March 16, 2010
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Quincy Pondexter Ready For NCAA Tournament
SAN JOSE, Calif. - The Pac-10 Tournament champion University of Washington men's basketball team (24-9, 11-7 Pac-10/3rd) heads to San Jose, Calif. to face the Big East's Marquette (22-11, 11-7 Big East/T-5th) on Thursday, March 18 at approximately 4:20 p.m. in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at HP Pavilion. The Huskies are seeded 11th in East Region, while the Golden Eagles drew the No. 6 seed. The winner will face either No. 3 New Mexico or No. 14 Montana in the second round.
Live Game Coverage
Every game of the NCAA Tournament will be televised live in HD by CBS. Calling the play-by-play action in the Huskies' pod is Speros Dedes and Bob Wenzel will provide color commentary. Every Husky game is broadcast live on the radio throughout the Pacific Northwest via the Washington ISP Sports Network with Bob Rondeau and Jason Hamilton behind the microphone. The Seattle-based flagship station for the network is KJR 950 AM. The radio broadcast and a statistical GameTracker will also be available live on the internet via GoHuskies.com. Tournament games are also carried live throughout a network of radio stations and satellite outlets through Westwood One and will be shown live on the internet via CBSSports.com.
Last Time Out For Washington
The Huskies claimed their second-ever Pac-10 Tournament title by knocking off top-seed California in a thrilling 79-75 game on Saturday. The lead changed hands 22 times but the Huskies were able to hold off several late rally attempts by the regular-season champs to punch their ticket to the NCAA Tournament. Quincy Pondexter scored 18 points, Tournament Most Outstanding Player Isaiah Thomas added 16 and hot-shooting Washington shot 52.7% from the field and 94.4% from the free throw line. Venoy Overton hit two free throws with 2.1 seconds left for the third-seeded Huskies (24-9), who emphatically salvaged their up-and-down season with seven straight wins. Both teams made impressive rallies while the lead swung wildly in the final minutes. Cal trailed 61-52 with 11 minutes to go before scoring 14 consecutive points and holding Washington scoreless for more than 5 1/2 minutes. The Bears led 66-61, but the Huskies made their own 12-2 rally, reclaiming the lead with 3:22 left on a 3-pointer by Elston Turner.
Head Coach Lorenzo Romar
The 2009 Pac-10 Coach of the Year, Lorenzo Romar is entering his eighth season as the 18th head men's basketball coach at Washington. He tallied win number 150 for his UW career, just the fourth coach to reach that mark, against Montana on Nov. 29. He owns a 169-90 (.653) record at Washington and is 262-178 (.595) in 13 seasons as a head coach. The first African-American head basketball coach at UW, he moved to third all-time in victories at UW after passing Tippy Dye against Cal on Jan. 16. That win was also the 250th overall during his coaching career. Romar led Washington to three-straight NCAA Tournament appearances (2004, 05, 06) and the school's first back-to-back Sweet 16 appearances (2005 & 06). He was the 2005 Pac-10 and Black Coaches Association Coach of the Year. Romar played point guard for Marv Harshman's 1979 and 1980 teams and spent five years in the NBA after college. Prior to UW, Romar served as the head coach at Saint Louis (1999-02) and Pepperdine (1996-99) and was an assistant coach at UCLA (1992-96) - He helped lead the Bruins to the 1995 national title. A native of Compton, Calif., he graduated from Pius X High School. Romar and his wife, Leona, have three daughters: Terra, Tavia and Taylor - a current UW cheerleader.
Late Season Streak
Washington enters the NCAA Tournament riding a seven game win streak and have won 12 of 14 overall. A big reason for their success has been the sudden ability to win away from Bank of America Arena. UW started the season 0-6 on the road and 0-1 at neutral sites, but has since went 4-0 on the road and 3-0 at the LA Staples Center in the Pac-10 Tourney. During their seven game streak they are outscoring their opposition by 12.6 points and shooting 49.6% from the field (45.2% overall during the season).
The team has also been very balanced during the turnaround. In the last 14 games, nine players have averaged at least 8 minutes per game. Matthew Bryan-Amaning has especially stepped up his game as he is averaging double-figure scoring and 7 rebounds a game - both about 2 more than his overall averages.
Huskies Against The Big East
Washington is 9-18 all-time against the Big East, including a 74-66 loss to Georgetown in the John Wooden Classic on Dec. 12 in Anaheim. The Huskies have lost their last 10 games against Big East foes. Their last win was a 79-75 decision over DePaul on Dec. 6, 1989. Ominously, three of the UW's last six NCAA Tournament appearance runs have been ended by Big East teams: 1998 vs. UConn (L, 75-74), 2005 vs. Louisville (L, 93-78) and 2006 vs. UConn (L, 98-82).
The only common opponent the two teams share is Georgetown, who MU was 1-1 against. They won 62-59 in Milwaukee before falling 80-57 in the semifinals of the Big East Tournament.
Lorenzo Romar 1-5 all-time and lost four-straight against Marquette - all from his days at St. Louis.
Marquette Against The Pac-10
The Huskies and Golden Eagles have faced off twice in their history, with Marquette holding a 2-0 advantage and the last encounter coming in 1978. MU posted a 71-63 win at home in that game and also won 75-74 in 1965 as part of the Milwaukee Classic.
Overall, Marquette is 13-6 against the Pac-10, last playing Stanford and losing 82-81 in the second round of the 2008 NCAA Tournament.
A Quick Look At Marquette
Marquette is making its fifth-straight NCAA trip and was 22-11 overall and 11-7 in Big East action. They are led by Lazar Hayward, who averages 18.1 point and 7.7 rebounds per game. Hayward and Quincy Pondexter were teammates this summer on Team USA for the World University Games. Forward Jimmy Butler is second on the team with 14.9 points per game and Darius Johnson-Odom is the only other double-figure scorer at 12.8 ppg.
MU relies on a small lineup that has two starters standing 6-7 and three others that are 6-2 or smaller. The Golden Eagles have hit 262 three-pointers this season (7.9 per game) and have four players that have hit 45 or more this season. For perspective, Isaiah Thomas has hit 57 three's and no other Huskies had more than 37 three-point buckets.
UW In The NCAA Tournament
Washington is making its 14th NCAA Tournament appearance and owns a 15-15 record since the first event in 1943. The Huskies are 5-4 in tournament games under Lorenzo Romar: 0-1 in 2004; 2-1 in 2005; 2-1 in 2006; and 1-1 in 2009.
The Huskies were the No. 4 seed in 2009 and beat Mississippi State 71-58 in the first round before dropping to Purdue 76-74 in the second round.
UW was previously a No. 11 seed in 1998 and pulled off a first round upset of Xavier, second round win over Richmond before losing by a buzzer beater from Connecticut in the Sweet 16.
Pondexter Makes Pac-10 Player Of The Week History
Quincy Pondexter is the first player in Pac-10 history to win five Player of the Week honors in the same season. Previously he was one of five to ever win four time in one year, joining an illustrious group that included Oregon State's Gary Payton (1988-89), Arizona's Chris Mills (1992-93), UCLA's Ed O'Bannon (1994-95) and Arizona State's Eddie House (1999-2000). All four of those players went on to win at least a share of the Pac-10 Player of the Year award. Pondexter won on March 8 after a sweep at Oregon and OSU in which he averaged 26 points and 7 rebounds, on Feb. 8 after a sweep of the Arizona schools, on Jan. 18 after a sweep of Cal and Stanford, on Dec. 7 after a loss at Texas Tech in which he scored 31 points and win over CS Northridge and Nov. 16 after winning co-MVP honors for the Athletes in Action Classic.
Matthew Bryan-Amaning has been outstanding of recent, especially over the last 11 games. He took back a starting role nine games ago and over the last 11 games has averaged 12.3 ppg on 61.5% shooting (59-96). He also leads the team with 85 rebounds, 12 steals and 15 blocks over that span. Going back even further, MBA is averaging 11.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.7 blocks and 1.1 steals over the last 12 games.