Dec. 15, 2012
SEATTLE -- Washington (6-2) followed a familiar script, falling behind big and rallying in the second half, but Saturday it could not quite complete the comeback, losing to UC Santa Barbara (4-5), 54-46. The Dawgs rallied from 17 down get within one, but got no closer.
"It was disappointing," said head coach Kevin McGuff. "I thought mentally we didn't come out the way we needed to and give credit to Santa Barbara because they played harder than us for most of the game."
Washington struggled with its shooting all game, but particularly early on, missing its first eight shots and falling behind 8-0. UC Santa Barbara built a big lead by shooting 40 percent in the half and owning a 26-17 edge on the glass.
The Dawgs shot 18.8 percent in the half and trailed 25-8 with 4:14 left in the first half. From there, Washington finally got its offense going, finishing the half on a 9-2 run to get within 10 at the break. Jazmine Davis led the Dawgs with nine in the first half, but UW made just six field goals, including just 2-12 from 3-point range.
The momentum that went into the half did not carry over as Washington again struggled offensively, failing to score for the first 4:03 of second half. Finally, at the 15:57 mark, Kristi Kingma earned a hustle steal in the backcourt and knocked down a three and momentum seemed to tilt towards the Huskies.
Over the next three minutes, Washington went on a 10-0 run and pulled to within three, trailing just 30-27. Davis began to get her offense going, getting to the basket, scoring from the foul line and knocking down a three.
Washington traded baskets until a Talia Walton three got UW to within one, 34-33, but Washington would get no closer. Santa Barbara went on a 9-0 run of its own and pushed the lead back to double digits.
"I thought we had the game where we wanted it, but then we had some mental breakdowns and missed shots that we need to finish," said McGuff. "Santa Barbara kept playing even though their lead got whittled down and to their credit played hard and wanted to win more than we did."
The Huskies struggled to score down the stretch and UCSB closed the game out with free throw, winning by eight as Walton made a three in the final seconds to make the score look closer than it was.
The story for the Huskies was the shooting as UW finished 13-61 from the floor for just 21.3 percent. Washington turned it over just eight times and forced 17 turnovers at the other end, but was unable to capitalize.
Davis finished with 20 points to lead the Huskies, but shot just 6-20 from the floor. Aminah Williams grabbed 10 rebounds to give her six-straight games in double figures. Overall, UCSB outrebounded the Dawgs, 47-36.
Washington will have a chance for redemption less than 24 hours later as it hosts Idaho back at Alaska Airlines Arena at 1 p.m. McGuff intentionally scheduled a back-to-back to give the Huskies a look at what postseason tournament play will be like.