Washington Huskies fold in Las Vegas to Oregon State in OT

Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images /

The Washington Basketball team entered the Pac-12 Tournament as the underdog to lower seed Oregon State. Despite a spirited effort, the Huskies didn’t have the winning hand and fell 69-66

The Washington Basketball team was not expected to make much noise in the Pac-12 tournament this season. After all, many of the committed prospects defected when the program decided to change head basketball coaches. So a new coach, a scramble to fill roster spots, and returning from a 9-22 season did not afford the team much hope in the eyes of prognosticators.

But somewhere along the way, the team began to find suprising success. By the mid-season mark, the team has amassed an 11-4 overall record and had a 1-1 record in the Pac-12.  By the 20 game mark, the team had improved to 14-6 and 4-3 in the Pac-12. By the time February 3, 2018 hit, the  Huskies had swept the Arizona team series by beating both Arizona State and Arizona. That was the high point of the season.

Peaked too soon

By the time that series ended, many expected to see the Washington Basketball team appear in the national rankings. When that didn’t happen, many asked why?  But the rankings seemed to foreshadown what would come next.  They stumbled.

Despite a surprising opening to the season, the team found competition much stiffer in the heart of the Pac-12 conference. They lost both games to Stanford, to Oregon, and to Utah. And they split a hard fought series against Oregon State where the total point difference in two games is one point, in Oregon State’s favor.


It was that one point difference which leaned odds-makers to favor Oregon State before the game. The team was virtually a dead heat when comparing the starters. Oregon State’s Drew Eubanks led all scorers with 19 points while Tres Tinkle led the Beavers on the boards with 10 rebounds.  Washington countered with leading scorer Matisse Thybulle at 16 points and Noah Dickerson in with 10 rebounds.

The game was a defensive contest throughout. While the Huskies held the longer leads, neith team could pull away from the other. By regulation, the teams were tied at 57 apiece. In overtime, the Beavers made use of their height advantage to grab rebounds. That forced the Huskies to foul, which put Oregon State at the foul line where they nailed eight of ten.  That 80 percent was a far better outcome than regulation, where the Beavers flailed at just 12 of 22.

Roster, reality, review

Another tale was the play of the bench. Oregon State’s bench added 13 points, 11 rebounds, and three assists. Washington’s bench mustered just eight points, seven rebounds, and no assists. While not exactly the outcome many had hoped for,  the season ended with far more positives than negatives. Still, the question is: What’s next?

Next: Washington Basketball team Dawgs in Pac-12 Tourney opener

While the Washington Basketball team loses forward Greg Bowman and guard Dan Kingma to graduation, the team welcomes small forward Jamal Bey, point guard Elijah Hardy, and center Nate Roberts to the team next year.  While Ed Change is a verbal commit, reports had surfaced that he will reclassify to the class of 2019.   And of the current roster, will any players flirt with the 2018 NBA Draft? Stay tuned…