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Dawgs And Cats Fight For First
Release: 01/18/2011
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Jan. 18, 2011

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Tuesday Press Conferences: Lorenzo Romar

SEATTLE -- The No. 20 Huskies (13-4, 5-1 Pac-10) will host No. 25 Arizona (15-3, 4-1 Pac-10) on Thursday, Jan. 20 at 7:30 p.m. with a lot on the line. Thursday's winner will be the only one-loss team left in the Pac-10 and take a definitive advantage in the race for conference supremacy. With Arizona ranked in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll, the game will pit ranked Pac-10 teams against each other for the first time since Washington played Arizona State in the 2009 Pac-10 tournament.

On The Airwaves
Thursday's game can be found on Sports Radio KJR 950-AM in Seattle and the Husky IMG College Sports Network throughout the region. Bob Rondeau will call play-by-play and Jason Hamilton will provide color commentary. FSN will televise the game with Steve Physioc calling the action and Marques Johnson providing color. Rebecca Haarlow is the sideline reporter.

UW vs. Arizona History
Arizona leads the all-time series with the Huskies 43-24. Washington has started to gain momentum in the rivalry, winning six of eight games from 2004-06. UW has won the last three games at Hec Edmundson and five of the last seven at home. UW and Arizona have each won 16 times in Seattle. Coach Lorenzo Romar is 9-9 all-time against Arizona. Last year against Arizona, UW won in Seattle but lost in Tucson. Arizona head coach Sean Miller went 1-1 against the Huskies last year -- his first year at Arizona. UW and Arizona last played on Feb. 4, 2010 when the Huskies won 81-75.

Scouting Arizona
Arizona coach Sean Miller is in his 2nd year at the helm and has helped the Wildcats to a 15-3 start, 4-1 in Pac-10. Leading the way for the Cats is Derrick Williams, who ranks 2nd in the Pac-10 with 19.7 ppg and is 7th with 7.3 rpg. He earned Pac-10 Player of the Week honors after scoring 31 and snagging 10 rebounds in a 80-69 win over ASU on Saturday. No other Wildcat averages double figures. Solomon Hill (8.5), Kyle Fogg (7.8), Lamont Jones (7.6) and Jamelle Horne (7.6) round out the starting five for Arizona.

Last Time Vs. Arizona
Quincy Pondexter scored 30 points and Venoy Overton sank 6 free throws in the final minute to give Washington an 81-75 victory on Feb. 4, 2010 at Hec Edmundson Pavilion. Overton made his deciding free throws in the final 50 seconds for the Huskies after the Wildcats had battled back from 10 points down to within two, as the score was 73-71 with 33 seconds to go. Freshman Lamont Jones had 14 points for Arizona, but their leading scorer, Nic Wise, was just 4-for-17 from the field for 12 points. Arizona's second-leading scorer Derrick Williams fouled out with three points without even playing eight minutes of the foul-filled game. With Washington leading 53-52 midway through the second half, Pondexter scored on a jump shot and Scott Suggs had a breakaway two-handed slam. Pondexter added two free throws and a tip-in and, with eight consecutive points, the Huskies were now up 61-52 with 8:52 left. The Wildcats went on a 14-3 run to get within 71-69 with 1:19 left. Overton then made two free throws with 50 seconds remaining to put the Huskies up 73-69. The 77 percent free throw shooter made four more and finished 9 for 10 from the line to seal the win.

Four Facts:
Isaiah Thomas is the 8th UW player with 13 or more assists in a game.
• Washington went 3-1 at Cal, Stanford, UCLA & USC for the first time since 1987.
• UW is 5-1 in the Pac-10 for the third time under Lorenzo Romar (2005 & 2008).
• Four Dawgs are above 41.7% from 3-point range and would rank among the top-10 UW single-season percentages.

UW's Pac-10 Trends
•UW is 5-1 for the seventh time since the Pac-10 first formed in 1978-79. It's the third time under Lorenzo Romar that UW has started 5-1 (2008 & 2005).
• Washington went 3-1 at Cal, Stanford, UCLA & USC for the first time since 1987.
•Thomas leads the Pac-10 in assists per game with 5.4 and improves to 8.2 in conference-only games.
• The Huskies started 4-0 in Pac-10 play for the first time since 1984 when they jumped out of the gate 6-0.
• Before losing to Stanford, UW had its longest Pac-10 win streak since the conference formed in 1978 with 11-straight games dating back to last season, including three Pac-10 Tournament games.
Venoy Overton is the active career Pac-10 leader in assists (348) and steals (165).
Isaiah Thomas and Matthew Bryan-Amaning are the first different Huskies to be honored as Pac-10 Players of the Week in back-to-back weeks.
• UW started the Pac-10 season by sweeping a series on the road for the first time since 1976 when they swept Stanford and Cal.
• UW's overtime victory at USC was Washington's first-ever Pac-10-opening OT victory on the road. The only other overtime win UW had in a Pac-10 opener was 78-73 on Jan. 11, 1992 vs. WSU at Hec Ed.
• The Huskies were 11-7 overall and finished third in the Pac-10 last season. They were 7-2 at home and 4-5 on the road. The Huskies started last year 0-5 on the road before finishing the season 4-0 away from home.

Among The Pac-10 Leaders
UW is leading the Pac-10 in 10 categories including: scoring (87.1 ppg), scoring margin (+19.5), three-point field goal percentage (40.4%), three-point field goals made per game (9.5), rebounds per game (40.7), offensive rebounds (14.8), offensive rebounding percentage (40.0%), assists per game (17.9), assists to turnover ratio (1.5) and turnover margin (+4.3). They also rank second among the 10 teams in four other categories: field goal percentage (48.6%), rebounding margin (+6.5), field goal percentage defense (39.8%) and blocked shots (4.9).

Last Time Out
AP - Isaiah Thomas scored 18 of his season-high 27 points in the first half and No. 17 Washington bounced back from the Stanford loss to beat California 92-71 and salvage a split on its tough Bay Area trip. Thomas also dished out a career-high 13 assists, including two in a row on 3-pointers by Justin Holiday to start the second half as UW quickly pulled away. Holiday scored 23 points and Matthew Bryan-Amaning added 22 and 11 rebounds for the Huskies, who shot much better than their cold performance against the Cardinal three days earlier. Harper Kamp scored 20 points and freshman Allen Crabbe 16 points for the Golden Bears (9-8, 2-3). Washington shot 52.3 percent, going 13 for 29 from long range, to pull off a rare win at Haas Pavilion. The Huskies had won just twice in their previous 10 visits to Cal's home floor, the last time an 87-84 victory on March 1, 2008. Holiday shot 9 for 14 with five 3-pointers. Bryan-Amaning went 10 for 15 from the floor and Thomas was 8 of 16 and made all eight of his free-throw tries. The Huskies looked inspired and ready against the defending Pac-10 regular-season champions. Richard Solomon added 14 points for Cal, making all five of his shots. But the Bears were outrebounded 43-27 and gave up 17 fast break points. After Cal pulled to 23-22 on Emerson Murray's basket with 8:10 left in the first half, Washington responded with a 13-2 burst to build a 36-24 lead. Bryan-Amaning scored five straight during the run and the Huskies led 48-33 at halftime after shooting 53.1 percent and making 7 of 14 from 3-point range in the first half. Washington made eight of its first 12 shots to build a 19-11 lead.

Recent Trends
Isaiah Thomas has 7+ assists in each of the past five games and is averaging 9.2 apg during that span.
Justin Holiday jacked up a career-high 14 shots against both Stanford and California.
• Thomas' 13 assists at Cal were the most by a Husky since Will Conroy had 14 at Cal on 3/3/05.
• Washington has attempted 25 or more three-pointers in 10 games this season and in each of the past four games.
• Washington has hit the 100-point plateau a team-record tying five times this year (also 2004-05).
• The Huskies are 20th in both the latest Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll after being 17th and 18th last week.
• UW was 7-0 in their nonconference home games and won by an average margin of +30.9 ppg. It is their largest home non-conference average margin of victory since +31.8 during the 1947-48 season.
Matthew Bryan-Amaning is averaging 17.9 ppg and 9.9 rpg since being re-inserted into the starting lineup vs. San Francisco.

May I Assist You?
Isaiah Thomas has taken control of the Pac-10 lead for assists and is averaging 5.4 per game overall and 8.2 in conference-only action. He has moved into UW's top-10 all-time list, thanks in large part to 13 dimes against Cal on Jan. 16. His total that day is the most since Will Conroy recorded 14 on 3/3/05 at Cal. He is just the 8th Husky to ever record 13 or more assists in a game. Overall, the Huskies are averaging 17.6 assists per game and rank 8th nationally.

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