Feb. 1, 2010
A Trip To The Desert On Tap For Huskies After OT Win
The University of Washington women's basketball team (9-10, 4-5 Pac-10) put a stamp on their 29th straight win over Washington State, topping the Cougars 76-70 in overtime on Jan. 29. Now the Huskies will see if the momentum is enough to propel them to a successful trip to the Arizona schools. Washington will face red-hot Arizona State (13-7, 5-4), who have won five of their last six games on Thursday evening in Tempe at 5:30 p.m. (PST).
Entering his 11th season, Steve Sandmeyer will handle all play-by-play duties for the Washington Huskies - both home and away - on KKNW 1150AM. During home games, he will also be joined by former women's basketball letter-winner Elise (Niemela) Woodward, who will provide color commentary. Dan Giuliani calls home games for GoHuskies.com, part of a joint venture with Comcast On-Demand.
The Arizona State game will also be broadcast by Fox Sports Arizona.
Coach Tia Jackson's weekly press conference will be replayed on UWTV (Husky Hoops Talk) on Tuesday evenings at 6:30 p.m.
Live stats for the game will be available on GameTracker.
About the Huskies
Sami Whitcomb leads Washington in scoring with 14.8 points and 6.1 rebounds per contest. The senior has also compiled a team-high four double-doubles this season. The Huskies are 5-7 on the road, including 2-3 in Pac-10 Conference games. Last year, the Huskies won just one Pac-10 road game.
Washington out-rebounded the Cougars 47-35. Two players (Mackenzie Argens and Laura McLellan) posted double-digit rebounds.
Christina Rozier scored eight points (all in overtime) to provide the Huskies with a much-needed win over the Cougars in Pullman, extending the streak to 29 games over their in-state rivals.
UW is third in the Pac-10 in blocks per game, averaging 4.2 over 19 contests.
Mackenzie Argens and Regina Rogers are tied for ninth in the Pac-10 in blocks with 1.1 per game. Kristi Kingma and Whitcomb are seventh and 13th in the league, respectively in steals (1.9 and 1.5).
Whitcomb is second in the conference in free-throw percentage, with 68 made in 78 attempts for a .872 average.
Charting Washington's Results
UW ran its win streak over rival Washington State to 29 straight with a 76-70 OT win over the Cougars in Pullman. Sami Whitcomb's career-high 32 points carried UW to the win to snap a four-game losing streak.
The win over WSU came after a pair of tough losses by the same 69-65 score to UCLA and USC at Bank of America Arena, despite the Huskies holding halftime leads in both games. The pair of defeats added up to a four-game skid after a sweep in the previous series at Cal and Stanford.
UW led the Bears 25-24 at halftime before struggling with turnover issues in the second half in a 60-43 defeat. Against the Cardinal, the Huskies could not overcome a slow start in a 66-51 defeat in Palo Alto.
The Cal loss snapped the Huskies' three-game win streak. It was first time since 2008 that UW had taken Pac-10 games in a row, which they accomplished after sweeping Arizona and Arizona State and a road split of the Oregon schools, culminating in a 69-64 victory at Oregon State in Corvallis. The Huskies shook off a limited Whitcomb (foul trouble) to defeat the Beavers, who were 9-2 going into the game. This helped take the sting off a tough 82-71 loss to Oregon, where a second-half UW rally fell short.
The Huskies came away with a split of their two games in Michigan, falling to nationally ranked Michigan State 69-52 in East Lansing in the first contest before toppling Mid-American Conference foe Western Michigan, 71-63, in nearby Kalamazoo. A trip to Florida earned the squad a split against USF and UCF, and then Washington returned to the Northwest to grit out a 58-53 win over city rival Seattle University.
The Huskies started the year with a late loss at Portland State when Vikings forward Kelli Valentine hit a 15-footer with .3 seconds remaining to give PSU a 67-66 win. Washington rebounded with a win over Brigham Young, which featured a gutsy performance from Whitcomb, who scored the last 12 points of the game and hit a late 3 with 4.0 seconds remaining to propel UW.
But the Huskies could not sustain the momentum on the road, falling 81-52 to Gonzaga in Spokane on Nov. 22. The team then responded with a 64-46 win over Eastern Washington in the first round of the Husky Classic before losing in the tournament finale to Sacramento State.
About Arizona State
Arizona State is coached by Charli Turner Thorne, who is in her 12th year with the program. She is the winningest coach in Sun Devil history (263 wins) and 4th in the Pac-10 for most career wins. Thorne has lead the Sun Devils to the NCAA Tournament seven times in the last nine years, including the last five seasons in a row. In the summer of 2009, Coach Thorne served as head coach of the USA Women's World University team who captured the gold medal at the games in Belgrade, Serbia.
The Sun Devils are 13-7 on the season and are rolling, having won five of their last six games. Their one loss came at No. 2 Stanford.
ASU went 26-9 last year and made the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament, where they fell to the eventual National Champion - Connecticut.
Arizona State is coming off a dramatic victory at Cal in Berkeley. Danielle Orsillo won the game with a jumper with .5 seconds remaining from the baseline.
Orsillo leads the Sun Devils in scoring at 14.0 ppg. The only other ASU player averaging in double-digits is Becca Tobin (10.5).
The Sun Devils are second in the conference in rebounding margin (+7.1). In the same category, ASU ranks 18th in the nation.
Arizona State has two players who are top-10 in the conference in blocks. Becca Tobin averages 1.4 swats per game for ASU, while Kali Bennet is seventh in the Pac-10 with 1.2.
Series Record: UW leads the all-time series 27-23, including a 62-56 win in the team's previous meeting at Bank of America Arena on Jan. 7, 2010. Sami Whitcomb scored what was then her season-high with 26 points, including five 3-pointers. But this time the Huskies must travel down to Wells Fargo Arena, one of the more intimidating environments in the Pac-10. The Huskies are just 9-15 in Tempe, and haven't won at ASU since a 66-62 victory on Jan. 11, 2001. In their last trip to ASU, the Huskies scored just 32 points in a loss to the Sun Devils, a game in which UW missed its first 12 shots.
Noteworthy: Former Husky Kali Bennett is now eligible at Arizona State after transferring out of Seattle following the 2007-08 season. Bennett is averaging 6.2 points per game in 19 games, two of which were starts. ... Bennett hails from Ventura, Calif., the same hometown as Sami Whitcomb, although Bennett went to Ventura while Whitcomb graduated from Buena. ... Sun Devils coach Charli Turner Thorne was a graduate assistant at Washington while she earned a master's in education in 1990.
Up Next For The Huskies
The Huskies will stay in Arizona and make the two-hour trek down I-10 to conclude their road trip with a game at Arizona on Sat., Feb. 6 (11 a.m. PST).