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No. 22 Bears Hang On To Beat Huskies
Release: 02/15/2003
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By GREG BEACHAM
AP Sports Writer

BERKELEY, Calif. - Freshman Richard Midgley scored 15 points and hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1:39 left as 22nd-ranked California survived nine lead changes in the second half to beat Washington 58-53 on Saturday.

Joe Shipp had 16 points and seven rebounds, and Amit Tamir made a jumper in the lane with 51 seconds left as Cal (18-4, 11-2 Pac-10) stayed one game behind top-ranked Arizona in the conference race with its 17th straight home victory.

Not many of the wins in the two-year streak were tougher than this one, which didn't feel safe until Midgley corralled a loose ball off Shipp's missed free throw with 5.8 seconds left. Tamir scored 11 points as Cal won its fourth straight game.

Nate Robinson and Curtis Allen scored 12 points apiece for the Huskies (8-14, 3-10), who lost their fourth straight. Washington trailed 55-53 when Will Conroy dribbled the ball out of bounds near the Huskies' bench with 14 seconds left.

Cal ended the game on an 8-1 run. Two nights earlier, the Bears scored the final nine points in a tough victory over Washington State.

Washington has lost all six of its conference road games. Doug Wrenn, the Huskies' leading scorer, was held to six points on just seven shots in 30 minutes.

The Bears won despite a subpar game from one of their top three scorers. Brian Wethers had just seven points, and he failed to join Shipp and Tamir in double figures for the first time in 19 games.

Instead, Midgley raised his play, capping an outstanding game with two free throws in the final seconds. His emergence as a starter has been a boost to Cal's fortunes during the Pac-10 season.

The Huskies were more athletic than Cal, breaking downcourt for layups and hustling for every loose ball. But the Golden Bears made the most of their open shots in the second half, and Washington couldn't get a field goal in the final 2:01.

The Bears survived, but they never took charge of an exciting game. Washington led for most of the first half, but Cal tied it on Tamir's layup 12 seconds before halftime.

The Huskies reclaimed the lead on Conroy's 3-pointer early in the second half, but Cal held them without a field goal for nearly six minutes during a 9-1 run. Washington then reeled off nine straight points, with Wrenn getting two breakaway dunks.

Neither team led by more than three points during the final seven minutes until Midgley's clinching free throws.

With Cal football coach Jeff Tedford munching on a big bucket of popcorn, the Bears kept rolling during the school's best year in ages for its major sports. Former football center Jeremy Newberry, now a Pro Bowler with the San Francisco 49ers, also attended.

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