The Washington Huskies focused at opening tip-off, sending first-half scare upon seventh ranked Arizona Wildcats 77-66
The Washington Huskies limped into the desert to face the seventh ranked Arizona Wildcats. UW had lost four of the last five games, 6 of the last eight. In fact, the team entered Conference play at a record of 7-5. Now at 9-11, the team was desperate for a win.
The frustration showed as the Washington Huskies played above average defense on the Arizona Wildcats in the first half. The Huskies held Arizona scoreless from the perimeter until Allonzo Trier made a 3-point Jumper with 1:42 remaining in the first half. The Huskies ended the first half with solid play, and what appeared to be a set up for another NCAA upset. The score was Washington 33 Arizona 31. Sam Timmins was an unsung hero, scoring his season high in the first half.
But the Arizona Wildcats were playing defense almost exclusively on Markelle Fultz. Double and sometimes triple-teaming Fultz, the Wildcats held him to a sub-average eight points. Noah Dickerson tied Fultz with eight points in the first half.
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The second half sent false hopes to Huskies fans, as UW came with two quick scores to jump out to 37-31. But from that point on, the game was virtually all Wildcats. Outscoring the Huskies 46-29, the Wildcats found the three-point shooting that had been lost in the first half.
And the defense continued to plague Markelle Fultz, who could do no better than eight points in the second half. Conversely, the Huskies ran aground of foul trouble, as first half leading scorer committed his fifth foul in the second half and had to sit out the remainder of the game. Now without Dickerson’s offense, the Wildcat focused on Fultz almost exclusively.
The gamble paid off as the Washington Huskies basketball team fell to 9-12 for the season, and 2-7 in the PAC-12.
Markelle Fultz led all scorers in the game with 16 points and 9 rebounds. Alonzo Trier came off the bench for the Wildcats to drop 12 points on the Huskies.
The 9-12 Huskies will next host the 18-4 USC Trojans at home on February 1st at 8 PM PT. Meanwhile, the 20-2 Arizona Wildcats will travel to face the 4-18 Oregon State Beavers on February 2nd at 6 PM PT.