-of-8 from the range so far and UW has closed the half up 47-30. Kingma has 17 points overall and Davis has 11 with five assists and two steals. When talking about bench production, Corral and senior G Jeneva Anderson are checking in. In 12 minutes, Corral is 3-of-5 from the field for eight points, two boards, one block and one steal in the half. Anderson played nine minutes, nailing a nice jumper. UO is shooting 35.5 percent from the field and has allowed 15 second-chance points with six points off its eight turnovers. Brenner leads with 10 points and six boards. The halftime show is a raffle and honor of Oregon’s basketball alumni. Cathrine Kraayeveld (Lake Washington HS) is play in South Korea, so she’s not here. Now an Atlanta Dream F, Kraayeveld is averaging 14.9 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.6 assists overseas.
RUNNIN’ GAME: Kingma let loose her standard game-day ponytail and all you see is blonde hair as she grabs defensive rebounds and races down court for a pull-up jumper and a bounce pass to Corral for a layin. Kingma’s hustle helped the Huskies stretch its lead to 36-23. She has 11 points. Walton is walking on the sideline, so she could check back in soon. There’s 2:38 on the clock.
WALTON HURT?: In a loose ball scramble, Corral came up with the steal and Walton remained on the court with an apparent right ankle injury. She was escorted off the court and is being evaluated on the bench. UW is up 32-22 with 5:35 left in the half. Walton was 4-of-12 for nine points and six rebounds.
SO PRETTY: Wetmore had another fly assist with 7:58 left in the first half. She appeared trapped inside, but somehow spotted Walton for a pass to score. Washington is up 28-22. With Brenner (10 points) and Delgado (eight points) finding some offensive success, the lead doesn’t mean much right now.
THREE MORE: Corral and Kingma nailed more three-pointers and the Huskies are on a brisk 10-3 run to build a 23-13 lead.
THE ANCHOR: Brenner holds it down inside the paint for the Ducks. She’s 3-of-5 to start. Davis isn’t showing any hesitation in taking it inside to help the Huskies lead 15-10. Freshman G Heather Corral is in and has two rebounds early, including one to stop Brenner from getting a putback.
THREE’S COMPANY: UW’s three-point shooting is back. Kingma hit one as the first basket of the game with 19:44 on the clock. Walton and Davis soon followed. Delgado also nailed a three-pointer, so it’s 9-7 with 16:32 remaining in the opening half.
Call this the prelude to the finale of the season. Washington (17-6, 9-3) faces the bottom of the Pac-12 in Oregon (3-21, 1-11) on Friday and Oregon State (9-15, 3-9) on Monday before it heads into the roughest stretch of its season.
After the Oregon trip, three of Washington’s final four games are against three ranked teams. Whatever kinks the Huskies need to work out, it needs to be settled now so UW peaks at the right time for matchups against No. 23 Colorado, No. 4 Stanford and No. 6 California.
UW does appear primed for the regular-season finish. It has G Mercedes Wetmore with a 4.1 assist-to-turnover ratio. F Talia Walton averaged 15.5 points and seven rebounds against the Southern California schools in grabbing her third conference Freshman of the Week honor. Star PG Jazmine Davis is averaging 19.9 points, which ranks 17th in NCAA Division I. F Aminah Williams has returned to being a force on the boards (10.9 average), plus displaying a good three-point shot lately. And redshirt senior Kristi Kingma is keeping it all together. She leads the conference in three-pointers (65) and minutes played (38.1)
So what needs work? The Huskies could always use more production from its bench. The offense was also off kilter against No. 15 UCLA and USC, totaling 33.3 percent shooting from the field. The Huskies still beat the Trojans by three and lost to the Bruins by four, using strong defense.
Getting the offensive to flow, again, like the defense would be a good kink to fix during this stretch. Let’s get it going with your starting lineups.
F Kristi Kingma
F Aminah Williams
C Talia Walton
G Jazmine Davis
G Mercedes Wetmore
F Danielle Love
F Jillian Alleyne
C Liz Brenner
G Ariel Thomas
G Jordan Loera
Tonight’s officials are Kyle Bacon, Bart Baldwin, and Mary Whatford.