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UW Men's Basketball Team Visits New Mexico for Pair of Games
Release: 12/28/1999
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Dec. 28, 1999

Thurs., Dec. 30 - UW at New Mexico State, 6:00 p.m. PST (7:00 p.m. MST)

Pan American Center (13,071), Las Cruces, N.M.

Sun., Jan. 2 - UW at New Mexico, 1:00 p.m. PST (2:00 p.m. MST)

The Pit (18,018), Albuquerque, N.M.

The Washington Huskies (5-5) close out their non-conference schedule with a pair of games in the state of New Mexico. Washington visits Las Cruces for a Thursday, Dec. 30 tilt with New Mexico State (7-2). Tip-off is 6 p.m. Pacific Time (7 p.m. Mountain Time) at the Pan American Center. The Huskies defeated the Aggies 73-53 last season in Seattle during the only previous meeting between the two schools. Washington will be in Albuquerque over New Year's awaiting a Sunday, Jan. 2 meeting with New Mexico (6-6). Tip-off is 1 p.m. Pacific Time (2 p.m. MST) at The Pit, one of the nation's premier college basketball venues. The Lobos have won 81 percent of their games at the 18,018-seat arena since it opened in 1966. In their only previous visit to Albuquerque, the Huskies lost 54-53 on Dec. 3, 1983. Washington beat the then-11th-ranked Lobos 70-61 last season in Seattle. The Huskies begin Pac-10 play on Thursday, Jan. 6 at home against 21st-ranked UCLA.

Season to Date: Washington opened the season with a win for the sixth straight season, defeating Saint Mary's 73-60 in Moraga, Calif. The Huskies traveled to Anchorage for the Great Alaska Shootout where they defeated the host Seawolves 86-70 in the opener. UW lost three straight games, placing fifth in the Shootout after setbacks to Georgia Tech (82-65) and Xavier (81-65) before losing at UNC Wilmington (68-59). The Huskies stopped that three-game slide with a victory at Old Dominion (78-70). That was the third Husky road victory, matching their total last season when they had a 3-9 road record. After six straight road games, UW dropped its Dec. 13 home opener to No. 22 Gonzaga (76-66). The Huskies' four-game homestand included a win over Wichita State (61-47), a loss to No. 11 Oklahoma State (84-72) and a win over Boise State (72-57) in the last outing.

TV/Radio Coverage: Neither Washington game in New Mexico will be televised. All Husky men's basketball games are broadcast live on KOMO Radio (AM 1000) and its affiliates by play-by-play announcer Bob Rondeau. The radio broadcasts can be accessed via the internet at: http://www.audionet.com/schools/washington/

Season Preview: Bob Bender begins his seventh season at Washington, seeking to direct the Huskies to their third straight NCAA Tournament berth and fifth consecutive postseason appearance overall. Only once in school history have the Huskies appeared in three straight NCAA Tournaments (1984-86). UW lost 59-58 to Miami (Ohio) in the first round of last season's NCAA Tournament, ending a 17-12 season. The Huskies finished fourth in the 1999 Pacific-10 Conference standings with a 10-8 league ledger. In pursuit of an NCAA bid, Bender must find a way to fill the void left by the departure of a pair of 1,000-point scorers, 7-foot center Todd MacCulloch and Donald Watts. Three starters return, including the backcourt duo of senior guard Deon Luton, who owns every school 3-point scoring record, and sophomore guard Senque Carey, a member of the 1999 All-Pac-10 freshman team.

Non-Conference Concludes: The Huskies complete their 12-game non-conference schedule with two games in New Mexico. With a 5-5 record to date, Washington needs to win both games to secure their fifth consecutive winning non-conference record. The Huskies won seven non-conference regular-season games each of the last four seasons, going 7-3 last year after 7-2 records in the previous three seasons (1996, 1997, 1998). Washington was 4-5 in 1995.

The New Mexico State Series:

o The Huskies defeated New Mexico State 73-53 in Seattle last year on Dec. 19 in the only previous meeting.

o Both the Aggies and Washington participated in the 1999 NCAA Tournament. Both teams lost first-round Midwest Region games in New Orleans, La. UW lost 59-58 to Miami (Ohio) and New Mexico State lost 82-60 to Kentucky.

o The UW has a 143-58 all-time record against teams from the Big West Conference.

o Aggie Coach Lou Henson has a 1-2 record against Washington, the first two meetings occurring while he was at Illinois. His Illini squad defeated the Huskies 76-55 on Dec. 7, 1991 in Champaign and 81-68 on Dec. 30, 1977 at the Far West Classic in Portland, Ore.

o Washington's Bob Bender won his only game as a coach against New Mexico State and Lou Henson. Bender coached at Illinois State from 1989-1993 while Henson coached at Illinois but they never met head-to-head in that period.

The Last Meeting: UW 73, New Mexico State 53 (Dec. 19, 1998, Seattle) -- Todd MacCulloch grabbed 19 rebounds and tallied 23 points to share game-high scoring honors with teammate Deon Luton as Washington halted a three-game losing streak with a 73-53 victory over New Mexico State at Edmundson Pavilion. It was the first home game in 32 days for the Huskies who logged over 8,000 miles on a six-game road trip. Washington stretched a 29-26 halftime lead as MacCulloch scored eight points and Luton added five to fuel a 15-2 run. That early second-half surge gave UW a 44-30 advantage with 14:07 left in the game. MacCulloch hit 8-of-13 shots from the field while Luton shot 7-fot-11, including 4-of-7 accuracy from 3-point range. Eric Channing scored 17 points to lead the Aggies who also got 13 from Aaron Brodt.

Wonderful Walk-On: Senior forward Chris Walcott has worked his way from former walk-on into the starting lineup for the Huskies. He is the only player among the 50 full-time starters in the Pacific-10 Conference who joined his team as a walk-on. Walcott leads the team in field goal shooting (49%), ranks second in rebounds (5.9 rpg) and third in scoring (11.3 ppg). He poured in a career-high 22 points at Alaska-Anchorage. As a senior as Sammamish High School he earned all-state honors and scored 29 points during his team's loss in the 1995 Washington state championship game. His only scholarship offers came from small division I schools, including New Hampshire, and division II schools like Seattle Pacific. Husky coach Bob Bender convinced him to walk-on at Washington and he was granted a scholarship following his first season. "When you evaluate a player's career, any player, you like to look back and see that they made progress and improved every year," Bender explains. "Chris has done exactly that. He started as a walk-on, became a role player, was a significant contributor last year and now he is one of the key players on the team."

Notable: The Huskies have won three road games, matching their total last season when they had a 3-9 road record ... Washington has a 5-0 record when outshooting opponents from the field and is 0-5 when being outshot ... Five teams have staged runs of 11 unanswered points against UW this season (Saint Mary's, Georgia Tech, UNC Wilmington, Gonzaga and Oklahoma State) ... The UW has a 36-14 all-time record during games in which senior guard Deon Luton hits multiple 3-pointers ... Oklahoma State shot 60 percent (30-50) on Dec. 21, the only team to reach the 50-percent plateau this season against the Huskies ... Junior forward Will Perkins registered double-figure rebounds in four of 10 games this season, averaging 7.8 caroms per game ... Senque Carey distributed 10 assists at Alaska Anchorage, the 28th double-digit assist performance in Husky history. It was only the seventh double-digit assist effort by a UW player during the 1990s.

Home Away From Home: The Huskies will play all of their home games in KeyArena at Seattle Center this season while Hec Edmundson Pavilion is being renovated. The Huskies won 746 games in The Pavilion since it opened on Dec. 27, 1927, more than any other school in its current arena. Washington tallied a 49-9 record on its home court the past four seasons. The UW has a 5-2 record in home games contested away from Edmundson Pavilion since that 1927 season, including a 2-2 mark at KeyArena this year. The Huskies upset 11th-ranked New Mexico 70-61 on Dec. 24 last season in their only game at KeyArena. Washington also played two games in the Kingdome, beating Notre Dame 63-61 in double overtime on Jan. 9, 1984 and Old Dominion 71-61 on Dec. 22, 1995. Washington's on-campus venue, Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion, is scheduled to re-open next season with a seating capacity of 10,000.

Frequent Flyers: The Huskies have accumulated thousands of air miles the last few seasons and this year was no different. Washington traveled nearly 10,000 air miles during a two-week span from Nov. 21 to Dec. 5. The Huskies flew from Seattle to Moraga, Calif. (782 miles), from Moraga to Anchorage, Ak. (2,227) and from Alaska back to Seattle (1,445). After two days at home, the Huskies boarded a plane for Wilmington, N.C. (2,460) where they took a bus to Norfolk, Va. and flew back to Seattle (2,585). In 1998, Washington traveled to South Alabama for a single game. Later that year the Huskies criss-crossed the country twice during the 1998 NCAA Tournament. UW flew from Seattle to Washington, D.C. for the first two rounds, returned to Seattle for one day and flew to Greensboro, N.C. for the Sweet 16. In 1999, the UW amassed over 8,000 miles during a 10-day stretch, traveling from Seattle to Hawai'i to Chicago and back to Seattle.

Last UW Game - Washington 72, Boise State 57 (Dec. 23, 1999, Seattle): Deon Luton scored a season-high 30 points, including six straight that gave Washington the lead for good en route to a 72-57 victory over Boise State in its final non-conference home game at KeyArena. The Huskies (5-5) avenged a 69-61 loss in Boise last season that was their only loss to BSU in nine career meetings. The Broncos (5-3) erased a 29-24 halftime deficit, tying the game at 38-38 on a 3-pointer by Clint Hordemann with 10:37 left in the game. Luton responded with a 3-pointer and three consecutive free throws after being fouled on a trey try. Luton shot 11-of-18 from the field, including 4-for-5 accuracy on 3-pointers. He registered the second 30-point game of his career, his first since a 31-point outing at USC on Jan. 29, 1998. Senque Carey added 18 points for Washington. Abe Jackson scored 20 points to lead the Broncos who also got 12 from Hordemann. Jackson hit 4-of-6 shots from 3-point range, helping BSU to a 60-percent (6-10) performance on treys. The Huskies answered with 50-percent 3-point shooting (4-8).

Century Club: Last year Deon Luton became the 27th player in Washington history to reach the 1,000-point career scoring plateau. He currently has 1,203 points to rank 17th among UW career scorers. He needs 92 points to surpass Andra Griffin (1978-81) and move into the No. 16 position.

Three-Peat?: Three starters return for Washington, seniors Deon Luton and Chris Walcott along with sophomore point guard Senque Carey. That trio looks to lead the Huskies to their third consecutive NCAA Tournament trip. Only once (1984-86) has Washington participated in three straight NCAA Tournaments. Luton, who owns every school 3-point scoring record, ranked second on the team in 1999 with a 14.3-point scoring average. Carey was a 1999 All-Pac-10 Freshman Team selection after averaging 8.7 points and 3.2 assists despite playing a reserve role during the first 11 games. One area of concern is rebounding as Carey is the team's leading returning board man with 3.1 caroms per game. Walcott started 12 games last year at forward, a position also manned by Thalo Green and Greg Clark, who started 11 and eight games, respectively.

Carey the Catalyst: Sophomore point guard Senque Carey is a versatile player who is clearly the catalyst of the Husky offense. He set a school record with a perfect 7-for-7 performance from 3-point range at Old Dominion. He broke the single-game 3-point percentage mark and tied Deon Luton's single-game trey standard of seven. Against Alaska Anchorage he put his offense aside (four points) and got his teammates involved by distributing 10 assists against only one turnover. That was his first double-digit assist effort and the 28th in Husky history. Carey thrived under difficult circumstances last season, culminating in his selection to the 1999 All-Pac-10 Freshmen Team. He was thrust into the starting point guard role for the final 17 games due to the season-ending foot injury to Dan Dickau. Carey responded with double-figure points in 11 of those games, including a season-high 19-point total at Arizona (Jan. 9) that he matched against USC (Jan. 28). He averaged 11.2 points during Pac-10 play, including 12.1 as a starter. Carey was a catalyst for a vastly improved offense that averaged eight more points a game with him at the helm. Carey led the Huskies in scoring three times and was the team's top assister on 11 occasions in 1999. His 94 assists placed him second among all-time UW freshman players, trailing only the 103-assist total of Eldridge Recasner (1987). Carey had a double-double at Oregon State (Feb. 11) with 18 points and 10 rebounds.

Returning Talent: Three starters and 10 lettermen from last year's team return. The leader is senior guard Deon Luton, Washington's all-time record holder in every 3-point scoring category, including marks for career (158), season (75 in 1998) and single-game (seven at USC on Jan. 29, 1998) treys. All-Pac-10 Freshman Team member Senque Carey joins Luton to form one of the Pac-10's finest backcourt tandems. Carey was thrust into the starting point guard spot, in place of an injured Dan Dickau, midway through last season and registered double-figure points in 11 of the next 13 games. Eight-game starter Greg Clark, a junior forward, returns in his role as Washington's defensive stopper. Senior Chris Walcott, a 6-9 forward, and 6-7 junior forward Thalo Green, provide leadership for an otherwise inexperienced frontcourt. Walcott started 12 games in 1999 and is the Huskies' top returning field goal shooting (.518) and steals leader (28). Green started 11 games last season, providing an uncanny knack for interior passing and scoring around the basket. Junior guard Michael Johnson is slated to fill the third guard role vacated by the graduation of Donald Watts. Johnson seeks to display at the collegiate level the scoring skills he showed while amassing a state prep Class AA record 2,271 points at Seattle's Ballard High School. Long-distance shooting specialist Bryan Brown, a junior, has 3-point range reminiscent of his father, "Downtown" Fred Brown. Sophomore Grant Leep will battle for increased playing time with a solid inside game and range out to the 3-point line. Sophomore center Marlon Shelton teams with newcomer David Dixon to fill the post position vacated by NBA draftee Todd MacCulloch. Guard Andrew Moritz, a three-year walk-on, was granted a scholarship for his senior season. Walk-ons Jon DeWolfe and Travis Duty provide depth for the guard corps.

Newcomers: The Washington roster is bolstered by the addition of three scholarship recruits and one walk-on. The lone scholarship freshman is Ben Coffee who joins sophomore David Dixon and junior Will Perkins in the 1999 recruiting class. All three are capable rebounders and should help a group of returners that looks to fill the void left by the departure of Todd MacCulloch whose 11.9 rebounds per game ranked second in the nation. Perkins, a 6-8 forward, comes to Washington from Iowa Western JC where he was selected by Blue Ribbon Yearbook as an honorable mention All-American selection. He averaged 21.8 points and 10.8 rebounds during his sophomore season. The 6-11 Dixon is the likely candidate to fill the starting center spot. Also named as an honorable mention junior college All-American by Blue Ribbon Yearbook, Dixon averaged 10 points and nine rebounds in 1999 for a fine Tyler (Texas) Junior College program that has produced NBA standouts Robert Pack, Sam Mack and David Benoit. Coffee is a product of Benson Tech High School in Portland, Ore. who is highly regarded for his athleticism and rebounding abilities. He was a second-team selection in the Fab 15 published by the Orange County Register, receiving the 28th most votes among West Coast prep players. Coffee averaged 13.9 points per game for the Techmen who won the 1999 Portland Interscholastic league title and placed third in the Oregon state tournament. The fourth newcomer is invited walk-on Jon DeWolfe, a 6-3 guard from Walla Walla, Wash. who completed his prep career last spring at Walla Walla High School.

Departures: Only three players from last year's team will not return but they leave big shoes to fill. The biggest loss is 7-0 center Todd MacCulloch, a three-time national field goal percentage leader and two-time All-Pac-10 member who was drafted by Philadelphia 76ers in the second round. The Huskies lose his team-leading 18.7 points, 11.9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. The backcourt must absorb the loss of two 1999 opening day starters in Donald Watts and Dan Dickau. Washington played the second half of last season without Dickau who suffered a season ending heel injury and has since transferred to Gonzaga. Watts averaged 13.1 points per game, including a career-high 28-points in the NCAA first round match-up with Miami (Ohio).

Back in the Lineup: Senior guard Deon Luton had a streak of 64 straight starts snapped as he was replaced in the starting lineup at Old Dominion (Dec. 4) by Greg Clark. The benching followed an 0-for-9 shooting performance at UNC Wilmington (Dec. 2). Luton responded with 16 points, on 6-of-10 shooting, in his reserve role at Old Dominion. He returned to the starting lineup for the last four games during which Luton averaged 22.8 points on 50-percent shooting (31-62), including 57-percent (13-23) accuracy from 3-point range.

Sonics & Sons: Two former Seattle SuperSonics have sons on the 1999-2000 Washington basketball roster. The list of former NBA players (and sons) includes, Fred Brown (Bryan) and Lonnie Shelton (Marlon). A graduate of Iowa, Fred Brown is the Sonics' all-time leading scorer with 14,018 points. Brown played his entire 13-year NBA career in Seattle and was a 1976 all-star. Lonnie Shelton was a 1975 All-Pac-8 Conference selection at Oregon State. He played 15 NBA seasons and was a 1982 all-star. Shelton played from 1979-83 in Seattle. Brown and Shelton were members of Seattle's 1979 NBA Championship squad. Two other former sons of Sonics were on the team last year, Donald Watts (father Slick) was a four-year letterman and walk-on Michael Westphal (father Paul) transferred after his freshman year to Bellevue (Wash.) Community College.

The New Mexico Series:

o Washington has a 2-1 all-time record against New Mexico, including a 70-61 upset of the then-11th-ranked Lobos on Dec. 24, 1998 at KeyArena. The Huskies won 77-64 in Seattle on Dec. 5, 1987 and lost 54-53 on Dec. 3, 1983 in their only previous visit to Albuquerque.

o The UW has a 24-15 all-time record against members of the Mountain West Conference.

o First-year Lobo head coach Fran Fraschilla has never coached against Washington.

o Washington Coach Bob Bender won his only meeting with New Mexico, last year in Seattle.

The Last Meeting: UW 70, #11New Mexico 61 (Dec. 24, 1998, Seattle) -- Deon Luton scored 12 of his 22 points inside the final seven minutes as Washington dealt 11th-ranked New Mexico its first loss of the season, a 70-61 decision at KeyArena. Luton failed to convert a 3-pointer in 11 attempts and missed 14 of his first 16 shots. He recovered to make his final five shots and added two free throws, accounting for 12 straight Husky points. New Mexico (8-1) rallied from a 39-29 halftime deficit as back-to-back 3-pointers by John Robinson gave the Lobos a 53-52 edge with 9:36 left in the game. Todd MacCulloch began a 10-point Washington (6-3) run with consecutive baskets that preceded Luton's 12-point streak. MacCulloch was 9-of-9 from the field, finishing with 21 points and 14 rebounds. Kenny Thomas scored 26 points to lead the Lobos who also got 12 apiece from Robinson and Greg Davis. New Mexico forward Lamont Long, who entered the game ranked seventh nationally with a 24.1-point average, was held scoreless. In his first collegiate start Greg Clark guarded Long and contributed nine points, seven rebounds, four assists and three steals. The Lobos, one of seven undefeated teams in the nation entering the game, were held more than 30 points below their scoring average of 92.4 points per game.

No Nail-Biters: The overall scoring average in Husky games this season (UW 69.7 - opponents 69.5) is misleading as no Washington game has been decided by fewer than eight points. An eight-point margin in Washington's 78-70 win at Old Dominion marked the closest game of the season for the Huskies whose losses have all come by nine-or-more points. Washington's average margin of victory is 13.2 points while UW foes are winning by an average of 12.8 points.

Huskies vs. Ranked Foes: Washington has a 59-165 record in all-time meetings with ranked opponents, including a 15-50 mark during the 1990s. The Huskies both meetings with ranked opponents this season, both in Seattle. Washington lost 76-66 to 22nd-ranked Gonzaga (Dec. 13) and 84-72 to No. 11 Oklahoma State (Dec. 21). The last Husky victory over a ranked opponent was a 90-84 decision over No. 10 Arizona on Feb. 4, 1999 at Edmundson Pavilion. Five teams on the UW schedule are ranked among the current Associated Press top-25 poll, including Stanford (#2), Arizona (#5), Oklahoma State (#14), UCLA (#18) and Gonzaga (#22).

The UCLA Series:

o UCLA owns a 78-27 series lead and won 22 of the last 26 meetings with Washington.

o Washington won two of the last three meetings, including a 93-83 victory over the then 11th-ranked Bruins on Jan. 31 during the last meeting in Seattle. The UW posted a 95-94 decision on March 1, 1998 in Seattle that win was the first for Coach Bob Bender against the Bruins, stopping a 10-game UW losing streak against UCLA. The Bruins won 79-62 last year in Los Angeles during the most recent matchup.

o The Bruins have a 28-22 series advantage during games played in Seattle despite losing in their last two visits.

o UCLA won 11 of the last 13 meetings, averaging 84.7 points on 52.9-percent shooting (426-805) during that span. The Bruins reached the 50-percent plateau in 10 of the last 13 games and twice shot better than 62 %.

o Fourth-year UCLA Coach Steve Lavin has a 4-2 record against Washington.

o In his seventh season at Washington, Bob Bender has a 2-10 coaching record against UCLA.

The Last Meeting: #15 UCLA 79, UW 62 (Feb. 27, 1999, Los Angeles) -- Earl Watson led five double-figure scorers with 18 points and JaRon Rush added 12 points and 15 rebounds for 15th-ranked UCLA in a 79-62 win over Washington at Pauley Pavilion. The Bruins (21-7, 11-5) led the entire game, extending a 12-11 edge with a nine-point run. The Huskies (16-11, 9-8) were held scoreless for nearly four minutes, enabling UCLA to take a 21-11 lead with eight minutes left until halftime. Watson scored 11 first-half points and Rush added nine en route to a 36-25 halftime margin. The lead grew to as many as 21 points before Washingon rallied to within 59-51 on a 3-pointer by Bryan Brown with 5:46 left in the game. UCLA scored seven straight to repel the rally. Donald Watts scored 14 points to lead the Huskies who also got 10 each from Todd MacCulloch and Deon Luton. MacCulloch, who attempted only five shots and made four, grabbed 13 rebounds. Baron Davis tallied 14 points for the Bruins while Jerome Moiso had 11 and Travis Reed 10. The Bruins converted a season-high 29 Washington turnovers into 25 points. The Huskies shot 40 percent (21-53), but limited UCLA to 39-percent shooting (29-74), including 1-of-13 on treys.

The Last Meeting in Seattle: UW 93, #11 UCLA 83 (Jan. 31, 1999, Seattle) -- Todd MacCulloch posted a 26-point, 21-rebound performance and Deon Luton added 21 points in Washington's 93-83 upset of 11-ranked UCLA at Edmundson Pavilion. MacCulloch recorded the third 20-20 game of his career for Washington (12-7, 5-4) which won consecutive games against the Bruins (15-5, 6-3) for the first time since 1987. Baron Davis tallied 16 of his 20 points in the first half, helping UCLA to a 44-36 halftime advantage. The Bruins led 59-53 with 13:34 left to play before an 11-point run over the next three minutes put Washington ahead 64-59. With the Huskies ahead 77-70, Luton had a fastbreak with 4:34 remaining that drew the fifth foul on Davis who then received a technical foul. Bruin Coach Steve Lavin stormed the floor and was whistled for a pair of technicals, resulting in his ejection and eight straight free throws by Luton. He hit five of them to give the Huskies an 82-70 cushion. UCLA drew within 88-83 on a Jerome Moiso jumper at 0:49, but those were his team's final points. The Bruins forced 23 turnovers with 13 steals, including five from Davis. Washington shot 55 percent (30-55) and had a 43-28 rebound advantage. Earl Watson scored 24 points to lead UCLA which also got 20 from Moiso.

Husky Talk: Tune in to KOMO (1000 AM) every Monday night at 6 p.m. for "Husky Talk," a half-hour call-in and interview show featuring head coach Bob Bender and KOMO Radio's Bob Rondeau.

Husky Tickets: All Washington men's basketball games during the 1999-2000 season will be played at Seattle Center's KeyArena. Good seats are available for Washington home games on a season and individual game basis. All seating for Husky basketball games at KeyArena is reserved. Reserved seating for all regular-season games are $14 and $6. Seating is subject to availability within the reserved areas. The first 500 UW students are allowed in free. Visit the Husky Ticket Office, located in the Graves Building, or call at (206) 543-2200 for information.

Chat With Bob Bender: The Husky Fever web site features Coach Bob Bender for a live chat on two occasions this season. The final live chat session with Bender is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 8 from 7 to 8 p.m. To participate in these sessions, see the Husky Fever web site at: www.huskyfever.com

Washington Men's Basketball
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