Jan. 14, 2010
BERKELEY, Calif. - There were plenty of bumps and bruises delivered by both teams. But when it came down to crunch time, the Huskies weren't able to answer the final bell.
All throughout the night, Washington struggled to solve California's pressure defense and the left Haas Pavilion with a 60-43 loss Thursday. The defeat snapped a three-game winning streak for the Huskies, who fell to 8-7, 3-2 in the Pac-10 Conference. Cal improved to 7-8 and also picked up their first conference win in four games.
Regina Rogers led UW with 13 points, which tied a season high for the post. Sarah Morton added 11 points for Washington, the third time the junior has scored in double-digits this year.
The first eight minutes of the second half encapsulated the game for Washington, which struggled to bring the ball up the court against the Golden Bears press. Overall, the Huskies were undone by a season-high 30 turnovers.
"Credit to Cal, they turned their pressure up that much more, if you can imagine that," said coach Tia Jackson. "Anytime you can cause 30 turnovers, more times than not they forced us into situations that were uncomfortable."
Alexis-Gray Lawson scored a game-high 19 points, showcasing her toughness even after taking an inadvertent elbow to the mouth, which nearly knocked out one of the senior's teeth. Freshman DeNesha Stallworth added 13 points and eight rebounds. Gray Lawson and her wing partner, Eliza Pierre, combined to thwart the Huskies' scoring duo in Sami Whitcomb and Kristi Kingma. The team's two leading scorers combined for just eight points on 3-of-12 shooting.
At first, it looked as if the Huskies were going to take control of the freshman-laden Golden Bears, who are retooling this year after a Sweet 16 run last year. Trailing 9-5, Washington reeled off a 13-0 run to go ahead 18-9, capped by a Kingma jumper from the corner. Cal answered with an 8-0 run of their own before both teams traded buckets before the end of the half.
But in the second half the Golden Bears ratcheted up the pressure, and the Dawgs struggled to adjust. Nevertheless, the Huskies were within the game at the final media timeout.
"For us, it's a tough situation, but we can bounce back," Jackson said. "We have a tough animal coming up on Saturday."
That animal would be No. 2 Stanford, which is coming off a steamroll victory over Washington State at Maples Pavilion on Thursday night. The final game of the Huskies road trip tips off at 2 p.m. in Palo Alto on Saturday afternoon.